Saturday, January 27, 2007

Spirit announce OHL All-Star Classic honorees

The Saginaw Spirit announced the honorary general manger and honorary captains for the 2007 OHL All-Star Classic.

Spirit operations consultant Wren Blair was named the honorary general manager for the event and Detroit Red Wings general manager Ken Holland and former NHLer Pat Stapleton were named as honorary captains.

Blair was instrumental in assisting Spirit owner Dick Garber in bringing the Spirit franchise to Saginaw in 2002. He founded the Saginaw Gears franchise in 1972 and managed them to two Turner Cup Championships. Blair also has the distinction of signing hockey legend Bobby Orr to his first NHL contract.

Holland will represent the OHL Eastern Conference at the All-Star Classic. He spent time in the NHL as a goalie before joining the Red Wings organization as a scout in 1983. He became the team's GM in 1997. The Wings have finished with over 100 points in all but one season and have yet to miss a playoff appearance under Holland's leadership.

Stapleton will represent the OHL Western Conference. Stapleton played for the Spirit franchise back when it was known as the St. Catharines Teepees. He began his NHL career in 1961 and saw action with the Boston Bruins and the Chicago Blackhawks. Stapleton helped Canada seize victory in the 1972 Summit Series against the USSR.

The 2007 OHL All-Star Classic will be held in Saginaw this week, January 30 and 31.

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