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Bowman to headline All-Star Luncheon

Hall of Fame coach Scotty Bowman, a 10-time Stanley Cup champion and the all-time winningest coach in National Hockey League history, will be the featured speaker during the Hockey Hall of Fame/AHL All-Star Luncheon in Grand Rapids on Monday, Feb. 9.

The luncheon, a central part of the festivities surrounding the 2004 Pepsi AHL All-Star Classic, will take place on the arena floor at noon, preceding that night’s AHL All-Star Game. In addition to Bowman’s remarks, the event will feature introductions of the 2004 AHL All-Star players and coaches, and presentations involving Hockey Hall of Fame honorees and the honorary captains for both the PlanetUSA and Canadian All-Stars.

Bowman, now a consultant for the Detroit Red Wings, led that franchise to its last three Stanley Cups in 2002, 1998 and 1997. His record of 10 Stanley Cups includes nine championships as a head coach, with Detroit, the Montreal Canadiens (five: 1973 and 1976-79) and Pittsburgh Penguins (one: 1992), breaking his idol Toe Blake’s mark of eight titles. Bowman’s other cup was earned while serving as Pittsburgh’s director of player development in 1991, the same year he was inducted as a builder into the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto.

In 30 seasons behind an NHL bench with St. Louis (1967-71), Montreal (1971-79), Buffalo (1979-80; 1981-87), Pittsburgh (1991-93) and Detroit (1993-2002), Bowman coached his teams to aggregate records of 1244-584-313 during the regular season and 223-130 in the playoffs. A two-time winner of the Jack Adams Award as NHL Coach of the Year (1977, 1996), he also owns several league records for most games coached (2,141 regular season, 353 playoff, 2,494 combined) and most victories (1,244 regular season, 223 playoff, 1,467 combined).

A limited number of Hockey Hall of Fame / AHL All-Star Luncheon tickets are available to the public for $40 per person by calling the Grand Rapids Griffins office at (616) 774-4585 or (800) 2-HOCKEY ext. 3001.

In February, the Griffins and Van Andel Arena will host the 2004 Pepsi AHL All-Star Classic, a two-day event consisting of the AHL All-Star Skills Competition on Sunday, Feb. 8, followed by the AHL All-Star Game on Monday, Feb. 9. For ticket and event information, visit griffinshockey.com/all-star.

The AHL All-Star Classic annually features the top players from all 28 AHL teams. Of the 295 players to take part in the AHL All-Star Classic since 1995, more than 91 percent have competed in the National Hockey League, including Tyler Arnason, Daniel Briere, Andrew Brunette, Anson Carter, Zdeno Chara, Pavol Demitra, Mike Dunham, Patrik Elias, Manny Legace, Brendan Morrison, Vaclav Prospal, Dwayne Roloson, Marc Savard, Martin St. Louis, Steve Sullivan, Tomas Vokoun and Jason Williams.