For the first time since 2009 (think about that one for a second!) Wayne Gretzky is back in the National Hockey League in an official position.
On Tuesday the National Hockey League announced that Gretzky, the NHL's all time leading scorer and the most recognizable hockey player in the world, is returning to the NHL as the official ambassador of the league’s centennial celebration.
Gretzky has essentially always served as the league's and the sport's unofficial ambassador since 1979 when he broke into the league as a player. He last held an official position within the NHL in 2009 when he was coach and part owner of the Phoenix Coyotes.
“Anyone who knows me knows that I have long revered the history of our game and the players, coaches and executives who built the league before I was fortunate enough to enter it,” Gretzky said in a statement. “And it is no secret that I remain an avid fan who watches games every night and marvels at the young players who are leading the greatest sport in the world into the league’s next century.
“As I’ve said countless times, I owe just about everything I now have in my life to the game of hockey and the National Hockey League. And I am thrilled to spend the next year celebrating its past, present and future with hockey fans around the world.”