Richard Sévigny was one of seven goals drafted by the Montreal Canadiens in the 1977 Amateur Sketch, but the only one who graduated full-time to the National Hockey League.
He played for the NHL game for the first time during the 1979 playoffs, as a reservation to Ken Dryden when Michel Laroque was injured. Although he did not play a single game, he got his name recorded on the Stanley Cup.
The following year, the withdrawal of Dryden has led to an open competition for business work, with Laroque and Dennis Herron sharing duties, but Sévigny made his NHL debut later in the season when he was reminded by the Nova Scotia Voyageurs from the AHL to replace injured Laroque .
On November 13, 1979, in a game against the St. Louis Blues, Herron fractured his key only eight minutes into the game, and Sévigny stepped on the ice for the first time. He immediately demanded himself, often leaving his jacket to play the push behind his net to take steps to a defender; Style of a stunning style for Montreal. He stopped 25 rounds, only allowing one goal in a 5-2 win for the Canadians.
Almost 40 years later, Sévigny still covers the Montreal Canadiens jersey as a proud representative of the Canadian Alumni Association, sharing the ice cream with some family faces from his early days, including Chris Nilan and Keith Acton.
Have you ever thought that you would share the ice cream with these players 40 years later?
"Never," said Sévigny in an exclusive interview with Eyes On The Prize. "When I was with the Voyageurs, my only goal in Junior was to play a year of half-value, I did not think I had a great deal for the NHL. When you looked at the games on TV, it seemed like a completely different world.
"I think I'm very lucky to be able to play in the NHL in the 80's. For still being part of a hockey team, which is the Canadian team, and when I still see Chris and Keith, it's really special."
But beyond playing with some of the 80s, Sévigny plays with other generations of players who have ever wondered the Canadian jersey.
"For the fans, [a Canadiens Alumni game] There is a unique opportunity to see players at different times, but for the players themselves it is also incredibly unique. All decades separate players on the team. I played in the early 80's and I found myself in the same team as players like Patrice Brisebois, Marc-Andre Bergeron, Guillaume Latendresse. It's like a time that does not really exist at our team when we put the Canadian jersey. It's like we've just played with them last season.
"I was a member of the Alumni team for 25 years, and I've seen many players, and this is interesting for generations of fans. The younger fans will recognize players like Brisebois, [Mathieu] Dandenault, Latendresse, etc., whereas [my generation] It's almost the grandparents who come to see us, 50 plus.
"It's a great privilege that we have. For us we are honored to take the Montreal jersey, but also play in front of a crowd that has traveled to see us. It brings us back and makes us feel younger. It's a pleasure to do it."
How are Alumni's teams?
"We usually play with about 10 players. If children sign up, it's because they want to play. Over the last four years we measured around 45 games a year. The players really like this because you can keep pace and keep the players interested If we play one or two games every year, I think it would be much harder to get players to make the trips and play the games.
"I think we're the only NHL team that plays that many Alumni games. I think the Boston Bruins has two Alumni teams that play around 20 games each, but the Canadians are very popular throughout Canada.
"We have a group of around 30 players that the office can choose from. They first try to find some young blood just to change the appearance of the team. We do not want to be the same team that we are 10 years ago. And then we will fill with other players who can make the trip. In Montreal, we especially have many players who work in media, especially television. So it's harder for these players to make the trip out to the west because they have contracts in Montreal.
"Boys like Bergeron, Latendresse, and Brisebois could be the first to be asked. Nilan is an older player, his identity as a fighter comes to the forefront, and the people can see him again. He is a good ambassador for the team.
"In Quebec, there will be more French-speaking players, and in Ontario there will be more English players. Canadians are a picture of the ability of Canada, and people appreciate that there is a mix of both as part of the team."
Canadiens Alumni vs. Stylish leaves Alumni
The majority of the Alumni games are usually founders for any local Hockey organization or charity. The next team's next event will be on February 2, the Montreal Canadiens Alumni plays against the Toronto Maple Leafs Alumni in Belleville at the CAA Arena to raise funds for the Red Cross.
"I think all the old Canadians and old herb leaves are great ambassadors for the current teams. The people who are close to their teams do not always have the chance to meet their favorite players for reasons of security or time limits. Alumni is much more accessible when we go on it, which is very popular with the fans that come to our games.
"We're very pleased to welcome John LeClair to the lineup. It will be the first time I meet him: I have never met him. He will make his debut with us at the game, and then we will travel to West Canada with us. Guy Lafleur will be back behind He has not been able to join us during the past three seasons. Guy Carbonneau is also making the trip despite all of his television deals. Mike Weaver is one of the latest players to join the Alumni. He played a weekend for us and he was really happy with the experience.
"The important thing is that new players come to play with the team once to see how much fun we have to play together, and then we can call them again, and they will become a bit more available".
Difficult to get new players to join
"Many High School experts when they retire from a hockey take a step back from the hockey for a year or two. Others become traders or work with the media or hockey. They also have young families, so they will spend more time on them. At one moment we had Karl Dykhuis was playing with us for two or three years, but then he had a new baby, and his wife asked him to stay at home. So unfortunately he had to leave the team.
"Other players are just not interested. They have met the challenge of a hockey and have done their career, and now leave a weekend and travel 2,000 kilometers by bus, but do not interest them.
"So when new players adhere to the team, we are very glad because there is a range that starts to make specific. As if year-by-year is not new players that join the team, this may not be feasible. a good group that has added over the past three years of former Canadians. "
However, a challenge lies on the horizon, as there is no help helping the Alumni, and the frustration is a little audible by Sévigny.
"Why do you think I'm still playing 61 years old?" There's no other player who wants to play. I played more than 1,000 games with the Canadiens Alumni team, and I just missed four games along the road, and Eric Fichaud played several games. Thibault plays another, but these guys are not really available in a regular way. Sincerely, in the day when I decide to leave, I'm not sure the team can continue, and I'm pretty serious when I say that. by wounds and illnesses, as there are no other leaders ready to play. "
But age does not seem to slow down to Sévigny. He continues to show the style of play he had learned to play in his time, performing classical double-dumped stacks and experienced timed pokechairs, almost extraordinary reminiscences of how much help has changed over the years. "I play the style that I know. I do not learn a butterfly."
One thing that Sévigny has adapted over time is a better filling and a more modern hull. His original helmet offered little practicality and security.
"The old hull was completely understandable, first from the point of view. Take two of your fingers and make some circle of that width, you will see that there is a real limit seeing the hand, especially when it was near. All the leaders lived there. then it was the matter of protection, but only a little on the forehead was just, so if we had hit the blow, it was like a stroke face. We were lucky that there were not too much goals that came back in the 80s.
"The game has really changed since then, team-wise, better and lighter, but goals these days are huge athletes that get much better development. Back in my day, we'll just dump around the practice, because we do not We had some leading coaches, so we did not learn a lot. We did what we knew.
"So, when you look at the game today, that's the change that has changed the most." This revolutionized a hockey in the 2000s. "
Alumni's games are still competitive
"This is always our DNA. We will adjust our opponents when we play local teams, so the game against Maple Leafs will be something special, because both teams want to win. It does not matter when the player's age is always A question of honor and rivalry: pure, healthy rivalry, but rivalry, however. It's something special. All the games we played against NHL teams are going back to our career. We still want to prove ourselves.
"It's also a matter of respect. If people come to see us, we will have to give them our maximum. If we started to drag the ice cream, and did not try, the team's reputation would take a dip. We want to give them a good show."
As part of the celebration of the Super Bowl Weekend-a history of the Habs and Leafs, we give a jersey signed by the students.
(TheNote that Jersey has signed up at a previous Alumni game and may not sign up all the players in the next game. Also, some players not listed can be on the jersey)
To enter the contest, leave a comment below describing your favorite action from Canada zero. The winner of the jersey will be randomly selected by all competing comments in this post and the previous story about John LeClair, and revealed in our Habs titles on Monday, January 28.