Ray Irwin found formula for success in the AFHL

October 3rd, 2011

2010-11 was a fantastic season for the Washington Power whose Stanley Cup victory will rank as one of the greatest victories in AFHL history. In just a one year span, Washington went from the bottom of the league to the top, going from 17th place in the 09-10 season to Stanley Cup champions in the 10-11 season.

What the team accomplished last spring left many people shaking their heads in a combination of amazement and disbelief. Washington’s meteoric rise was led by their (now former) GM Ray Irwin and the key trades he made on his way to an AFHL Stanley Cup.  During last year’s regular season,  Irwin traded for superstar goaltender Roberto Luongo. Rumor has it that Irwin spent thanksgiving dinner with the Luongo family trying and eventually convincing Roberto to waive his no-trade clause and join the Power. Luckily he did because Roberto’s heroic efforts during the AFHL Playoffs would help the Power on their way to the title.

Irwin made his riskiest move just minutes before the AFHL Trade Deadline, by trading his last three blue-chip prospects for veteran winger Teemu Selanne. Next to Luongo, Selanne carried the Power’s offense during the playoffs, making a deadly combination with Joe Thornton and Dany Heatley as Washington’s first line of offense.

Trading for Luongo and Selanne were just two of the many trades Irwin made to completely transform the 2009 Washington Power to the 2010-11 Washington Power…

Washington Power pro team at the beginning on the 2009 season


Daniel Sedin (LW) – Vincent Lecavalier (C) – Patrick Kane (RW)

Nikita Filatov (LW) – Kyle Turris (C) – Drew Stafford (RW)

Andrei Kostitsyn (LW) – Cody Hodgson (C) – Eric Fehr (RW)


Eric Johnson (D) – Drew Doughty (D)

Jonathan Ericsson (D) – Kris Russell (D)


Tomas Vokoun (G)

Ondrej Pavelec (G)

Cory Schneider (G)


Artem Anisimov (C),  Mattias Tedenby (LW), PK Subban (D), Logan Couture (C),

Lars Eller (C), Jamie McBain (D), Oliver Ekman-Larsson (D)


Washington Power pro team at the beginning of the 2010 regular season


Dany Heatley – Vencent Lecavalier – Claude Giroux

James Neal – Mike Richards – Alexei Kovalev

Steve Sullivan – Thomas Fleischmann – Nikolai Zherdev


Mike Green – Kris Letang

Erik Karlsson – Victor Hedman


Marty Turco

Tim Thomas

Antti Niemi


Steve Downie, Brandon Yip, Colin Wilson, Eric Fehr,

Logan Couture, Joffrey Lupul, Dennis Seidenberg


Washington Power 2010-11 Stanley Cup Champions


Dany Heatley – Joe Thornton – Teemu Selanne

Simon Gagne – Mike Richards – Dany Briere

Joffrey Lupul – Patrick Marleau – David Backes


Dan Boyle – Kris Letang

Ryan Suter – Dennis Seidenberg


Roberto Luongo

Tim Thomas

Dwayne Roloson


Jason Arnott, Brent Burns, Scott Gomez, Mike Knuble,

Alex Kovalev, Andrew MacDonald, Andrew Raycroft

While much of Washington’s Cup victory was being attributed to talented athletes such as Luongo, Thornton, Thomas, and Selanne, players insist that the credit goes to the GM for making trades “The Ray Way”.

“The safe thing would have been to not touch a thing and let it go,” said Irwin at a retirement press conference a couple of months ago. “Sure I could have thought we had a decent shot by maintaining the status quo, but in my mind, we weren’t going to win the Stanley Cup without making the trades that I made. Trading guys like Claude Giroux, Mike Green, and the Sedin Twins was not something we wanted to do. But in the end, it worked out.”

Adolf Nipple

Adolf Nipple

Amazing Fantasy Hockey League Staff

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