GLENS FALLS, NY – Eight candidates have been nominated and are being considered for the 2019-20 class of the Adirondack Hockey Hall of Fame based at the Cool Insuring Arena.
The group is comprised of four players – Sylvain Cloutier, Frank Littlejohn, Geordie Robertson and Gary Shuchuk – and four builders – H. Douglas “Doug” Burch, Mike Kane, Dan Miner and Joe Vogel.
The inductees will be chosen by the AHHOF selection committee in December and will be formally welcomed into the AHHOF during the Adirondack Thunder’s game vs. the Maine Mariners on Saturday, February 22nd, 2020.
Each of the players being considered this year were significant contributors while members of teams based in Glens Falls. The four men listed as “builders” had an impact off the ice to the birth and growth of hockey in the region.
A fan vote will commence online to assist the AHHOF committee in making its final decision on who will be honored this season.
The complete list of 2019-20 candidates:
Sylvain Cloutier – During his long, globe-trotting professional career, Cloutier played for three Adirondack teams, the Red Wings in the American Hockey League and the IceHawks and Frostbite of the United Hockey League.
Cloutier played a total of 461 games for Glens Falls-based teams, second only to Glenn Merkosky’s 494. His 287 games with the Red Wings puts him 10th on the franchise’s career list.
A native of Mont-Laurier QC, Cloutier played in 565 AHL games and recorded 274 points (86 goals, 188 assists) during his career. He started his pro career in Glens Falls and compiled 148 points with the Red Wings.
Frank Littlejohn – Littlejohn played in Glens Falls for five seasons: four with the Adirondack IceHawks and one with the Adirondack Frostbite, both in the UHL. In his 328 regular-season and playoff games for Adirondack he registered 144 goals and 257 points.
The Oshawa, ON native played 15 AHL games, 89 ECHL games, 67 IHL games and 478 UHL games. Littlejohn recorded 222 goals and 157 assists in his 478 UHL games which also saw him gather 1,688 penalty minutes. While playing for the IceHawks, Littlejohn racked up 1,051 penalty minutes, including a career high 306 PIMs in 2002-03.
Geordie Robertson – The leading regular-season scorer on Adirondack’s 1985-86 championship team, Robertson spent parts of 10 seasons in the American Hockey League.
During his time the AHL, Robertson played in 531 regular season games and 73 postseason contests, averaging 1.10 points a game. In ‘85-‘86 season, his first with Adirondack, he racked up 92 points (36 goals, 56 assists) in 79 games.
Prior to his time with Adirondack, Robertson was a member of the Calder Cup Champion Rochester Americans in 1982-83.
Robertson played 172 games in Glens Falls and recorded 187 points in his two and a half seasons. He stands 11th on the Red Wings’ career scoring list.
Gary Shuchuk – After a standout collegiate career at the University of Wisconsin, Shuchuk joined the Red Wings organization and was a member of Adirondack’s fourth and final AHL title. While with the Badgers, the Edmonton, AB native was part of the 1989-90 NCAA National Championship squad and also earned first-team All-American honors.
Shuchuk played the majority of three seasons in Glens Falls where he recorded 204 points (79 goals, 125 assists), making him the ninth-leading scorer on the franchise points list. His 185 games played is the fewest of any player in the top 10. He collected 13 points (4 goals, 9 assists) in 19 games during the Red Wings’ Calder Cup run in 1991-92 and was second on the team in regular-season points. Shuchuk went on to play 136 NHL games with the Los Angeles Kings following his time with the Red Wings.
H. Douglas “Doug” Burch – For more than 40 years, Burch played an important role in the development and growth of hockey in the Capital Region and the Adirondacks.
Burch was a member of the management team that Ned Harkness formed to lay the groundwork for the highly successful launch of the Adirondack Red Wings in the American Hockey League in 1979. He was the student manager of Harkness’ hockey team at Union College in Schenectady and followed his mentor to Glens Falls, where he began his professional hockey career as the Director of Public Relations and Marketing. He wore many hats in those critical early years of the Adirondack franchise and was deeply involved in sales and the day-to-day operations of the hockey team
In 1982, Burch moved to Lake Placid with Harkness, where he became the Vice President of Corporate Marketing for the Olympic Regional Development Authority. After more than a decade with ORDA, Burch returned to the AHL in 1993 as the president of the Albany River Rats, a position he held until 1998. In 1995, the year the River Rats won the Calder Cup, Burch was named winner of the James C. Hendy Memorial Award, given to the executive who has made the most outstanding contribution to the American Hockey League.
Burch later returned to Glens Falls and served as the executive director of the Tri-County United Way. He was very active in the community, successfully pushed for the creation of the Adirondack Hockey Hall of Fame, which he chaired, and served on the board of directors of the Glens Falls Civic Center Foundation from 2002 until his death in 2018.
Mike Kane – As a journalist in Glens Falls and Schenectady, Kane covered the founding of the Adirondack Red Wings and reported on the team throughout its 20 seasons. He is the author of the book Minor in Name Only: The History of the Adirondack Red Wings, published in 1994.
Kane is the only three-time winner of the James Ellery Award presented by the AHL for outstanding coverage of the league, winning it in 1982-83, 1987-88 and again in 1989-90. The award has been presented annually in some form since 1964-65. He also covered many non-Red Wings hockey stories during his long newspaper career in the Capital Region.
A graduate of Queensbury High School and SUNY Potsdam, Kane was a sports writer and editor at the Post-Star for three years and moved to the Schenectady Gazette in 1979, a few weeks before the Red Wings’ training camp opened in Glens Falls. He is the only writer to cover the Red Wings from their debut to their move to Grand Rapids, Mich.
Kane also served as the AHL correspondent for The Hockey News from 1982-1990.
Dan Miner – Since 1985, Miner has been involved with every one of the professional hockey teams that have called Glens Falls home. He began his long run as a radio reporter and has been the public address announcer at the arena since 1999.
A 1983 graduate of Whitehall High School and a 1985 graduate of SUNY Adirondack, Miner started covering the Red Wings the year he earned his college degree at WIPS/WXTY in Ticonderoga. In 1991, he shifted to WENU/WSTL in Queensbury, while still covering the Red Wings. A year later, Miner started the first weekly hockey show “Red Wings Wrap”, the same year he became the In-Arena Host for the team.
Miner was named the public address announcer for the Adirondack IceHawks in 1999 and still continues his PA duties for the Adirondack Thunder. He started a Monday night hockey radio program about the IceHawks on WCKM that has transitioned into what is now known as “On Center Ice.” He retired from hosting that program at the end of the 2018-19 season.
Joe Vogel – Though Glens Falls native Joe Vogel never played the game on a competitive level, he was one of the founding fathers of the program that became the Adirondack Youth Hockey Association. When the Adirondack Red Wings arrived in 1979, he began a long career as an off-ice official.
Vogel and Tom Kean helped form the Glens Falls Hockey Club in 1977, which began play outdoors. At the suggestion of Ned Harkness, the organization adopted a more regional approach as the AYHA. Vogel served as president, scheduler and coach in the AYHA. He was part of the group that advocated for the construction of the Fire Road Rink in Glens Falls.
One of the young players who learned the basics in the AYHA was Vogel’s son, Jason, who became a hockey player at Glens Falls High School, Athol Murray College of Notre Dame in Saskatchewan and Cornell University, where he skated on a line with Joe Nieuwendyk. Jason Vogel is now Vice President for Sports Team Operations at Madison Square Garden.
With the Red Wings, Vogel, who died in 2012, was a goal judge, and then moved upstairs with Lou Dufresne and John Pohl as part of the official statistics crew.