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|1984 NHL DRAFT PICK|
No. 144 overall by Buffalo Sabres
Height: 5-11 Weight: 180
|BEFORE THE DRAFT|
Kelowna (WHL) |
Pincher Creek, Alberta
PRE-DRAFT AWARDS AND HONORS
Began his minor hockey career as a defenseman and did not begin playing goal
until he was 10 years old. ...
Childhood friend and teammate of former NHL player Doug Houda.
| Debut: December 2, 1988 (Hartford at
35 (Buffalo); 35, 34 (Minnesota/Dallas); 43 (Phoenix)
Cup: Never won. Playing Status: Retired April 15, 1998
|CAREER NHL STATISTICS|
BUF, MIN/DAL, PHO||191
|CAREER NHL PLAYOFF STATISTICS|
AWARDS AND HONORS
Dallas Most Improved Player: 1993-94
1993-94: Played on first Dallas Stars team.
1996-97: Played on first Phoenix Coyotes team.
Made his NHL debut by playing four minutes in relief of Daren Puppa during a
loss to Hartford. ... Made his first NHL start in Buffalo's 5-3 loss at Los
Angeles on Feb. 4, 1989. ... Missed part of 1992-93 season with
hyper-extended right knee, an injury suffered during Minnesota's Feb. 17,
1993, game vs. Los Angeles. He did not return to action until Minnesota's
Feb. 25, 1993, game at Boston. ... Was on Minnesota team that relocated to Dallas
on June 9, 1993. ... Named Dallas Player of Month for November 1993. ...
Named NHL Co-Player of the Week (with Dallas teammate Andy Moog) for the
week ending March 5, 1995. ... Missed part of 1995 season with broken ring
finger knuckle on right hand, an injury suffered when he punched a metal
locker-room door following Dallas' March 16, 1995, loss at Detroit -- a game
from which he had been pulled in the second period. On April 5, 1995, he was
sent down to Kalamazoo (IHL) for a three-day conditioning stint, and he did
not return to NHL action until Dallas' April 11, 1995, game vs. Detroit. ...
Missed part of 1995 season with strained back, an injury suffered during
Dallas' April 11, 1995, game vs. Detroit. He did not return to action until
Dallas' April 22, 1995, game vs. Toronto. ... Missed part of 1995-96 season
with strained hamstring, an injury suffered during first period of Dallas'
Jan. 15, 1996, game at Philadelphia. He did not return to action until
Dallas' Jan. 31, 1996, game vs. N.Y. Rangers. ... Signed with Phoenix as a
Group V unrestricted free
agent on July 2, 1996.
Career Ended by Injury: During the
Phoenix's Jan. 3, 1997, game vs. Washington, Wakaluk reported hearing a pop
in his right knee. Although he sensed something was wrong, he managed to
finish the game, which the Capitals won 3-0. After the game, Phoenix doctors
discovered torn cartilage in the knee. The
injury required arthroscopic surgery on Jan. 8, 1997, and the Coyotes placed Wakaluk on injured reserve the following day.
At the time, it did not appear that the knee problems would lead to the end
of his career, and Wakaluk appeared close
to coming back when doctors found swelling and fluid buildup in the joint,
necessitating another arthroscopic surgery in late February 1997. On March
27, 1997, Wakaluk returned to practice, but was unable to play in games.
During the summer of 1997, he had another arthroscopic surgery on his right
knee, but was unable to participate in Phoenix's 1997 training camp because
he was still recovering from the injury. In early October 1997, doctors
found torn cartilage and further damage to Wakaluk's right knee,
prompting them to perform a fourth surgery. By late January 1998, Wakaluk
was able to participate in Phoenix practices, but still unable to play. He
had not participated in a full practice in a full year, and now had the
added challenge of cracking Phoenix's lineup ahead of Nikolai Khabibulin's
backup, Jimmy Waite. Although he thought he could come back to the Coyotes
after the 1998 Olympic break, Wakaluk's knee did not hold up in practice,
and he was again sidelined with no end in sight. By early April 1998,
Wakaluk told Phoenix general manager Bobby Smith that he would retire rather
than continue his comeback attempt, and on April 15, 1998, without much
fanfare, Wakaluk officially ended his NHL career.
|Post-Draft Teams: Kelowna, Spokane (WHL);
Rochester (AHL); Kalamazoo (IHL)|
AWARDS AND HONORS
AHL Calder Cup: 1987 (Rochester)
AHL Holmes Trophy (Lowest Team GAA): 1990--91 (Rochester) (co-winner
with David Littman)
Rochester MVP: 1989-90
AHL Playoffs Goalie Games-Played Leader: 1990 (Rochester) (17)
AHL Playoffs Minutes Leader: 1990 (Rochester) (1,001 minutes)
AHL Playoffs Goals-Against Average Leader: 1990 (Roch.) (3.01)
AHL Playoffs Wins Leader: 1990 (Rochester) (10 wins)
1990-91: Played on AHL regular-season champion (Rochester)
Coaching Career: Named Kamloops (WHL) goaltending coach on Aug. 27,
1999, and remained in that position through 2000-01 season. ... Named Crowsnest-Pass (AJHL) goaltending coach prior
to 2001-02 season and remained in that position through 2001-02 season. ...
Named Vancouver (WHL) goaltending coach prior to 2002-03 season and remained
in that position through 2003-04 season. ... Named Calgary (WHL) goaltending
coach on May 18, 2004, and remained in that position through 2004-05 season.
Miscellaneous: Was on Kelowna (WHL)
team that relocated to Spokane prior to the 1985-86 season.
Personal: Full name is Darcy W. Wakaluk.
Wakaluk's Goal: During the 1987-88
season, Wakaluk joined a select group of professional goaltenders and made
AHL history by scoring a goal in Rochester's Dec. 5, 1987, game at Utica.
With time running out, and the Americans leading the Devils 4-2, Wakaluk
blocked a long Utica shot and knocked the puck to the ice. He then lofted it
over the oncoming Utica players--including both defensemen-- toward Utica's
empty net. Only one second remained as the puck crossed the goal line,
making Wakaluk the first goaltender in AHL history to score a goal. He was
also only the third goalie in North American pro hockey history to be
credited with a goal and only the second, following the CHL's Michel Plasse,
to do it by actually shooting the puck himself. Three days after Wakaluk
scored, Ron Hextall stunned the hockey world by doing the very same thing --
becoming the first NHL goalie to fire the puck the length of the ice into an
open net for a goal.
Skating Out: The 1987-88 AHL season was a monumental one for
Darcy Wakaluk. Not only did the 21-year-old goaltender score a goal that
year, but he also had the opportunity to add to his offensive highlight reel
when he took a shift at left wing during Rochester's Jan. 10, 1988, game at
Nova Scotia. Wakaluk managed one shot on goal during his third-period
appearance. He had dressed for the game as a forward because injuries and
recalls to Buffalo had cut the Americans down to 11 skaters. At the urging
of Buffalo player development director Joe Crozier, coach John Van Boxmeer
made the decision to use Wakaluk at forward with the hope that he could keep
him on the bench for most of the game. Crozier had done the same thing with
a young Gerry Cheevers when Crozier as Rochester's coach during the 1960s.
"He (Wakaluk) had as much business being out there as anybody else," said
Van Boxmeer after the game. "At least he had a scoring chance. Some guys go
five games without a chance."
|HOW HE GOT AWAY|
|TRADE: Buffalo traded Wakaluk to Minnesota in
exchange for future considerations (1991 eighth-round pick -- Jiri Kuntos --
and 1992 fifth-round pick
-- later traded) on May 26, 1991.||
|Tier II/Jr. B:
|U.S. Junior B:
|Hall of Fame: