Springfield, Mass.—AHL ANNOUNCES 2011 INDUCTEES INTO AMERICAN HOCKEY LEAGUE HALL OF FAME
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. The American Hockey League today announced the four people selected for induction into the American Hockey League Hall of Fame as the Class of 2011.
Honored by the AHL Hall of Fame Selection Committee as the sixth group of enshrinees are Mitch Lamoureux, Harry Pidhirny, Maurice Podoloff and Larry Wilson.
"The AHL Board of Governors is proud to support the Selection Committee's recommendation to enshrine these four gentlemen into the American Hockey League Hall of Fame," said David Andrews, AHL President and CEO. "We look forward to recognizing their outstanding contributions to the league as part of the celebration of our historic 75th season this year."
The Class of 2011 will be honored as part of the festivities at the 2011 AHL All-Star Classic presented by Capital BlueCross in Hershey, Pa. The American Hockey League Hall of Fame Induction and Awards Ceremony is scheduled for Monday, January 31.
As dynamic as he was scrappy, Mitch Lamoureux feasted on American Hockey League goaltenders during a 17-year professional career that saw him become one of the most prolific AHL scorers of his era.
The Ottawa native was selected by the Pittsburgh Penguins in the eighth round of the 1981 NHL draft and joined the Pens' new AHL affiliate in Baltimore in 1982-83. He promptly scored 57 goals the most in the 47-year history of the league at that point and recorded 107 points, at the time a rookie record. Lamoureux earned the Dudley "Red" Garrett Award as the outstanding rookie in the AHL.
Lamoureux split the next three seasons between Baltimore and Pittsburgh before joining the Philadelphia Flyers organization in 1986. In 1987-88, Lamoureux led the Hershey Bears in scoring in both the regular season and the playoffs, helping the franchise to its first 50-win season, a perfect 12-0 postseason mark and the Calder Cup championship.
After a brief stint with the Maine Mariners and two seasons in Europe, Lamoureux returned to Hershey in 1993 and led the Bears with 45 goals, 60 assists and 105 points in 80 games. He also set an AHL record with 27 power-play goals on the year. In 1995-96, Lamoureux joined the Providence Bruins and was named one of the playing captains for that year's AHL All-Star Classic, held in Hershey. He went back to the Bears for a third and final stint in 1997-98, and was named the recipient of the Fred T. Hunt Memorial Award for sportsmanship, determination and dedication to hockey in 1998-99.
Lamoureux reached the 30-goal plateau six times in his AHL career and sits in seventh place all-time in goals (364) and ninth in points (816) over 802 games. Listed at 5-foot-6, Lamoureux was also more than capable of taking care of himself, as evidenced by his six AHL seasons of more than 100 penalty minutes.
Lamoureux remained a resident of the Hershey area after hanging up his skates in 1999. The number 16 worn by both Lamoureux and fellow AHL Hall of Famer Willie Marshall has been retired by the Hershey Bears.
Formed in 2006 to recognize, honor and celebrate individuals for their outstanding achievements and contributions in the American Hockey League, the AHL Hall of Fame is housed on-line at www.ahlhalloffame.com and is accessible to fans worldwide with the click of a mouse as part of the AHL Internet Network. The Network also includes theahl.com and all 30 official team sites, and hosts more than 200 million page views each year.
In operation since 1936, the AHL continues to serve as the top development league for the players, coaches, managers, executives and broadcasters of all 30 National Hockey League teams, as well as the NHL's on-ice officials. By season's end in 2009-10, more than 85 percent of all NHL players were American Hockey League graduates, including more than 200 former first- and second-round draft picks and more than 300 players who appeared in both leagues last season alone.