Hanging from the rafters in Cardiff Bay are five special jerseys. In the history of the Devils five players have contributed so much to the team that they deserved to be recognised for their accomplishments long after they left the club. Players come and players go, but nobody will ever replace the five Devils deemed worthy of having their jersey retired. The numbers 9, 7, 14, 19 and 35 will forever be etched in the minds of long term fans and passed down through each new generation of Devils fan.
Each one special to the Devils in their own way, Gareth Huish spoke to #35, Shannon Hope, to find out what made each shirt, player and person that he played with special enough to have their shirts hung from the rafters of the WNIR to this day.
Check out the Widget link on the right of this page to see our 'Tribute to the Mayor', messages and video content honouring the contribution of the most recent Jersey retiree, Brad Voth.
7: Doug McEwen
“I’ve known Doug since we were back home in Canada when we played together in junior. And Doug almost fell on us by accident; we tried to sign a player by the name of Paul Castron, another friend of mine from Canada. And Castron let us down last minute, and Dougie just happened to be bouncing around the league. As a player his commitment, his skating ability was immense, and perhaps not the most intelligent player but his skill was outstanding. He could skate forever.”
9: John Lawless
“John Lawless is the man who made it all happen and made this club successful - he was the original guy responsible for setting it up. He was a strong player for his size he could finish well, and he was a little agitator really. And for little guys to survive over here in hockey you have to have that. I mean look at guys like Vezio Sacratini and Louis Goulet. They’re little guys with the big attitude and Johnny definately had that. What was hard for Johnny though was being a player and a manager. He handled it very well though and I really think that if Johnny hadn’t left when he did then he would still be sat here alongside me.”
14: Brian Dickson
“Brian Dickson was one of our original players who we brought down from Scotland. He was very influential in our early years to bring the Devils success and to bring some structure. He was also one of our first big name British kids. Unfortunately, he passed away in a skiing accident and his family were so good with us that we thought we would put a bit of respect back their way and we planted a tree downtown and retired his number, so he would never be forgotten in the club.
“He was a very talented little athlete and was a very good skier, good on the slopes. Then on the ice for a British kid he was a very smart little forward, maybe not as fiery as John Lawless but for British talent he was a good athlete. He was very entertaining off the ice; Brian lived with us for a while when I first came over here and he was fun to have around. He sort of led the Scottish contingent with Derek King and Brian Wilkie down here, those three usually led a bit of entertainment at the back of the bus.
And for team morale to have people like Brian is a lot more important than people think, at the time our locker room was set out so that when guys like me came in we respected the British kids.
I have seen imports come over and not respect them, but the way we all look at it is: “Hey we are in your country playing.” And in our time our British kids were always a big part of our success and that’s something that’s being carried forward at our club now.”
19: Steve Moria
Steve Moria over the years was one of the strongest imports over in Britain, a very smart player. On the ice he always stayed out of trouble but he was very clever, he always tended to get his points. And he was a very good two way hockey player; he was a lot better defensively than people give Mo credit for. And offensively he had great vision, sawhe ice well, and read the game very well. You know we actually tried to retire Mo when he was in his early 30’s thinking ‘Geez he hasn’t got another year’ and he went away became a star at his other team and we ended up bringing him back 3 years later and he just kept on doing it
26: Brad Voth
For information on the latest Devils retiree and legendary enforcer Brad Voth, visit our tribute to the 'Mayor' HERE
35: Shannon Hope
“Having your number retired is a huge honour. It’s a big reason why I remained for so long here and tried to keep myself involved with this hockey club. I enjoy it, the city has been great to me, and what’s really special to me is the thanks I get back off the fans."