TORONTO – Jeff Chynoweth said his late father was aware that he was going to be nominated for induction into the Hockey Hall of Fame before he died last spring.
Ed Chynoweth, the longtime head of the Western Hockey League and the Canadian Hockey League, was a powerful figure in junior hockey for 37 years. He died last April at the age of 66 after a battle with cancer.
Chynoweth was elected posthumously in the Hall’s builder’s category and was represented by his son at a ceremony Monday morning.
“He actually had a spring in his step for about three or four days there and he saw the booklet that was presented,” Jeff Chynoweth said. “Obviously we had all hoped that he could hang on a little longer but I know that he knew about it so that made it extra special.”
Chynoweth said he thought the implementation of the WHL scholarship plan was his father’s greatest accomplishment.
“He established that in 1993 and that was kind of tough to get that through with the owners because a lot of them were old-school,” he said. “But to see almost 600 scholarships handed out the last two years by WHL teams shows the program is working better than ever.”
ROCK ON: Hockey Hall of Fame inductee Glenn Anderson said Monday he didn’t truly grasp the impact Wayne Gretzky had on the public until they went out on the road during the Edmonton Oilers’ glory years in the 1980s.
“When we were on the road, you were literally a rock star,” Anderson said. “They would be rocking our bus, the people and the fans outside. They’d be chanting his name and running alongside the bus.
“It was just so overwhelming.”
Anderson won five Stanley Cups with the Oilers. He won his sixth and final championship with the New York Rangers in 1994.
INTIMIDATION FACTOR: The powerhouse Edmonton teams of the 1980s were an imposing sight for most teams in the National Hockey League.
Former Edmonton forward Glenn Anderson said the Oilers were just as intimidating at practice.
“Other teams would come and watch us practise and they’d be scared,” Anderson said. “They’re going, ‘We might as well not even show up, they’re just way too good.”‘