Friday, 28 August 2015


With each passing day, the men who helped to build and manage this great game get slightly older. Not to be entirely morbid, but these are the men who set the bar for the Gretzkys, Lemieuxs, Crosbys, and Brodeurs to ascend to in their own times and who provided us with memories of greatness. In doing so, the men who constructed these teams were also setting records and redefining the game year after year as the Bowmans, Burnses, and Arbours began knocking down the past records of the Blakes, Adamses, and Imlachs. It's with sadness today that I write that the great Al Arbour, architect of the Islanders' dynasty in the late-'70s and early-'80s, has passed on at the age of 82.

I could go on and on about Al's achievements and records in the NHL, but I never had any interaction with him. Everything I've heard about him, though, makes it seem like this is a man who could motivate the most lazy of people into greatness! There are some unique things about Al Arbour you may not know so let's go to the man himself who will explain a number of things about Al Arbour including how he got the nickname "Radar". This piece from CBC features Elliotte Friedman interviewing Mr. Arbour, and it shows a lot about the man who led the Islanders to great heights on a number of occasions.

There was an excellent video on Newsday's site as well. Mark Herrman wrote a great piece on Arbour, and the video is from there. There are a lot of great stories from players who played under Arbour within this piece, so enjoy this one as well.
The man was a legend in life as much as he was in hockey. Seeing him break down into tears upon hearing Kelly Hrudey's words shows how much he dedicated to his players. If there was one thing I could wish for, it would be to be remembered as Al Arbour is being remembered. The man truly was a legend in all facets of his life. Rest in peace, Mr. Arbour. Many players are better people because of your influence.

Until next time, raise your sticks high in honour of Mr. Al Arbour!

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