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Prolific-scoring Hockey Hall of Fame offensive defenseman Paul Coffey was born June 1, 1960 in Weston, Ontario. The three-time Norris Trophy winner was drafted by the Edmonton Oilers in the first round (sixth overall) of the 1980 NHL Draft. As with Dale Hawerchuk, the first overall pick of the 1981 Draft, Coffey came to the Flyers in the twilight of his Hall of Fame career.

On December 15, 1996, the Flyers acquired Coffey from the Hartford Whalers for Kevin Haller. Numerous draft picks also changed hands in the transaction. The Flyers sent a 1997 first-round pick (later transferred to the San Jose Sharks and used on the selection of defenseman Scott Hannan) and a 1997 seventh-round pick (Andrew Merrick) to the Whalers, and received a 1997 third-round pick (defenseman Kris Mallette).

One of the fastest-skating players in NHL history, Coffey was a gifted playmaker with outstanding offensive instincts and a fast shot release. Joining - or often leading - the rush, Coffey was deadly and he was lethal at the point on the power play. While he was an average defensive player, his speed and quick stick were effective tools in breaking up plays and triggering counterattacks. The 6-foot, 200-pounder also played a chippy style that brought him 100-plus penalty minutes seven times in his career, with a high of 193 PIM in 1988-89.

Coffey was brought in to make a potent attack even more dynamic, especially on the power play, and to mentor promising rookie offensive-minded defenseman Janne Niinimaa. Things started out well but Coffey was set back by a New Year's Eve collision with teammate Eric Lindros that seemed to have lingering concussion effects the rest of the year. He also had knee and shoulder injuries.

Nevertheless, Coffey produced 26 points (six goals, 20 assists), 20 penalty minutes and a plus-11 at even strength in 37 regular season games. While a far cry from the sort of offensive production he had in his prime, many other defensemen in his role around the NHL would gladly have taken the same sort of pace. In the 1997 playoffs, Coffey struggled defensively but managed nine points in 17 games (one goal, eight assists, minus three) as the Flyers reached the Stanley Cup Final for the first time in a decade.

The following season, Coffey continued to struggle with injuries and his role was eventually reduced. He produced 29 points (two goals, 27 assists) and 30 penalty minutes in 59 games. Struggling with back issues, Coffey did not appear in the playoffs.

On June 28, 1998, the Flyers traded Coffey to the Chicago Blackhawks for a 1998 fifth-round draft pick (Francis Belanger) that Chicago originally obtained from the New York Islanders. Coffey played with the Blackhawks for 10 games, spent one-plus season with the Carolina Hurricanes and then finished his career with 18 games for the Boston Bruins in 2000-01.

For his career, Coffey racked up 1,531 points (396 goals, 1,135 assists) and 1,800 penalty minutes in 1,409 regular season games and 196 points (59 goals, 137 assists) with 264 penalty minutes in 194 career Stanley Cup playoff games. He won four Stanley Cups, three Canada Cup championships and played in 14 NHL-All Star Games (including the 1997 game representing the Flyers).