Blackhawks chairman Rocky Wirtz has submitted a letter to the Hockey Hall of Fame’s chairman, Lanny MacDonald, requesting Brad Aldrich’s name be removed from the Stanley Cup.
“Aldrich’s involvement with the team during the 2010 season has cast a pall on the players’ extraordinary work that year. The names of some of hockey’s most talented athletes appear on the Stanley Cup. But so does the name ‘Brad Aldrich’ whose role as a video coach made him eligible for the engraving,” wrote Wirtz. “His conduct disqualified him, however, and it was a mistake to submit his name. We are sorry we allowed it to happen.”
The request comes just days after the Blackhawks publicly released a 107-page document that involved interviewing 139 witnesses over the course of a four-month independent investigation following a lawsuit filed by a former player in May 2021. The report went into detail regarding a sexual assault that occurred in May 2010 by Aldrich on Kyle Beach and the lack of an investigation by the Blackhawks organization at that time.
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Who is Brad Aldrich?
Aldrich was hired in July 2008 and served as the video coach with the Blackhawks during the team’s Stanley Cup season in 2010.
He left the organization that summer and went on to work and volunteer with USA Hockey, the University of Notre Dame, Miami University (OH) and Houghton High School. Aldrich was convicted in 2013 in Houghton, Mich. of fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct involving a student. He was sentenced in 2014 to nine months in jail and five years of probation.
The former student, who played on the high school hockey team, is listed as John Doe 2 and is also suing the Blackhawks citing they provided positive references for Aldrich.
Per The Associated Press, Miami University (OH) also opened an investigation in June. Aldrich was the director of hockey operations at the school but resigned in 2012 “under suspicion of unwanted touching of a male adult.” In September, the school released its findings and concluded that he sexually assaulted two men in the fall of 2012.
MORE: Full details, timeline from Blackhawks sexual assault scandal
Can a name be removed from the Stanley Cup?
Technically. After the Oilers won the Stanley Cup in 1984, owner Peter Pocklington included his father’s, Basil Pocklington, on the list of names to be engraved. It was discovered after the fact that he had nothing to do with the operations of the Oilers. Because it is etched into the silver, X’s were placed across his name.
According to TSN’s Pierre LeBrun, the NHL is the only one that can decide if a name is removed and expects the Hockey Hall of Fame to pass on the request.
Does the Stanley Cup always get corrected?
There have also been a number of mistakes. Some that have been left to stand the test of time include:
- 1941-42 Maple Leafs: Turk Broda appears also as Walter Broda
- 1950-51 Maple Leafs: Ted Kennedy’s spelled as Ted Kennedyy
- 1951-52 Red Wings: Alex Delvecchio’s last name is spelled Belvecchio
- 1962-63: TORONTO MAPLE LEAES
- 1971-72: BQSTQN BRUINS
- 1980-81: NEW YORK ILANDERS
And some have been corrected like Adam Deadmarsh (listed as Deadmarch), who was the first name fixed in 1995-96. Hall of Fame netminder Jacques Plante appears on the Stanley Cup five times and each time his name is spelled differently.
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What was the Hockey Hall of Fame’s response?
Just hours after the Blackhawks letter was sent to MacDonald, the Hockey Hall of Fame’s director of corporate and media relations Kelly Masse released the following statement on Twitter:
“HHOF Chair, Lanny McDonald spoke w/NHL Bettman & Daly today re: the request from the Blackhawks to have Aldrich’s name removed from the Cup. The parties agree this request is appropriate & will have further dialogue, incl w/ Cup trustees, on how best to effectuate this request.”
Where is the Stanley Cup now?
The irony is the Stanley Cup is actually back in Canada to have the Lightning’s 2021 championship team engraved into sports greatest trophy. So, in theory, it wouldn’t be too difficult to remove the name immediately.