On Saturday February 1, Los Angeles Kings honored defenseman Robyn Regehr on ice before the start of the game for his 1,000th career NHL game. For a career that almost wasn’t, his story is one that’s sure to inspire, be proud of, pretty significant, and never left his mind even during the toughest points.
Regehr was born in Brazil on April 19, 1980, after nine months his family moved to Indonesia and finally when he was seven his family settled in Canada, Rosthern, Saskatchewan, where he picked up the sport of hockey.
From 1995-99 he played for the WHL, and was drafted by the NHL in 1998, 19th overall by the Colorado Avalanche but was traded to the Calgary Flames.
The most significant moment in Regehr’s life came when he picked up a copy of The Hockey News as a 16-year-old and saw himself as a top 10 prospect. "I was one of them," he said. "That was probably the most memorable time where it hit me and I was saying, 'You know what? I can do this. I have a really good chance of doing this for a career.' It still stands out in my mind."
His career in the NHL nearly ended before it started as in the summer of 1999 on July 4, when he was heading home on Highway 11 northeast of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, when a car coming from the oncoming lane swerved and collided head-on to the car Regehr was driving.
He was driving the car with his elder brother and two female friends, the lives of the two people in the car that collided into them ended and Regehr was left with two broken legs.
Regehr had surgery to have two screws inserted in his left leg and was hospitalized for nine days. Doctors initially said that Regehr would likely not play again, but Regehr proved them wrong. He had a short time and big goal to reach. He went back to playing hockey within four months after the accident when doctors said he wouldn’t skate until the end of the year. He tried out during the training camp that season, and made his NHL debut with the Flames in October and was the youngest nominee for the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy.
Besides the Flames he has played for the Buffalo Sabres and of course now the Kings. Coach Darryl Sutter has coached Regehr when he was with the Flames and said about Regehr’s 1000th game, said considering everything Regehr had to go through the accident, changes to defense due to the lockout and so on it goes to show his character that he adapted and pulled through and his milestone is just that much more significant.
The 6’ 3” 223-pound defenseman in a 1,000 career NHL games with the Flames, Sabres and Kings, has recorded 180 points (31G-149A), plus-15 rating, and 917 penalty minutes. In 59 playoff contests, he has recorded 16 points (3G-13A), a plus-1 rating and 34 penalty minutes.
Congratulations Robyn Regehr!
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