A chip off the old iconic block-Mark Howe is now a Hockey Hall of Famer just like his dad Gordie

Mark and me at Staples Center earlier this year

I met Mark Howe about 15 years ago when I was early into my 5 year stint as the now defunct International Hockey League Long Beach Ice Dogs play by play announcer. Mark already had a few years under his belt as a top scout for the Detroit Red Wings and I’d run into him from time to time (mostly in the upper midwest). And when I often desperately needed a between periods guest on the radio, who better than a potential future hall of fame defenseman and the son of Mr. Hockey to get on a semi-regular basis? And we’ve remained friends from a distance ever since.

So it was definitely exciting for me on Tuesday when I heard the news that Mark Howe was elected as part of the 2011 Hockey Hall of Fame class of 4 along with Joe Nieuwendyk, Ed Belfour and Doug Gilmour. And as you’ll hear in the our interview, Mark is the only one of the foursome to not have won a Stanley Cup and of course that still bothers him to this day.

That just means that Mark had to get to ‘The Hall’ via a different route. Like starting out as a forward playing on a WHA line In Houston and New England with his Hall of Fame father Gordie and brother Marty (winning 2 Avco Cups together in 6 WHA seasons) and then later switching to defense and finished with 197 goals and 742 points in 929 NHL games with the Hartford Whalers (3 years), Philadelphia Flyers (10 years) and Detroit Red Wings (final 3 seasons).

Mr. and Mrs. Hockey and sons

Mark is now in his 19th year as the Detroit Red Wings Director of Scouting and is already a U.S. Hockey Hall of Famer and is in the Flyers HOF as well. And now he tells me that there’s a 4th Hall of Fame announcement coming next week (and it’s up to you to guess where?). He also surprised me with another announcement–he’s about to become a Grandpa this winter for a first time too! So everything’s coming up roses for the Howe family and what a night it’ll be on November 14 in Toronto when hopefully Mark will don his now 83 year old Dad’s Red Wings #9 for the first and only time for all to celebrate one of hockey’s greatest families. And if you ever met any of them…they are all worthy of the people Hall of Fame.

Mark Howe with Ted Sobel:

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About Ted Sobel

Award winning sportscaster/journalist covering major events around the world since 1973. Please check out my deep audio vault and follow me on twitter (@tedsobelsports).
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