GREENWICH, Conn. -- Happy Birthday To Greenwich’s Markus Näslund!
Markus Näslund who has owned a home in Greenwich, turns 41 on Wednesday. The retired ice hockey player was born July 30, 1973, in Örnsköldsvik, Sweden.
At age 14, Näslund competed with the regional all-star team from Ångermanland, helping the squad win a national under-16 championship at TV-pucken in 1988. He received the Sven Tumba Award as the tournament's best forward.
At age 15, he played a season with Örnsköldsviks SK in Sweden's third-tier men's league. After playing junior hockey within the Modo organization, he turned professional with the club's Elitserien team in 1990–91. Selected in the first round, 16th overall by the Penguins in the 1991 National Hockey League Entry draft, he joined the NHL in 1993–94.
After his tenure with Pittsburgh, he was traded to the Vancouver Canucks in 1996, where he spent 12 years, including a team record eight as captain. He received the Cyclone Taylor Trophy as the Canucks' most valuable player five times and the Cyrus H. McLean Trophy. In 2008, he signed with the Rangers, where he spent one season before announcing his retirement from the NHL. In 15 NHL seasons, he was First Team All-Star, in 2002, 2003 and 2004, and a Lester B. Pearson Award recipient in 2003.
He was known for his offensive skills, particularly his wrist shot and stickhandling.
Internationally, he has competed with the Swedish national team in two European Junior Championships, two World Junior Championships, four World Championships, two World Cups and one Winter Olympics.
He holds the World Junior record for most goals scored in a single tournament, scoring 13 in 1993.
In World Championship play, he won a silver medal in 1993 and two bronze medals in 1999 and 2002.
On April 21, 2014, Naslund was inducted into the Swedish Hockey Hall Of Fame.