Orval Tessier, the only Blackhawks’ coach to ever win the Jack Adams Trophy for NHL coach of the year, sits down with his former players Steve Ludzik and Steve Larmer for a fun chat.
Recently Larmer and Ludzik drove up to their old coach’s Cornwall, Ontario home to reminiscence about their time together when Tessier coached against them in junior, when he coached the two in minors in Moncton and more in his days behind the Blackhawks’ bench.
Its a great video in which Ludzik and Larmer pay tribute to the coach they credit as giving them their big breaks in professional hockey.
Tessier also discusses his coaching philosophies and the infamous “heart transplant” comment, directed at his team, he made during 1983 Campbell Conference Finals which made headlines across Canada and in Chicago. The Oilers swept the Hawks 4-0 that series and outscored them 16-6 in the first two games in Edmonton. After Game 2, Tessier was overhead by a reporter when making the comment and you could imagine it was national news the following morning. While a lot of people think that incident led to Tessier’s dismissal, he actually continued coaching the team for the next year and a half. It was actually the first round loss to Minnesota the following year and a poor first half of the 1984-85 season that got Tessier the axe. In the ’83 series, down 2 games to none, the Hawks lost a much more competitive game when the series shifted to the Stadium, 3-2. Game four was a heck of a game, but Chicago still lost 6-3, ending their season.
For those of you who were with us back in August when Ludzy joined us on TTMI~Radio, much of what’s discussed in the video will sound familiar. If not, I urge you to go back and check it out when you have an opportunity. Ludzik is a terrific character and a great, no-nonsense interview. Ludzy is a lot of fun and tells it like it is.
Check out this video and more with Ludzik at Ludzy.com