October 01, 2015

Burke Henry

When Burke Henry grew up in a small, rural Manitoba town dreaming of playing hockey he probably never thought he would end up in Slovenia or Asia.

But that's exactly where the six-foot-three, 215 pound defenseman did end up, as well as Sweden, Denmark and Austria.

Henry was born in Ste. Rose, Manitoba and played his junior hockey in Brandon with the famed Wheat Kings.

In his rookie season with the Wheaties he helped the team win the Memorial Cup championship. By the time he was done in the WHL he was captaining the Wheat Kings, leading all defensemen in the league in scoring, and was a league All Star. He was also a third round draft pick of the New York Rangers.

In his first three seasons as a pro in the AHL with both the Rangers and Calgary Flames organizations. By the summer of 2002 he was unsigned and looking for a job.

Henry signed with the Chicago Blackhawks and it turned out to be the best thing for him. He was a solid player with Norfolk in the AHL, which allowed him to get called up for extended looks in Chicago. Over two seasons he would play a combined 39 games in the NHL, scoring twice and picking up six assists.

"He can play with a certain edge to his game, but at this level you can't get caught running around out of position. When the plays are there to be made he has to make them," said coach Brian Sutter.

Henry signed with the Florida Panthers in 2004 but never played with the team. In fact, after that one more season in the AHL his pro career in North America was over. He was then off on a vagabond tour of the world by chasing hockey pucks.

Henry also won an Allan Cup championship with the South East Prairie Thunder of Steinbach, Manitoba in 2012

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