IN “BE GREAT! CLASSIC” PRIOR TO
SOLAR BEARS GAME AT AMWAY CENTER
Fifth Leading Scorer in NHL History & Gold Medal Winners will
Appear on March 29
Orlando, FL – The Orlando Solar Bears, proud affiliate of the NHL’s Minnesota Wild and Toronto Maple Leafs and AHL’s Iowa Wild and Toronto Marlies, announced today that Hall of Fame forward Marcel Dionne and 1980 Gold Medal Winning Olympians Mike Ramsey and Dave Christian will play in the annual “BE GREAT! Classic for Kids” on Saturday, March 29, at the Amway Center. Dionne is fifth All-Time in the NHL with 1,771 points and was inducted into the NHL Hall of Fame in 1992. Both Ramsey and Christian helped the United States Men’s Hockey Team capture a Gold Medal at the 1980 Olympics held in Lake Placid, New York – “The Miracle on Ice”. Local hockey players will have the opportunity to purchase a roster spot to skate alongside Dionne, Ramsey and Christian and the net proceeds will benefit the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Florida.
The “BE GREAT! Classic for Kids”, now in its second season, grants 36 local players an opportunity to play with former NHL stars. Orlando Solar Bears Head Coach Vince Williams, Assistant Coach Brad Tapper, and former Solar Bears goaltender Allen Bester will take the ice along with Dionne, Christian, and Ramsey. Williams and Tapper both played for the Solar Bears during their 2000-01 Turner Cup Championship season, and Tapper played 71 games in the NHL for the Atlanta Thrashers from 2000-03, scoring 14 goals and 25 points. Hall of Famer Bryan Trottier participated in last season’s game.
The game will begin at 4:00 p.m. at the Amway Center, immediately preceding the Solar Bears game against the Evansville IceMen. Players who take part in the “BE GREAT! Classic for Kids” will be recognized on the ice with an award presentation during one of the intermissions of the Solar Bears game that night.
“I am very honored to take part in the ‘BE GREAT! Classic’ at the Amway Center,” said Dionne. “I am proud to help raise awareness for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Florida and am excited to skate with local hockey players in Orlando.”
For information on participating in the “BE GREAT! Classic for Kids”, players can call the Solar Bears at 407-951-8200. Roster spots are limited and available on a first come first served basis. Fans holding tickets for the Solar Bears vs. Evansville IceMen game at 7:00 p.m. on Saturday, March 29 will receive FREE admission into the “BE GREAT! Classic for Kids” game.
Dionne played 1,348 NHL games for the Detroit Red Wings Los Angeles Kings, and New York Rangers, finishing with 731 goals, 1,040 assists, and 1,771 points. He is fourth all-time in goals, fifth all-time in points, and ninth all-time in assists. Dionne played in eight NHL All-Star Games, and was selected as a First or Second Team All-Star on four occasions. He won the Art Ross Trophy as the league’s highest scoring player in the 1979-80 season, and won the Lester B. Pearson Award, given to the league’s most valuable player as voted on by the NHL Players Association (now called the Ted Lindsay Award), in both 1979-80 and 1978-79. Dionne also won the Lady Byng Trophy, for the player who exhibited the best type of sportsmanship and gentlemanly conduct combined with a high standard of playing ability, in both 1976-77 and 1974-75. He is one of only six players in NHL history to score over 700 goals in his career, and at the time of his retirement in 1989 he ranked second in career goals, assists, and points, trailing Gordie Howe in all three categories.
Ramsey won a Gold Medal with United States Olympic Hockey Team in 1980 and was part of the game now known as the “Miracle on Ice” when the U.S. defeatedthe U.S.S.R. He went on to play 17 seasons in the NHL, including 14 (1980-1993) with the Buffalo Sabres, who drafted him 11th overall in the 1979 NHL Entry Draft. Ramsey served as Buffalo’s captain in the 1991-92 season, and played in the NHL All-Star Game in 1982, 1983, 1985, and 1986. Along with Buffalo, Ramsey also played for the Pittsburgh Penguins (1993-94) as well as the Detroit Red Wings (1994-97). Following his playing career, Ramsey was an assistant coach for the Buffalo Sabres from 1997-2000 and for Orlando’s NHL affiliate, the Minnesota Wild, from 2001-10.
Christian was teammates with Ramsey on the 1980 Olympic Gold Medal Team, and also went on to play in the NHL. Immediately following the Olympics, Christian joined the Winnipeg Jets who drafted him 40th overall in the 1979 NHL Entry Draft. He currently holds the record for fastest goal scored in a player’s first NHL game, scoring seven seconds into his first shift. After averaging nearly a point-per-game in four seasons with Winnipeg (1980-83), Christian joined the Washington Capitals from 1983-90. He then played parts of two seasons (1989-91) with the Boston Bruins, and closed his NHL career with the St. Louis Blues in1991-92 and Chicago Blackhawks from 1992-94. Christian played in 1,009 NHL contests, scoring 340 goals along with 433 assists for 773 points.
Orlando Solar Bears individual game tickets for the 2013-14 season are on sale. Tickets can be purchased at the Amway Center Box Office or online at OrlandoSolarBearsHockey.comor Ticketmaster.com. For the Promotional Calendar, click here.
The Orlando Solar Bears, the ECHL affiliate of the NHL’s Minnesota Wild and Toronto Maple Leafs and AHL’s Iowa Wild and Toronto Marlies, play all of their home games at the 2012 Street and Smith’s Sports Business Journal Sports Facility of the Year, the Amway Center.
Follow the Solar Bears at www.OrlandoSolarBearsHockey.com, Facebook, and Twitter(@OrlandoHockey) for all the latest news and updates. Stay in touch with Shades on Instagram by following ShadestheSolarBear.
Group tickets are a great way to entertain employees, co-workers, clients, friends and family. For more information on discounted group tickets and a list of group benefits, call 407-951-8200 or visit www.orlandosolarbearshockey.com/groups.