Detroit Red Wings
Jiri Slegr
71
JiriSlegr
POSITION: Defenseman
HEIGHT: 6' 1"
SHOOTS: Left
WEIGHT: 210
BIRTHDATE: 05/30/1971
BIRTHPLACE: Jihlava, CZE
DRAFTED: VAN: 1990-23 overall
Son of Jiri Bubla WJC-A All-Star Team (1990) Best Defenseman at WJC-A (1991) Czechoslovakian First All-Star Team (1991) Traded to Edmonton by Vancouver for Roman Oksiuta, April 7, 1995. Traded to Pittsburgh by Edmonton for Pittsburgh's 3rd round choice (later traded to New Jersey New Jersey selected Brian Gionta) in 1998 Entry Draft, August 12, 1997. Traded to Atlanta by Pittsburgh for San Jose's 3rd round choice (previously acquired, later traded to Columbus Columbus selected Aaron Johnson) in 2001 Entry Draft, January 14, 2001. Traded to Detroit by Atlanta for Yuri Butsayev and Detroit's 3rd round choice (later traded to Columbus Columbus selected Jeff Genovy) in 2002 Entry Draft, March 19, 2002. Signed as a free agent by Vancouver, September 4, 2003. Traded to Boston by Vancouver for future considerations, January 17, 2004. Signed as a free agent by Litvinov (CzRep), August 20, 2004. Missed majority of 2005-06 season with recurring back problems on a ruptured disk (March 10, 2006). Signed as a free agent by Litvinov (CzRep), July 31, 2006.
After five seasons with Litvinov of the Czech league, the 21 year-old Jiri Slegr joined the Canucks in 1992-93. He'd already had considerable seasoning on the international stage, having played for his country at the World Junior Championships in 1990 and 1991, winning bronze medals each time. He was named best defenseman at the 1991 tournament. He also took part in the senior World Championships in 1991 and brought home another bronze medal from the 1992 Winter Olympics in Albertville, France.

Slegr's NHL career hasn't been quite so glorious. He spent part of his rookie season with the Canucks' American league farm club in Hamilton, then played the entire 1993-94 season with Vancouver, posting 38 points in 78 games. But although he was the club's third-highest scoring defenseman, he didn't suit up in a single playoff game during the Canucks' run to the 1994 Stanley Cup finals.

In April 1995 he was traded to the Edmonton Oilers, and by 1996-97 he was back in Europe, suiting up primarily with the Swedish club Sodertalje. He played in the 1996 World Cup of Hockey, in which the Czech Republic placed a disappointing eighth out of eight teams and at the 1997 World Championships, where he helped his team win bronze. In 1997 he returned to the NHL after his rights were traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins.

The Penguins had once been an offensive powerhouse but they were now emphasizing defense, a shift that had a profound influence over Slegr's style of play. His new style also paid off at the 1998 Winter Olympics in Nagano, Japan, where the Czech team surprised everyone with its excellent defense and would go on to win the gold medal.

After suiting up for the Czech Republic at the 1998 World Championship, Slegr continued to be a dependable blueliner for the Penguins, scoring a career-high 11 goals in 99-2000. After parts of four seasons with the Penguins, Slegr was dealt to the Atlanta Thrashers during the 2000-01 season, before being on the move yet again during the 2001-02 season.

Slegr moved from Atlanta to Detroit in 2001-02, and was fortunate enough to capture his first Stanley Cup with the Red Wings. Following his Stanley Cup win in 2002, Slegr opted to play overseas before returning to the NHL in 2003-04 and to the team that originaly drafted him back in 1990 the Vancouver Canucks. Upon his return to Vancouver, Slegr was used sparingly and was subsequently dealt to the Boston Bruins towards the mid-point of the season. In 36 games with the Bruins, Slegr accounted for 19 points (4-15-19) before going on to represent his homeland at the 2004 World Championships in Prague, Czech Republic.

In the fall of 2004, Slegr was named to the Czech Republic's World Cup and in the spring of 2005, helped lead his homeland to a gold medal at the World Championship. 

Courtesy of the Hockey Hall of Fame