Re-post: Undrafted Players and the Hockey Hall of Fame

A question has been nagging at me: who is the first un-drafted National Hockey League player in the Hockey Hall of Fame?

Well, the fast answer is the entire 1945 class of inductees.

But let’s pretend we want to delve a little deeper and set a few parameters.

In 1963, the The National Hockey League Amateur Draft was the first entry draft to the NHL. Previous to that, players were found and signed by teams on their own.  Only North American players were drafted in the original conception of the draft, and even when European players began to defect to North America, they were ineligible for the draft and usually initially played for the team that helped them leave their home countries.

Peter Stastny

With players of all nationalities eligible for the draft, Tomas Jonsson (Sweden) became the first drafted European player as the 4th pick in the second round (29th overall).The draft continued in the original fashion until 1979, when the NHL absorbed the World Hockey Association, and the rules changed so that any North American player from 18-20 years old and any European player of any age can be drafted in the newly termed NHL Entry Draft.

The following year, Peter Stastny defected from Czechoslovakia with his brother Anton after winning the European Cup in Innsbruck, Austria. Having never been drafted, but played in the NHL with the now (sadly) defunct Quebec Nordiques,  the New Jersey Devils, and the St. Louis Blues, he becomes eligible to become the first un-drafted player to be inducted to the HHOF, and indeed, he did so. In 1998, three years after retiring in a Blues kit, Peter the Great was inducted into the HOF with Roy Conacher, Michel Goulet, and Athol Murray becoming the first un-drafted player in the HHOF by this definition.

Some of you might cry foul and say that Björe Salming was the first un-drafted player inducted. But, given that he wasn’t eligible to be drafted before his rookie year in the NHL (six years before the draft rules changed), he was disqualified to be the first un-drafted inductee in the context of my question.  It’s only fair that the first be after everyone is eligible for the draft, and given that European players weren’t eligible in 1973 to be drafted, well, you get my point.

Regardless of whom you feel is the rightful first un-drafted NHL Hockey Hall of Famer, there is quite the illustrious list of un-drafted NHL players in the HHOF.  Eddie Belfour, Dino Ciccarelli, Joe Mullen, Adam Oates, the list goes on.

Only goes to show you that not being drafted isn’t the end of the world.

Sources here, here, and here.

Out of Sight, Out of Mind

At the end of last year, I made the leap to open a higher yield savings account with a bank I don’t usually do business with. I did this for a couple reasons.

1. 0.90% more interest – um, yes please!
2. Out of Sight, Out of mind.

I know that savings is important. I know it in my brain. I know it every time I buy something I shouldn’t or stretch myself a little thin to be able to do something I want to do that I can’t quite afford. I know it when I log in and look at my credit union savings that has nothing in it because, at .10% what’s the damn point? Why save it when I could put that money on my student loans, or my house, or insert other debt item here that can apply.

I know my mother is screaming at the screen right now. And you probably are too.

“BECAUSE WHAT IF YOUR CAR BREAKS DOWN? OR YOU LOSE YOUR JOB? OR THE APOCALYPSE?!”

Breathe, Mom, I’m sorry. I’m fixing it. I heard you, I just needed to find a way to make it work for me.

So, there are a couple of things I log in every month to pay. The mortgage, a non-credit union credit card, and my student loans (because I’m paying ahead on those and the assholes who administer the site don’t continue to take the monthly payment out of a section that you’re paid ahead on). Which means I can see all the money sitting there, waiting for me to put on debt X, Y, or Z. Or to book the next vacation or whatever. To eliminate that I opened an online savings account that I use only for savings. I have absolutely nothing that comes out of that account.

This way, the money is not taunting me, telling me that it would be better spent on student loans, and I can get a nice nest egg.

I didn’t really mention this before, but part of the reason that I also chose to do this now instead of later is because I need to be able to handle paying bills, debt reduction, and create savings all at once. I started out using a Dave Ramsey Trello board to take control. However, a couple months in I realized that although it’s good advice to follow, his plan is for people who are capital I In Debt.

Being able to make progress towards my savings and debt reduction at the same time is absolutely what I need. I am not a patient woman by any means, but I will end up doing myself a favor by doing them at the same time. Most of my debt is my mortgage and student loans, which, for reasons unbeknownst to me, are considered “good” debt. That term really rankles me when applied to student loans.

The best part about feeling in control of my money is that I feel like a General commanding my troops. All of dollars are little soldiers doing my bidding. I look forward to being debt free, and I’m working on accepting that I am not going to be so by 30.

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