Hockey: 'Chico' to finally get Stanley Cup
Twenty-five years have been worth the wait for Glenn "Chico" Resch. During the 1979-80 season, the Brainerd/Emily resident was a goaltender for the New York Islanders when they won their first Stanley Cup championship. According to Wikipedia, the...
Twenty-five years have been worth the wait for Glenn "Chico" Resch.
During the 1979-80 season, the Brainerd/Emily resident was a goaltender for the New York Islanders when they won their first Stanley Cup championship. According to Wikipedia, the tradition of each Stanley Cup winning player having a day with the trophy didn't begin until 1994 so Resch never had his day with the coveted chalice.
That situation will be rectified late Saturday night when Resch picks up Howie Borrow, one of four Keepers of the Cup, in the Twin Cities and transports him and the Cup to Brainerd.
Age: 67 (July 10, 1948)
Birthplace: Moose Jaw, SK, CAN
Residence: Brainerd & Emily
NHL teams: New York Islanders, Colorado Rockies, New Jersey Devils, Philadelphia Flyers
NHL draft: Undrafted
NHL career: 1973-74 through 1986-87
Resch, 67, plans to have the Cup on display in the lobby of the Journey North Church in Baxter from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday and the public is invited to see it.
Then he will have a private viewing at his north Brainerd home.
Resch will bring it to Takedown Gym on Highway 371 North from about 4:45 to 6 p.m. There is no charge to see the Cup. There will be a small fee to have a picture taken with it. All proceeds will go the Brainerd Blue Line Boosters.
Finally, Resch will take the Cup to the Maslowski Wellness and Research Center, 20 1st St. N.E., Wadena, from about 7 to 8:30 p.m.
"Brainerd has had the Cup a few times," he said. "They've never had it in Wadena. They have a nice, vibrant hockey group over there. They're all excited about it. They suggested that I bring it there."
Resch said there are a few rules for people who view the Cup.
"They can touch it, they can hug it, they can kiss it," he said, "but the only people that can lift it over their head are people whose names are on the Cup so I can lift it.
"I said to a friend of mine maybe I could pretend I'm stumbling, you're behind me and you could grab it. But stumbling around at my age I could hurt myself."
Resch played 13 seasons with the Islanders, Colorado Rockies, New Jersey Devils and Philadelphia Flyers. After retiring following the 1986-87 season, he began a career in broadcasting as an analyst on Canadian Broadcasting Corporation's "Hockey Night in Canada." In the 1987-88 and 1988-89 seasons, he was color analyst for the Minnesota North Stars.
Following a stint as a general manager for a Canadian junior hockey team and as a pro coach, Resch became a commentator for Fox Sports NY (renamed Madison Square Garden Plus) for New Jersey Devils games.
He retired from the NHL after calling his last Devils game April 13, 2014.
"MSG, as a gift for my retirement last year, said they would arrange with (NHL commissioner) Gary Bettman that I could have the Cup for a day," Resch said. "I was going to do it last spring, but it was during the state playoffs for Bantams, Pee Wees (etc.) They thought that wasn't going to work so we rescheduled it for this time."
Sunday will cap a fulfilling fall for Resch. On Oct. 30, the former University of Minnesota Bulldog had his No. 1 jersey retired during a ceremony at AMSOIL Arena in Duluth. He played for the Bulldogs from 1968-69 through 1970-71 (freshmen were ineligible his first year).
Resch became only the fourth UMD Bulldog in any men's sport to have his jersey retired joining Brett Hull, Keith Christiansen and Bill Watson in that exclusive club. Resch said when UMD athletic director Josh Berlo informed him of the honor he was caught off guard.
"I apologized to him later," Resch said. "I said 'I'm sorry that I didn't seem more excited, but that wasn't what I thought you wanted to talk to me about.
"My first thought was, 'Are you sure about this? Did you see me play?' and I said to myself there's no video from the 60s and 70s. The older I get the better I was.
"For this to happen, it was like wow. I kept saying wow afterward. It's been an incredible run."
Resch is in his second season as goalie coach for the Brainerd Warriors boys hockey team. The Warriors open the season Nov. 28 at Buffalo.
"We've got three freshmen that are exceptional. I won't mention their names," Resch said. "We've got a goalie - if I don't screw him up - who I think could have a shot at being all-state this year - Brady Mick. We've just got a lot of depth this year that we haven't had in the past.
"Every Brainerd High School hockey coach's goal has had to be let's be the first to get to the state tournament and we're no exception. That's really what we have thought about and a hot goalie can get you there. We're all very excited about this year."
After almost 50 years at various levels of hockey as a player, coach or broadcaster, Resch and his wife, Diane, plan to be fixtures in the lakes area in retirement.
"I love Brainerd," he said. "I've traveled everywhere. There are other nice areas, but there is no place that has all the things you're looking for in quality of life than here and it has things you don't want like traffic and craziness. It's been great this fall, with the incredible weather we've had. At my age, bring on global warming. Bring it on baby."
MIKE BIALKA may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 218-855-5861. Follow on Twitter at www.twitter.com/bertsballpark .