Alan Eagleson (born 04.24.1933),
Toronto-based lawyer, hockey player agent and international
Inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto
(1989, builders category).
Resigned from HHOF in 1998.
- One of the key organizers of the 1972 Summit Series
and 1976 Canada Cup
- Sports agent of numerous NHL stars
- One of the founders of the NHL Players Association
- Served as NHLPA Executive Director in 1967-1990
- Charged with racketeering and defrauding NHLPA
in indictment handed down by U.S. grand jury in
- Sentenced to 18 months in jail in January 1998
after pleading guilty. Served only 6 months.
It happened in Moscow during Game 8 on September 28,
2002. The dramatic curve of the Series reached its peak.
With 7:04 left in the series, Cournoyer ties the score.
All of a sudden, a strange man appears on the ice. He
doesn't wear skates or Team Canada 1972 jersey and looks
like one of the tourists who took the wrong path after
several drinks in the bar. He seems really upset by something
and shows a weird salute to the 15,000 crowd of the Luzhniki
stadium in Moscow.
Few of the average Russian sports fans knew that the
name of that man was Alan EAGLESON, Canadian hockey
tsar and one of the most powerful people in Canada, who
was just rescued by Peter
Mahovlich from the hands of Moscow police…
Who wrote letters asking the courts
to be lenient on Alan Eagleson?
Eagleson's story is a story of a man who went from being
the most powerful tycoon in the NHL and Canada to an oblivious
life of a self-confessed corrupted criminal. Today, it's
proven in court that for decades of his power, Eagleson
was gaining hundreds of thousands of dollars by conducting
multiple hockey scams - from ripping-off his clients to
major international deals.
By many accounts, Eagleson story is one of the darkest
pages in the NHL history. With hockey being more than
just a game in Canada, his connections with the Canadian
politicians make his story more than just a shameful moment
in the history of pro hockey.
Ironically, the hockey world needed someone like Eagleson
to break the wall around the NHL of the 1970s and to set
up the most fascinating international tournaments - the
1972 Summit Series and the 1976 Canada Cup. Sometimes,
I think that it was Eagleson's lack of personal and business
principles that actually helped to break the hostile hockey
environment in the middle of the Cold War. At least, there
is no doubt that the whole Series took place in 1972 due
to the involvement of Eagleson. By many accounts, he was
the one who actually brought the top NHL talent to the
While doing my research, I accidentally found a web site
selling a memorable Team Canada 1972 group shot where
Eagleson is sitting in the middle of the front row. Interesting
enough, Eagleson's name was not in the listing of the
people below the picture. Regardless of his motivation,
Eagleson was one of the key organizers of the Series and
deserves, at least, some credit in the historical record
of the 1972 Summit Series.
It happened in Moscow on September 28, 2002. With
7:04 left in Game 8, a strange looking man jumped on the
ice and greeted the crowd with, what one argued, was a
controversial "middle finger" salute. The whole episode
was barely a good example of sports diplomacy. It was
later edited out from many sports videos and TV programs.
Ironically, Russian audience didn't adequately react to
the "salute" because the controversial gesture actually
means nothing in Russia.
Note: Special thanks to Tom Benjamin,
Lloyd Davis, John Serrati and Craig Wallace for their
contribution and opinions in preparation of this article.