Hershey Bears Alumni: October 2006

Hershey Bears of the past. A Blog devoted to the past players of the American Hockey Leagues Hershey Bears. Once a week a former Bear will be profiled. Learn about the individuals who made the Bears the greatest team in minor league hockey history.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Todd Bidner

In 1984-85 Todd Bidner had his most successful professional hockey season to date. As a member of the AHL's Adirondack Red Wings, Bidner contributed 57 points. By that time, the center had already put his time in with the Hershey Bears and even played 12 games with the Washington Capitals. The 1985-86 season was spent over the pond in Scotland playing for the Fife Flyers. In 31 games, Bidner scored an amazing 123 points. However, that was nothing compared to the following season in the British National League with the Peterborough Pirates. The Petrolia, Ontario native put up Gretzky like numbers. In a mere 29 games, Bidner registered 191 points - including 79 goals. Eight and nine point games were not uncommon. Bidner spent 15 years in the United Kingdom becoming one of the great stars of modern hockey history.
Today, Bidner and his wife live in Camlachie, Ontario with their two kids. Bidner serves as an Assistant Coach of the OHL's London Knights.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Alec Tidey

It's easy to catch up with former Hershey Bears star Alec Tidey. Check out Tidey's Trophies & Promotional Products on the web or while in North Vancouver. Tidey opened the business back in 1980 and the it is still going strong.
As a member of the Bears, Tidey played 202 games in the late 1970's and registered 157 points over parts of three seasons.
Tidey played in both the WHA with the San Diego Mariners and in the NHL with the Buffalo Sabres and Edmonton Oilers. The Vancouver native played with Wayne Gretzky in the 'Great Ones' initial NHL season.
Oddly enough, has played numerous games as a member of the Vancouver Canucks Alumni team although he never played for the team

Friday, October 20, 2006

Nelson Burton

108 games for the Hershey Bears in the late 1970's. Doesn't seem like enough time to pickup 527 penalty minutes, but Nelson Burton worked hard at it. In 1978-1979 his 204 minutes was third on the Bears, behind Archie Henderson and Gary Rissling. It was during his two seasons in Hershey in which Burton made it to the NHL with the Washington Capitals. Although the Sydney, Nova Scotia native played only 8 games in the NHL, he did manage to score a single goal. The single goal beat Hall of Fame goaltender Tony Esposito.
After Hershey and Washington, there were stops in Nashville, Erie, Nova Scotia, Syracuse and Baltimore.
Today, Burton operates Nelson Hockey at the Laurel Gardens Ice House while at the same time coaching the Tri-City Eagle Midget AA team. He is also the Head Coach of the University of Maryland Terrapins Ice Hockey club.
Check out Hometown Hockey for features on other minor league players of the past

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Bill Armstrong

Bill Armstrong was born in London, Ontario and has returned to London as a Real Estate Agent. In between, Armstrong had a successful professional career which included 192 games with the Hershey Bears from 1989-1992. Armstrong scored 72 goals during his stay in Chocolatetown.
The 40 year old made his only NHL appearance during the 1990-91 season with the Philadelphia Flyers. Other Pro stops included Utica, Albany, Cincinnati, Indianapolis, Detroit , Orlando, Kansas City and Grand Rapids.
During his career, Armstrong perfected the lacrosse style goal University Of Michigan's Mike Legg made famous in 1997. Truth be known, it was Armstrong who taught the London-native Legg how to do the move. Armstrong scored a 8 lacrosse style goals during his pro career.
Armstong is married with a son and daugter. He also coached the Senior "A" Brantford Blast during the 2005-2006 season. This season, Armstrong serves as Assistant Coach of the Guelph Storm of the OHL.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Mike Stothers

Mike Stothers is back for another season as Head Coach of the Owen Sound Attack of the Ontario Hockey League. The Toronto native played from 1984 to 1992 with the Hershey Bears. He later served as Assistant Coach for the Bears in the mid-1990s. While with the Bears, Stothers piled up 1519 minutes in penalties and remains the all-time leader in time in the box.
Stothers did manage to play 30 NHL games with the Philadelphia Flyers and hometown Toronto Maple Leafs. The defenseman was originally a first round pick of the Flyers in 1980.
Stothers is married with two daughters and enjoys spending family time at his cottage during the summer months.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Bruce Cline

After hockey, Bruce Cline worked in many fields. Cline was a restaurant owner, a hockey stick salesman, real estate agent and owner of two clothing stores. Today, Cline and his wife of 52 years, Elyse, are settled in Drummondville, Quebec. The Massawippi, PQ native still finds time to skate and plays golf at every opportunity.
The right wing spent most of the mid 1960's in Hershey with the Bears. In 299 games, Cline scored 97 goals and 229 points. Cline also played in the AHL with the Providence Reds, Buffalo Bisons and Springfield Indians. He was AHL rookie of the year in 1956 and won four Calder Cups. When it was all said and done, Cline produced 773 AHL points
His NHL consisted of 30 games with the New York Rangers during the 1956-57 season.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Greg Theberge

"The Bears organization was very good to me as a player and as a member of the community," according to Greg Theberge. The defenseman has great success with Hershey making the all-star team and breaking Ralph Keller's record for points by a d-man in a single season. Of course there was also the Calder Cup victory of 1980.
Hockey has always been a big part of Theberge's life as his grandfather Dit Clapper won three Stanley Cups with the Boston Bruins and is a member of the Hockey hall of Fame.
Theberge spent parts of 5 seasons in the NHL with the Washington Capitals before embarking on a career in Europe.
The Peterborough native eventually moved to North Bay, Ontario and remains active in coaching.