Skip to content

Top 40 Countdown: No. 4

The No. 4 goal-scorer on the Chicago Wolves Top 40 Goal-Scorers Countdown, presented by Jewel-Osco, was a legendary American Hockey League player who earned his place in the AHL Hall of Fame in 2020.

After excelling for the Milwaukee Admirals for the first four seasons of his professional career, Darren Haydar joined the Atlanta Thrashers’ organization and the Wolves for the 2006-07 season. What Haydar accomplished during his first 39 games in a Wolves uniform might never be equaled as long as the AHL lives.

In his Wolves debut on Oct. 7, 2006, Haydar scored two goals in a 5-0 victory at Peoria. For each of his next 38 games — all the way through Jan. 6, 2007 — Haydar produced at least one point to set the AHL record for the longest point streak. His 39-game spree featured 24 goals and 55 assists and tied Wayne Gretzky for the fourth-longest streak in professional hockey history.

Haydar went on to finish the 2006-07 season with a career-high 122 points (41 goals and 81 assists) in 73 games to earn the AHL’s MVP award. The following season, head coach John Anderson named Haydar team captain and he led the Wolves to the 2008 Calder Cup championship. Though he spent a healthy chunk of the season in the AHL with the Atlanta Thrashers, the Milton, Ontario, native still found time to pile up 58 points in 51 AHL games. Then, when the postseason arrived, Haydar posted 12 goals and 15 assists in 24 games and was the first to hoist the Calder Cup to the sky when the Wolves wrapped it up in Game 6 on June 10, 2008, at Allstate Arena.

Haydar then spent a season in Grand Rapids and a season in Lake Erie before capping his AHL career with three more seasons in Chicago. He averaged 23 goals and 40 assists per year from 2010-13, even though he was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) near the close of his time in Chicago. He finished his five years in Chicago with 128 goals and 240 assists in 342 games to rank third on the organization’s all-time list with 368 points. Haydar added 26 goals and 33 assists in 44 postseason games — a healthy chunk of his all-time AHL records for postseason goals (63), assists (80) and points (143).

Haydar played three more seasons overseas before returning to Canada, where he and his wife, Sara, are raising three sons: Liam, Quinn and Owen. The family started the Darren Haydar Charity Golf Tournament in 2017 to raise money to help the MS Society of Canada’s Hamilton-Halton Chapter.

Want to enjoy more of the countdown?

No. 40: Gage Quinney
No. 39: Tim Breslin
No. 38: Nathan Oystrick
No. 37: Ben Simon
No. 36: Curtis McKenzie
No. 35: Kamil Piros
No. 34: Mark Mancari
No. 33: Simon Gamache
No. 32: Guy Larose
No. 31: Wade Megan
No. 30: Shane Harper
No. 29: Michael Davies
No. 28: Karl Stewart
No. 27: Cory Larose
No. 26: Pat Cannone
No. 25: Brian Wiseman
No. 24: Colin Stuart
No. 23: Brian Noonan
No. 22: Tim Bergland
No. 21: Joey Crabb
No. 20: Jordan Lavallee-Smotherman
No. 19: Dan Currie
No. 18: Dan Plante
No. 17: Bob Nardella
No. 16: Brandon Pirri
No. 15: Steve Martins
No. 14: Spencer Machacek
No. 13: Kevin Doell
No. 12: Niklas Andersson
No. 11: Ty Rattie
No. 10: Scott Pearson
No. 9: Derek MacKenzie
No. 8: JP Vigier
No. 7: Steve Larouche
No. 6: Jason Krog
No. 5: Chris Marinucci