|Height 5 ft 11 in (180 cm)|
Name Anders Hedberg
Career end 1985
Career start 1967
|NHL Draft Undrafted|
Weight 79 kg
Role Ice hockey player
|Born 25 February 1951 (age 64)
Ornskoldsvik, Sweden (1951-02-25) |
Awards Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy
Played for Modo Hockey, Djurgardens IF Hockey, Winnipeg Jets, New York Rangers
Anders Hedberg, 50th goal Winnipeg Jets 1977
Anders Hedberg (born 25 February 1951) is a retired former professional ice hockey player who was one of the first European-born players to make an impact in North America. Along with countryman Ulf Nilsson, Hedberg signed a contract to come over to play for the Winnipeg Jets in the World Hockey Association in 1974, after having represented both Modo Hockey and Djurgårdens IF in his native Sweden. He was twice voted best junior in Sweden and as such the only one (1969+1970) and is a graduate from the Stockholm School of Physical Education (GIH).
- Anders Hedberg, 50th goal Winnipeg Jets 1977
- After playing career
- Awards and achievements
Prior to the mid-seventies, Europeans generally did not come to play in the National Hockey League, as the cartel of NHL owners had poor (some would say xenophobic) opinions of Europeans and European hockey. Players such as the Slovak-born but Canadian-raised Stan Mikita were the exception.
Hedberg was an instant sensation in the WHA, recording 100 points in 65 games in his first season, and playing alongside established superstar Bobby Hull. He scored at least 50 goals and 100 points in his other three WHA seasons peaking with 70 goals and 61 assists in 1976-77 despite only playing 68 games that year.
Hedberg played a starring role as the Jets won the Avco World Trophy titles in 1976 and 1978. In the summer of 1978, Nilsson and Hedberg signed with the NHL's New York Rangers for $2.4 million, one of the first open acknowledgements that the quality of the WHA was on par with the NHL, making a merger with the WHA possible just one season later. Hedberg recorded 856 professional points in North American hockey over 751 games, and would retire from the Rangers in 1985.
After playing career
After his active career, Hedberg has among other things worked as an assistant to general manager Craig Patrick of the New York Rangers. Between 1991-1997 he worked as a scout for the Toronto Maple Leafs before moving up to the position as assistant general manager in 1997-1999. In 2000, he was appointed general manager of the Swedish national ice hockey team and joined the Ottawa Senators as Director of Player Personnel in 2002-2007. In August 2007, he returned to the New York Rangers as the Head Professional European Scout. He was elected to the Swedish Hockey Hall of Fame on 11 February 2012.