Grier Retires From NHL

2 12 2011

I first started following hockey in the 2002-2003 season. That was the same year that Mike Grier started playing for the Eastern Conference in the NHL. While Grier had been playing with Edmonton for the previous seven years, this American-born player was back in the U.S. After Grier came to D.C., he continued to play for American teams (Buffalo and San Jose) for the rest of his career. I guess he realized that the United States is really a great place to play professional hockey.

I know we’re supposedly in a post-race society, but I will admit that black hockey players are somewhat of a rarity. Mike Grier though, was extra unique in this regard, because (according to Wikipedia), he “was the first African-American ice hockey player born and trained in the United States to play in the National Hockey League.” Grier was like the Jackie Robinson of the NHL! Cool. In addition to this fantastic statistic, Grier has also had a memorable hockey career, including a bronze medal from the 2004 Men’s World Ice Hockey Championships.

After such a great NHL experience though, Mike Grier has retired. He played in the NHL for 14 seasons  and was last seen playing with the Buffalo Sabres. It’s always exciting to see former Capitals players play hockey these days, so it’s a little sad to see Grier leave the NHL. But maybe he’ll do a “Dale Hunter” and come back as a coach! Who knows.




3 responses

2 12 2011
On My Square

Great post… I was always hoping he would lead more Black kids into hockey. I think he is from Boston I never took the time to see if he established programs for kids but a very solid career.

2 12 2011

Reblogged this on jamesdeloach.

5 12 2011

Great career. To be honest, I was never a fan of Grier with the Sharks post-2008, might have just been his knee. But one of the better penalty killers and grit guys during his best years in the entire league. Nice post to send him off too.

Also Capslove, Ill add you to my blogroll now that Ive discovered you.

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