THE INTERVIEW: Dave Simpson

Dave Simpson
Part I of II: December 2016

If Alex P. Keaton was as skilled at hockey as he was in business and politics, then you’d have David Simpson. Of course, Keaton was an over-achieving whiz kid character played by Michael J. Fox in the 1980s sitcom, Family Ties. That show debuted in 1982, the same year Simpson took the hockey world by storm. But it would be in the business world where Simpson would eventually cement his name as a player respected around the globe. However, that doesn’t take away from the fact the 54-year-old Londoner had what was the most successful junior hockey season in history. The only thing missing from that 1981-82 season as captain of the London Knights was a Memorial Cup. But Simpson has more than made up for that missing ingredient.
SONY DSCHowever, Simpson doesn’t see it that way. Not at all. In fact, he says he never once dreamed about playing in the NHL. Ontario Hockey League commissioner David Branch called him “the best junior player I’ve ever seen play that really never went onto a career in the National Hockey League.” He was the CHL’s 1982 Player of the Year, sandwiched between two Hockey Hall of Famers: Dale Hawerchuk (1981) and Pat Lafontaine (1983). In that 1982 season, Simpson won more awards than any junior player in league history, and still holds the Knights’ single-season scoring record. But there would be no NHL fame.
Drafted by the New York Islanders in 1980, at the beginning of a dynasty that would earn them five straight Stanley Cup appearances and four wins, Simpson won two league championships in Indianapolis but played only a handful of pre-season NHL games with the Islanders, and later with the Vancouver Canucks. Ultimately the combination of unfortunate timing, injuries and a decision to return to school led him to retire from hockey in 1986, at age 24.
Today, Simpson is a London-based financier with a broad range of business experiences and a passion for entrepreneurship. He has financed and operated a diverse range of businesses including restaurants, golf courses (including Strathroy’s Bear Creek and London’s Greenhills clubs), aircraft leasing, oil field serves and retail. He completed an undergraduate degree (Political Science) by part-time study while he played professional hockey. Upon retirement from hockey, he completed an MBA at the Ivey Business School in 1988. Upon graduation, he began his career as an entrepreneur engaging in all aspects of corporate finance in the small business sector. In 1989, he was the co-founder of The New Enterprise Workshop, one of the earliest attempts (supported by the Provincial Government) to support fledgling entrepreneurs. In 2013, he went back to his hockey roots and penned a book, Work Hard, Have Fun & Keep Smiling: A Guide for Hockey Parents and Volunteer Coaches.
img_20161203_0004The Simpson name is hockey and business royalty in London. David’s brother, Craig, played on a line with both Mario Lemieux and Wayne Gretzky, and won two Stanley Cups with the Oilers. Craig, and sister Christine, a former Miss Teen London and standout athlete as a youngster, are two of the most respected and knowledgeable hockey broadcasters in the business. Their mother, Marion, was on the Canadian Olympic track team in 1952. The family patriarch, father Don, played Western Mustangs football under legendary coach John Metras. He established his name as a Canadian innovator and mentor in organizational development, having worked hard as an educator, historian, businessman, Third World aid administrator, researcher, consultant and entrepreneur in more than 70 countries worldwide. Including oldest sibling, Jan, the Simpson clan is, indeed, the ultimate over-achieving family.
During the 1981-82 OHL season, LondonOntarioSports.com editor Jeffrey Reed covered the Knights beat as a student reporter with Fanshawe College’s 6X-FM Radio. In their first feature-length interview since the early-1980s, Reed and Simpson met at Ivey Business School to talk about hockey and business, and everything in between. Here’s Part I of that interview.

Jeffrey Reed, Editor, LondonOntarioSports.com: Dave, when you retired from hockey, you disappeared from the game, despite the fact that just a few years earlier you were the most heralded young star in the game. In fact, you were quoted as saying, ‘Once I quit, I quit. For years I tried it ignore sports as much as I could.’ You completely shunned the sports world. That’s a huge undertaking, but it really speaks to your interests outside of hockey. Yet it’s so Dave Simpson: either you are in 100 per cent, or you’re onto other things. And competing in the business world as an entrepreneur was your calling.
Dave Simpson: You have to have something to do. It’s not just about applying it to something. You must have a goal.
Reed: Spoken like a true Ivey Business School professor.
Simpson: As soon as I retired, I worked on a major project in the summer. I got a position with a program called, the Native Business Summit. Native Canadians came to Toronto for a large conference, and I hooked up with some people to work on that. I had just retired from hockey, and I had been accepted to the joint Law MBA program here at Western. I knew I would be starting that in September. So I did that for about six weeks. I went with my girlfriend of the time, who is now my wife, 30 years later.
Reed: You and Diana attended Oakridge Secondary School together.
Simpson: Right, high school math. She’s a math whiz, an engineering professor, just retired. The two of us back then went to Trois-Pistoles. It’s a small town in Quebec where Western ran a French Immersion program. So we thought, let’s go work on our French.  So I went there from (the) Baltimore (Skipjacks in 1985-86), Pittsburgh’s farm team. My last year, I knew we were mathematically eliminated from the playoffs. Pittsburgh was bad. Baltimore was bad. I had written my GMAT business school entrance exams during the year with the team. You really have to be focused to do stuff like that. So I lined up a summer where I didn’t just sit around thinking about just playing golf and getting ready for the next hockey season, which was the traditional thing to do. I got busy right away. Six weeks of French Immersion, living with a family that did not speak English. The lady we lived with had never left the Bas-Saint-Laurent region. So I worked on my French there. And I started the MBA program, which was incredibly intense program, right in September. So as soon as I come back, I was inundated with things. To be worried about hockey was nothing I ever even thought about. They wanted me to come out and play on the MBA hockey team, so I did that. I had a little fun with them. And at that point, during my second year of business school, my brother started to have some success, because he really didn’t play at all the year I played with him down in Pittsburgh (in 1985-86).
Reed: Craig had an incredible season in 1987-88.cup-simpsons
Simpson: It was his third year in the NHL. He started the season on a line with Mario Lemieux, gets traded for Paul Coffey and finishes playing that season with Wayne Gretzky. Craig scored 56 goals that season, and won the Stanley Cup. So yes, hockey then came back into my life a bit there, to enjoy my brother’s success. But to me, hockey success was a time in my life.
Reed: Going back to my point about giving 100 per cent, you did that as a hockey player.
Simpson: I played because I really enjoyed the playing part. I really did not like the lifestyle, two hours of practice a day, getting up in the morning to skate. Then there’s nothing to do. You can get into bad habits. I’ll give you a little taste of it. The last year I played, we were in Baltimore. I got sent down from Pittsburgh. Now, Baltimore is beside one of the most fascinating cities in the world, Washington, D.C., right? So I would go to Washington during the afternoons, visit the Smithsonian Institute. I went to Congress. I toured around. It was wonderful. I’d go to Annapolis and look at all the Navy ships. But do you think I get anyone on my team to go with me that entire season? Nobody would do anything. They would say, ‘I have to go to the bank today,’ or, ‘I have to do laundry today.’ Those are things you and I would do at night or over the lunch hour. So you could get yourself into a lifestyle that is hard to break out of – living only for the game, and then after the game go the bar until the wee hours of the morning.

“I played because I really enjoyed the playing part. I really did not like the lifestyle …”.Dave Simpson

Reed: Then you become a cliché.SONY DSC
Simpson: Exactly! And I found that I just didn’t like the lifestyle. But gosh, I enjoyed the game! And you know, when you have an opportunity to score a goal, that’s exciting. I’m trying to teach the young girls that I coach now to get excited around the net when they see a loose puck.
Reed: Hearing you now, I know hockey is still in your blood. That never goes away.
Simpson:  I loved the competition. I loved getting that puck and scoring. But you have to have an outlet in life. And whether that’s business, or now for me a combination of business and speaking at Ivey, telling stories about business and life experiences to bright young people, that’s what I enjoy. That gets my adrenaline going just as much.
Reed: Do you miss competing on the ice?
Simpson: No, no. But I love to play golf. The hockey thing for me, well, timing is everything, right? In my case, it was the wrong place at the wrong time. Plus some of my personal inclinations make me the kind of guy that, when I make a decision, that’s it.
Reed: Again, my statement about either being in 100 per cent, or being out.
Simpson: I know the biggest challenge I had was, (the) New York (Islanders) were just so good when I was there (and with the Indianapolis Checkers). That team was so deep. I asked to be traded to a Canadian team. That was unusual at the time, but I did it because I thought, if I’m going to play this game, I want to be in a community where I could build a positive, long-term relationship, and it wasn’t going to be somewhere in the U.S.
Reed: You’re always thinking two or three steps ahead, planning your future. Coupled with your interests outside of hockey, that’s what made you different from most of your hockey contemporaries – different from most of today’s hockey players, if we’re honest.
Simpson: I already knew hockey wouldn’t last long for me anyhow. So, I was traded to Vancouver. New York actually went with my wishes. And when I got there, I was in really, really good shape. I was ready to go. I was pumped up. But as you know, halfway through training camp the league ruled that the trade was illegal.
Reed: The ruling has changed. Again, bad timing for you.
Simpson: By today’s standards it was a totally normal trade, but back then it wasn’t in the collective bargaining agreement. There were a whole bunch of conditional picks. If I played 20 games, New York got this. If I scored 20 goals, they would get that. And they forced Vancouver’s hand to say, ‘You’ve got to compensate New York right now.’ I had only played two exhibition games.
Reed: To borrow a phrase, you were there for a good time, not a long time, right? That’s just the way life turned out for you.
Simpson: I really enjoyed it. I had scored against Los Angeles. Then we played Edmonton. And then they sent me back to New York, stating I was New York’s property. So I called New York and said, I’m going home. I came back to Western, and finished my undergrad that I had been doing part-time and in the summers over the years. I just decided, right then and there, this is what I’m going to do. I remember Lorne Henning called me from New York. He had retired and was now coaching their team. He wanted me to come back, and I just said, Lorne, you know, this isn’t for me.
Reed: And then another turn of events occurred.

Simpson Family Collection.

Simpson Family Collection.

Simpson: Yes, that’s when it seemed everybody on that New York Islanders team got hurt. The team started to fade, which meant everybody got called up from the minors and had their opportunity. But that’s life, right?
Reed: Then another hockey door opened for you.
Simpson: I had a great experience during the Christmas holidays that year. I played for Team Canada against the Russians.
Reed: You captained that team.
Simpson: Yes, it was a wonderful experience, 10-game series all across the country. And it was the prelude to the 1988 Winter Olympics.  They were assembling a team to get ready for the ’88 Olympics in Calgary. So after that 10-game series, Dave King, who was the coach, asked me to come join them in Calgary where they would have a permanent team base. I was accepted to (University of) Calgary Law School, and so I was going to play. But there was no guarantee you were going to play in the Olympics, because they were still unclear whether the amateur rules would allow it. But I was going to do both, go to law school and play hockey. I thought that was great! And then right at the last minute, just before I was on my way to Calgary, I got a call from Pittsburgh. They had bought my rights from New York. That’s another issue. I didn’t know they still owned my rights. But they had a residual right, and New York sold my rights to Pittsburgh, who had drafted my brother. They effectively offered me too much money to not give it a try – to join my brother with Pittsburgh.
Reed: And that’s how you ended up giving hockey one last try before turning to the business world for good.
Simpson: It was one last fun attempt at it, after essentially being out of the game for a year, other than the Russian series.
Reed: I think it’s brilliant how you work opportunities into your life without putting all of your eggs in one basket. Yet again, at the same time you gave hockey a 100-per-cent effort.
Simpson: Well, at that point, joining Pittsburgh, it got hard. Pittsburgh was a poor organization at the time, in terms of what I had experienced in New York. That’s in terms of what it takes to be a champion.  Pittsburgh was nowhere near that, in terms of how they ran things. The entire atmosphere was lacking. But it was great. I got to chase around a guy by the name of Mario Lemieux. That was fun. He was their saviour.
Reed: And it’s great how you find fun in challenges. I’m sure skating with Lemieux was a challenge.
Simpson: It was fun! I have fond memories of my time in hockey. I got to play with some of the greatest players ever – Mike Bossy, Brian Trottier, Mario Lemieux, and then vicariously through my brother, with Gretzky and Messier and Kurri, all of those guys. I mean, I saw a window into hockey that very few people get to see, right? But people still sometimes say to me, ‘You must be disappointed with how your hockey career turned out.’ But I never really think about it that way.

“I got to chase around a guy by the name of Mario Lemieux. That was fun. He was their saviour.”Dave Simpson

Reed: Perhaps their view is jaded by the fame that professional hockey brings.
Simpson: I know it occasionally has bothered other people more than me, that they think I got a bum deal. And I say, getting to play for my hometown London Knights is something that I’ll always remember. I had one of the most magical seasons ever, that last year in London. It was fun.simpson-trophies
Reed: Dave, that 1981-82 season ended with you being the most decorated junior hockey player in history.
Simpson: I’ve heard that from (OHL commissioner) Dave Branch. He said no one has won as many awards in one year as I did in ’81-82.
Reed: Yet you’ve also assembled what is already a hall-of-fame career in business. So, it’s fitting we’re here at Ivey Business School talking. More on that in a bit, but let’s get back to your trophies from that magical season. It included 155 points, including 67 goals, still the Knights record for single-season points. That got you the Eddie Powers Memorial Trophy. You were CHL Player of the Year. You won the Red Tilson Trophy (OHL’s outstanding player); OHL’s Bobby Smith Trophy for combining hockey and academic excellence; and William Hanley Trophy for most sportsmanlike player.
Simpson: I don’t recall.
Reed: Seriously? It’s safe to say no other player will ever have a season like that in Canadian junior hockey.
Simpson: Well, I have a photo with a lot of trophies. That’s all I remember.  But it was one of those things where we weren’t a good team, as you may recall.SONY DSC
Reed: Always thinking of the team. You’re almost too good to be true, Dave.
Simpson: (Laughing). I don’t really recall.
Reed: For the record, you were 35-30-3 and lost in the quarterfinals under coach Paul McIntosh. Oddly enough, though, I have a vivid memory from that season. I was a rookie reporter with the Fanshawe College radio stations 6X-FM, interviewing you outside the Knights dressing room, when a teammate walked by, pointed at you, and said, ‘He’s going to be Prime Minister someday.’
Simpson: When you’re 18, yeah, not many guys are thinking about that. But we started a thing when I was with the team, and Branks (long-time Knights trainer Don Brankley) kept it up for a number of years. When we travelled to Ottawa, I would always take the whole team on a tour of the Parliament Buildings. And they kept that as a tradition. We’d always go the night before. We’d drive up and then we’d have time until the game. So we would do a tour. But it was amazing to me that all kinds of fellow teammates had never left their homes, like the Greater Toronto Area or Barrie or wherever they were from.  So it was astonishing to me to know that they had never been to Ottawa! Because as a kid, I went to Ottawa all the time. My family travelled around a lot. So I really took that leadership responsibility to educate our teammates the nation’s capital.
Reed: That brings the role of leader on and off the ice to a whole different level, Dave.
Simpson: To me, it was a case of, as you get older, you should be responsible. But again, it comes back to, I would be bored sitting around all day waiting for a hockey game. I mean, what’s the wait for a hockey game? You know, you can be intense during the game, but when it’s over, move on and do something else. Don’t be wallowing in your experience that day, which is what a lot of players do. There’s nothing you can do about it after the game is over.
Reed: Yet the old-school mentality, which still ruled during your junior hockey days, felt otherwise.
Simpson: I had some coaches that were that way, in particular in Indianapolis, where we were a very good team. So when New York was winning the Stanley Cup, we won, too, went to the final three years in a row in Indianapolis. But Fred Creighton was an old school coach. Fred wouldn’t speak to us if we lost a game. He would pass us in the streets, or see us in a restaurant in another town, and not speak to us if we lost. And he really felt that nobody should be smiling. I always took it as, how can football players smash each other and then help someone up? You know, it doesn’t say that you’re not competitive, that after I just whipped your butt, I helped you up off the ground. And yet hockey players aren’t allowed to shake hands at the end of the game. You’re not allowed to look like you’re having fun with someone that you might have played junior with, and now he’s facing off against you. A lot of people don’t understand the nature of a competitive spirit.
Reed: You’ve always been wired a little bit different from most players in that regards. In fact, you actually wrote a letter to all of the OHL teams, stating you would only play in London. That was ballsy back then. You were going to attend Western, and play for the Knights. Period. And that’s how it worked out.SONY DSC
Simpson: Ask most people, be it in business, life in general, card games, anything, they’ll say I’m one of the most competitive people they’ve ever met. But you would never know it if I lose, or when the game is over. When it’s over, it’s over. It doesn’t bother me in the least bit. I can walk away, knowing I did everything I could to win. Don’t let it bother you after that! And I’ve tried to instill that in my kids, too: don’t let it ruin your day. We didn’t win that game: that doesn’t mean shirk your responsibility in the game.  You go hard, or you don’t play. I always went hard, but beyond that it never bothered me. That life after the game is to be enjoyed.

“Ask most people, be it in business, life in general, card games, anything, they’ll say I’m one of the most competitive people they’ve ever met. But you would never know it if I lose, or when the game is over.”Dave Simpson

Reed: You obviously balance your life extremely well. But even going back to junior hockey, I remember your mom, Marion, racing around town, driving you from Oakridge Oaks football games – you were quarterback, and a very good one – to the old London Gardens for a Knights game on Friday nights. Football could have been your calling, too. Others thought as much.
Simpson: Yes, I was quarterbacking Oakridge, and I remember talking with (Western Mustangs head coach) Darwin Semotiuk and (former quarterback) Jamie Bone. You’ll remember Jamie was going through his issues of the import rules in Canada for quarterbacks, where essentially another American could come up if they were in the quarterback position. I know Jamie used my name at a Human Rights Tribunal to say, ‘Here’s a guy that I think could be a great Canadian quarterback, but he’s going to play hockey because there’s no spot for Canadians in (the CFL).’ That may have been overstating it on his part, but he was making a point to the Tribunal about affecting young people.  So yes, I loved football, just loved it. And I didn’t want to stop playing.
Reed: You won a city championship with the Oaks.
Simpson: We did. I still remember the score, 34-13. High school is so much fun to remember.
Reed: You’re still a kid at heart.
Simpson: And remember, even as a hockey player, it’s important to do other things. I know from speaking with Wayne Gretzky, he would say the same thing. Play baseball, play other sports. Get cross-trained in muscles.
Reed: I’ve heard the same thing from so many other athletes, including Mike Weir, and Silken Laumann.
Simpson: Muscle memory is a thing that, with repetitive nature, like golf, can lead to injuries. Doing other sports still trains your brain about muscle memory, and how to win, how to position yourself in soccer to get open, for example. It’s really refreshing for your brain to do something different. Also, taking stress off some of those body parts is important. These kids who play spring three-on-three hockey, followed by summer hockey: I always looked at it and said, geez. When I played, as soon as hockey was over we went right into the Oakridge baseball season, and then soccer later on when that became more popular.
Reed: I had forgotten that you and Craig were heavy into Oakridge baseball.
Simpson: My dad (Don) would tell you that baseball was by far my best sport. But I liked it the least because to me it wasn’t active enough.
Reed: So true amongst many kids today.
Simpson: I have a story for you, because you’re a baseball lover. In Pittsburgh, Craig and I took this Russian fella’ who was trying out for the Penguins to a Pittsburgh Pirates game. He’d never seen baseball.
Reed: I’m a diehard Pirates fan. Continue.
Simpson: We went to old Three Rivers Stadium, and we were watching the game and waiting to see how the Russian hockey player enjoyed it. At the end of the game we asked, what do you think? He turned to us, and his only comment was, ‘Do these guys shower after this?’ He looked at baseball like a hockey player, where it’s go, go, go. He couldn’t understand baseball. I mean, those were the days when the first basemen had big bellies and weren’t in great shape.
Reed: Like Willie Stargell at the end of his career. But that Russian player probably saw Sid Bream at first base.
Simpson: But back to my point, my kids do track, volleyball, badminton, basketball, all the school sports and club sports. I always tell them, don’t funnel into something because you’re just going to end up annoyed at that sport. It’s overtaken your life. So I wanted them to do lots of things.
Reed: Your mother was on the Canadian Olympic track team in 1952. Craig won Stanley Cups, and has become one of the most respected sports broadcasters in Canada. Christine, former Miss Teen London, is one of our top hockey broadcast journalists. And now your kids are active in sports. Is it any wonder that the Simpson family has been known affectionately as the First Family of London Hockey? I mean, talk about overachievers!
Simpson: Yes, except for a few things regarding that title. I guess my ambivalence to that comes from part of what I was always chafing against, and that is, I didn’t want to be a hockey player.
Reed: You’re business prowess overshadows your hockey accolades, no doubt, but more people will know you from your days with the London Knights and that incredible season.

The Simpson family (minus sister Jan) celebrate Craig's Stanley Cup win. Photo: Simpson Family Collection.

The Simpson family (minus sister Jan) celebrate Craig’s Stanley Cup win. Photo: Simpson Family Collection.

Simpson: In terms of that’s the moniker you get, First Family of Hockey, I applied for MBA, and Law. It didn’t matter which one I got into, by the way, because I was just looking for something so that no one would say to me, ‘You’re just a dumb hockey player.’
Reed: But obviously, that’s not the only reason. You were very focused on a career outside of hockey, as we’ve heard earlier.
Simpson: Yes, and I always had that focus, which comes from both of my parents, who were educators, teachers. Dad was at Western at the time, and my mom was a teacher at Ryerson (Public School) here in town. So education was incredibly important. I did sports because I loved sports, and we grew up playing sports. But I didn’t think that was the definitional thing. I’ve got an older sister (Jan) who’s an English Ph.D. and not really into sports, period. But I was the guy that then broke the ice on hockey, sorta’ speak. Craig is five years younger. He tagged along, and got into a lot of those experiences.

” … I didn’t want to be a hockey player.”Dave Simpson

Reed: Craig once told me, when he was playing Jr. B hockey at the Gardens, that you made him “nervous” being on the ice with him during some one-on-one practice time. I remember being in the press box watching the two of you skate together, hours before a Knights game. He held you in high regard – looked up to his big brother.
Simpson: My sister, Chris, was caught in between. She was dragged to a lot of arenas. She could have said, either I hate this, or I like it like my brothers do. She had fun with it. And she turned that into, to me, one of the most positive female experiences of anyone, in particular for hockey. She has a wealth of knowledge and competency. She speaks well. So she’s been able to make a career out of it.
Reed: And now here’s Craig, offering some of the most insightful hockey analyses as a colour commentator.
Simpson: Craig is very different than me, as he will tell you, and as my sister will tell you. He loves the lifestyle of hockey. When I said to you I really had a challenge knowing that while in hockey, what would I do all day, well, Craig loves the lifestyle. He loves swapping stories, hanging with the guys, talking all night.
Reed: Which is part of the reason why he’s such a good broadcaster.
Simpson: Yes, he has stayed in the game. When you retire at age 28, like he did, then what do you do? Well, he ended up carving a really good career. Now, I don’t really watch hockey on TV. But people will ask me, ‘Did you hear what your brother said last night?’ And I say, no, I don’t really watch hockey. They can’t believe it. Well, everybody I played with is retired now. So, I stopped watching for a number of years. But Craig has made a great career out of it.  So in that sense, it’s absolutely true.
Reed: So, given all of your family’s hockey accomplishments – and you are a huge part of that, Dave – you must believe the Simpsons are London’s First Family of Hockey.
Simpson: It wouldn’t be true in the way that the Hunter family has lived and breathed. Dick Hunter was all about hockey. He was the coach that I played against when Mark (Hunter) was in Junior B. So they were a hockey, hockey, hockey family, all the way! And they’ve done great things for London.
Reed: Just from our short chat today, it sounds to me like hockey is creeping back into your life.SONY DSC
Simpson: I’ll tell you a story, then. I didn’t go to any Knights games for many years. But then we got called to do some things, like the closing of the old Gardens, which was great because they had all the eras represented. That was fun. Darryl Sittler was there. I was there. Then, my kids one day came home from school. This is 2005, and up until then I had not really talked about hockey. My wife is not a hockey fan. Her family’s not a sports family at all. But one day my daughter comes home and says, ‘Dad, the boys at school are all talking about this guy Corey Perry. And he’s getting close to your records.’ She said, ‘Dad, did you used to play hockey?’ I said, well I used to play for the Knights. And sure enough, (the 1981-82 155 points) starts coming in the paper. It had been a lapse of more than 20 years. Nobody talked about it. But then the Knights got good again, right? So Corey Perry started getting close, and then I started to become a trivia question. You know you’re old when you’re a trivia question! So then my kids started to take an interest.
Reed: I find it hard to believe that your kids knew nothing about your hockey playing days.
Simpson: They didn’t, because we didn’t talk hockey. And I didn’t have any nostalgia anywhere in the house. But ever since Corey Perry got close (130 points during the Knights’ Memorial Cup-winning season in 2004-05), it has come up more frequently. And now the Knights are a powerhouse. All records are made to be broken, and these guys are great players. They’re way better than we were.

“My wife is not a hockey fan. Her family’s not a sports family at all. But one day my daughter comes home and says, ‘Dad, the boys at school are all talking about this guy Corey Perry. And he’s getting close to your records.’ She said, ‘Dad, did you used to play hockey?’”Dave Simpson

Reed: Apples and oranges, I think. Different era. Don’t sell yourself short. A record is a record.
Simpson: Anyways, we always check now around February or March to see how close they are in scoring. I know Pat Kane got really close one year (145 points in 2006-07). Then they traded for John Tavares and we were wondering, is that really a record if he gets traded from another team? But then he didn’t get close (104 points with Oshawa and London). And then last year, Mitch Marner, with an unbelievable November. He had so many points, but then when you look at it at the end of the day, he didn’t beat my old record (116 points, and 126 points the previous season). So the kids are proud that their dad still has the record of 155 points. And yes, I take a peak to see if anyone is getting close. But records are made to be broken, and someday someone will do it.
Reed: Was there a point during that season when you said, something special is happening here. I have a chance to make history?

30

The Interview

Coming in January 2017: Part II of THE INTERVIEW with Dave Simpson.

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About jeffreyreed

A leading Canadian communications professional. Corporate office http://www.JeffreyReedReporting.com established 1989. Publisher/Editor of this website and https://londonontariogolf.com.

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