25 February 1951|
|Height||5 ft 11 in (180 cm)|
|Weight||175 lb (79 kg; 12 st 7 lb)|
New York Rangers
|Men's ice hockey|
|European Junior Championships|
|1973 Soviet Union|
Anders Hedberg (born 25 February 1951) is a retired professional ice hockey player who was one of the first European-born players to make an impact in North America. Along with countryman Ulf Nilsson, Hedberg signed a contract to come over to play for the Winnipeg Jets in the World Hockey Association (WHA) in 1974, after having represented both Modo Hockey and Djurgårdens IF in his native Sweden. Hedberg subsequently played during seven seasons in the National Hockey League (NHL) for the New York Rangers. He was twice voted best junior in Sweden and as such the only one[clarification needed] (1969 and 1970) and is a graduate from the Stockholm School of Physical Education (GIH).
Hedberg was an instant sensation in the WHA, recording 100 points in 65 games in his first season, and playing alongside established superstar Bobby Hull. He scored at least 50 goals and 100 points in his other three WHA seasons, peaking with 70 goals and 61 assists in 1976-77 despite only playing 68 games that year.
Hedberg played a starring role as the Jets won the Avco World Trophy titles in 1976 and 1978. In the summer of 1978, Nilsson and Hedberg signed with the NHL's New York Rangers for $2.4 million, one of the first open acknowledgements that the quality of the WHA was on par with the NHL, making a merger with the WHA possible just one season later. Hedberg recorded 856 professional points in North American hockey over 751 games, and retired from the Rangers in 1985.
After his active career, Hedberg has among other things worked as an assistant to general manager Craig Patrick of the New York Rangers. Between 1991-1997 he worked as a scout for the Toronto Maple Leafs before moving up to the position as assistant general manager in 1997-1999. In 2000, he was appointed general manager of the Swedish national ice hockey team and joined the Ottawa Senators as Director of Player Personnel in 2002-07. In August 2007, he returned to the New York Rangers as the Head Professional European Scout. He was elected to the Swedish Hockey Hall of Fame on 11 February 2012.
Awards and achievements
- Swedish Junior Player of the Year (1969 and 1970)
- Named Best Forward at EJC-A (1970)
- Lou Kaplan Trophy winner (1975)
- WHA Second All-Star Team (1975 and 1978)
- WHA First All-Star Team (1976 and 1977)
- Avco Cup championships (1976 and 1978)
- Played in the 1976 Canada Cup and 1981 Canada Cup tournament
- Bill Masterton Trophy winner (1985)
- Played in NHL All-Star Game (1985)
- Inducted into the IIHF Hall of Fame in 1997
- "Honoured Member" of the Manitoba Hockey Hall of Fame
- Ranked No. 36 on the all-time list of New York Rangers in the book 100 Ranger Greats (John Wiley & Sons, 2009).
- Inaugural member of the World Hockey Association Hall of Fame.
- Scored 50 goals in 50 games in 1977
Regular season and playoffs
|1966–67||Svedjeholmens IK||SWE III||16||24||—||24||—||—||—||—||—||—|
|1978–79||New York Rangers||NHL||80||33||45||78||33||18||5||4||9||12|
|1979–80||New York Rangers||NHL||80||32||39||71||21||9||3||2||5||7|
|1980–81||New York Rangers||NHL||80||30||40||70||52||14||8||8||16||6|
|1981–82||New York Rangers||NHL||4||0||1||1||0||—||—||—||—||—|
|1982–83||New York Rangers||NHL||78||25||34||59||12||9||4||8||12||4|
|1983–84||New York Rangers||NHL||79||32||35||67||16||5||1||0||1||0|
|1984–85||New York Rangers||NHL||64||20||31||51||10||3||2||1||3||2|
- Biographical information and career statistics from Eliteprospects.com, or Eurohockey.com, or Hockey-Reference.com, or Legends of Hockey, or The Internet Hockey Database
| Bill Masterton Trophy winner