CHICAGO – The Chicago Blackhawks of the National Hockey League announced that they have signed 1990 Riley Cup Playoffs Most Valuable Player Wade Flaherty.
The Pensacola Ice Pilots are the ECHL affiliate of the Blackhawks of the NHL and the Rockford IceHogs of the American Hockey League.
John Torchetti and Ryan Stewart, who both played and coached in the ECHL, are assistant coaches for the Blackhawks and former ECHL player and coach Al MacIsaac is general manager of Rockford. Mike Haviland, who coached Atlantic City and Trenton to the Kelly Cup, is head coach of Rockford while former ECHL coach Ted Dent is his assistant.
Selected in the ninth round (181st overall) by Buffalo in the 1988 NHL Entry Draft, Flaherty began his professional career in the ECHL in 1989-90 with the Greensboro Monarchs, going 12-9-1 with a goals against average of 4.40 and a save percentage of .890 in 27 regular season games.
Flaherty was named MVP of the 1990 Riley Cup Playoffs after going 8-1 with a goals against average of 2.22 and a save percentage of .944 while leading the Monarchs to the ECHL championship.
The 39 year old played in the AHL in 2006-07 and was 17-9-2 with two shutouts, a goals-against average of 2.42 and a save percentage of .909 in 32 games for Manitoba.
He was named the Most Valuable Player of the 2004 Calder Cup Playoffs after leading Milwaukee to the AHL championship. Flaherty was 16-5 with a goals against average of 1.93 and a save percentage of .933 in the postseason. In the regular season, Flaherty was 21-12-3 with a goals against average of 2.13 and a save percentage of .922 as Milwaukee finished with an AHL-leading 46-24-7-3 record.
Flaherty has played in the NHL with San Jose, the New York Islanders, Tampa Bay, Florida and Nashville. He is 27-56-9 with five shutouts and a goals against average of 3.51 in 120 regular season games and 2-3 with a goals-against average of 4.93 in seven games in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.