Chicago Wolves vice chairman BUDDY MEYERS is among 11 people who’ll be inducted into the Illinois Hockey Hall of Fame on Sunday.
Meyers, who founded the Wolves with 2013 Hall of Fame inductee DON LEVIN in 1994, will be enshrined in the Builders category. Meyers has been a part of the hockey world for nearly 40 years as an agent, owner, parent and ambassador.
“Buddy is someone I’ve known very personally for at least 25 years since our sons played Bantam and Midget together,” said Norm Spiegel, former Illinois Hockey president and current USA Hockey director. “Buddy was a great candidate. I know what he and the Wolves have done for (professional) hockey and the contributions they’ve made to youth hockey in Illinois.”
Meyers’ interest in hockey began as an undergraduate at the University of Illinois. It blossomed when his older son, Justin, started playing at 4, followed soon thereafter by his younger son, Zak. Then it made perfect sense for Meyers to combine his passion for hockey with his skills as an attorney to represent professional hockey players. Grant Mulvey was his first client and Troy Murray, Igor Kravchuk, Murray Bannerman and others soon followed.
Meyers, Levin and Mulvey worked together to secure the International Hockey League franchise that became the Chicago Wolves in 1994. The Wolves have earned four championships — two Turner Cups in the IHL and two Calder Cups in the American Hockey League — in addition to serving as a staunch supporter of youth hockey in the Chicago area.
“Winning — that’s our reputation,” Meyers said. “We’ve been doing this for 20 years. I’m most proud of that and what we’ve been able to do for youth hockey as well as providing affordable family entertainment. I want to continue to work with Don to maintain the reputation we have earned and to continue to be the type of organization that we’ve developed into.
“We have always been innovators. We believe we were the first in professional hockey to have “future prospects” skate and play during intermission periods. We’re now seeing our fans from the early years of our franchise bringing their children and grandchildren to Wolves games.”
Meyers and the other members of the ninth Illinois Hockey Hall of Fame class will be honored at the Induction Dinner on Sunday, Jan. 26, at the Belvedere Events and Banquets Hall in Elk Grove Village.