Dirk Graham

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Dirk Graham
Born (1959-07-29) July 29, 1959 (age 55)
Regina, SK, CAN
Height 5 ft 11 in (180 cm)
Weight 190 lb (86 kg; 13 st 8 lb)
Position Right Wing
Shot Right
Played for CHL
 Dallas Black Hawks
 Salt Lake Golden Eagles
IHL
 Toledo Goaldiggers
AHL
 Springfield Indians
NHL
 Minnesota North Stars
 Chicago Blackhawks
National team  Canada
NHL Draft 89th overall, 1979
Vancouver Canucks
Playing career 1979–1995

Dirk Milton Graham (born July 29, 1959) is a retired Canadian professional ice hockey forward who played for the Chicago Blackhawks and Minnesota North Stars in the National Hockey League. He was honored in 1991 as the Frank J. Selke Trophy winner for outstanding defensive play by a forward. Graham served as head coach of the Blackhawks during the 1998–99 season before being relieved of his duties after 59 games. Graham was the first NHL captain of African descent.

Playing career[edit]

Graham was selected 89th overall by the Vancouver Canucks in the 1979 NHL Entry Draft after spending four years with the Regina Pats in the Western Hockey League. Graham spent four years in the minor leagues which included the International Hockey League and the Central Hockey League. In 1980–81, Graham scored 40 goals with the Toledo Goaldiggers of the IHL, and he was named to the second all-star team. In 1982–83, he scored 70 goals with the Goaldiggers and was named to the first all-star team. This caught the attention of some, and he was signed as a free agent by the Minnesota North Stars after never playing a game with the Canucks. Graham spent two more years developing in the American Hockey League and Central Hockey League. He was selected to the CHL First All-Star Team in 1983–84. In 1985–96, Graham was playing full-time with the North Stars. He recorded consecutive 20 goal seasons in Minnesota and was chosen to represent Team Canada in the 1987 World Ice Hockey Championships. On January 2, 1988, Graham was traded to the Chicago Blackhawks for Curt Fraser.

Graham played his best hockey in Chicago. In his first full season with the Blackhawks, Graham topped the 30 goal mark for the first time in his career and finished with a career high 78 points. He scored 20 goals or more four times with the Blackhawks. In 1990–91, he won the Frank J. Selke Trophy for best defensive forward in the league and represented Team Canada in the Canada Cup tournament. Canada would beat the United States to take first place. Late in 1988–89, Graham was named team captain, the first player of African descent to become team captain in the National Hockey League.[1] He captained the team all the way to the Stanley Cup Finals in 1991–92, where they were swept by the Pittsburgh Penguins. Graham retired in 1995 after the lockout shortened season.

Post-playing career[edit]

Shortly after retiring, Graham served as assistant coach for Craig Hartsburg with the Chicago Blackhawks. Graham took a year off, then returned as a scout for the Chicago Blackhawks. He served briefly as a head coach in 1998–99 until he was replaced by Lorne Molleken. He is currently a scout for the San Jose Sharks.

Awards and achievements[edit]

Dirk Graham
Medal record
Competitor for  Canada
Ice hockey
Canada Cup
Gold 1991 Canada Ice Hockey
  • Selected to the IHL Second All-Star Team in 1981.
  • Selected to the IHL First All-Star Team in 1983.
  • Selected to the CHL First All-Star Team in 1984.
  • Frank J. Selke Trophy winner in 1991.
  • First player of African descent to be named team captain in the NHL. Also first player of African descent to be appointed head coach of an NHL team.

Career statistics[edit]

Regular season Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
1975–76 Regina Blues SJHL 54 36 32 68 82
1975–76 Regina Pats WCHL 2 0 0 0 0 6 1 1 2 5
1976–77 Regina Pats WCHL 65 37 28 65 66
1977–78 Regina Pats WCHL 72 49 61 110 87 13 15 19 34 37
1978–79 Regina Pats WHL 71 48 60 108 252
1979–80 Dallas Black Hawks CHL 62 17 15 32 96
1980–81 Fort Wayne Komets IHL 6 1 2 3 12
1980–81 Toledo Goaldiggers IHL 61 40 45 85 88
1981–82 Toledo Goaldiggers IHL 72 49 65 105 68 13 10 11 21 8
1982–83 Toledo Goaldiggers IHL 78 70 55 125 88 11 13 7 20 30
1983–84 Minnesota North Stars NHL 6 1 1 2 0 1 0 0 0 2
1983–84 Salt Lake Golden Eagles CHL 57 37 57 94 72 5 3 8 11 2
1984–85 Springfield Indians AHL 37 20 28 48 41
1984–85 Minnesota North Stars NHL 36 12 11 23 23 9 0 4 4 7
1985–86 Minnesota North Stars NHL 80 22 33 55 87 5 3 1 4 2
1987–88 Minnesota North Stars NHL 28 7 5 12 39
1987–88 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 42 17 19 36 32 4 1 2 3 4
1988–89 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 80 33 45 78 91 16 2 4 6 38
1989–90 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 73 22 32 54 102 5 1 5 6 2
1990–91 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 80 24 21 45 88 6 1 2 3 19
1991–92 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 80 17 30 47 89 18 7 5 12 8
1992–93 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 84 20 17 37 139 4 0 0 0 0
1993–94 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 67 15 18 33 45 6 0 1 1 4
1994–95 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 40 4 9 13 42 16 2 3 5 8
NHL totals 772 219 270 489 919 90 17 27 44 94

International[edit]


Year Team Event   GP G A P PIM
1987 Canada WC 9 0 3 3 9
1991 Canada Can-Cup 8 3 1 4 0
Senior int'l totals 17 3 4 7 9

Coaching record[edit]

Team Year Regular season Post season
G W L T Pts Division rank Result
CHI 1998–99 59 16 35 8 (70) 3rd in Central (Fired)
Total 59 16 35 8 40

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Denis Savard
Chicago Blackhawks captain
198995
Succeeded by
Chris Chelios
Preceded by
Rick Meagher
Frank J. Selke Trophy winner
1991
Succeeded by
Guy Carbonneau
Preceded by
Craig Hartsburg
Head coach of the Chicago Blackhawks
1998-99
Succeeded by
Lorne Molleken