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Continued: Scoggins: Another golden moment for Pavelich

  • Article by: CHIP SCOGGINS , Star Tribune
  • Last update: July 2, 2014 - 8:31 AM

“It can’t help but cross your mind sometimes,” he said. “A lot of people bring it up.”

His remote existence and love of anonymity run counter to our selfie culture. He chuckled at the notion of being labeled a celebrity.

“I’m not really into that,” he said.

He evaded the spotlight as a player, too. Teammates adored him but respected his need for privacy. Eruzione, who became a broadcaster for New York Rangers games following the ’80 Olympics, once asked Pavelich if he’d like to do an interview to show fans more of his personality.

“He said, ‘Rizzo, you know that’s not important,’ ” Eruzione said.

Former players still marvel at Pavelich’s talent, the way he stickhandled and relied on his instincts and imagination to create plays. And those hands, goodness, he was a magician with the puck.

Pavelich loved playing for Herb Brooks, in the Olympics and in NHL, because the hard-edge coach didn’t stifle his creativity. Pav adopted that style as a kid on ponds up on the Iron Range.

“We were in a creative period of hockey in Minnesota [back then],” he said. “Nobody really dumped and chased. We wanted to stickhandle.”

He’d probably cringe if the watched NHL hockey these days (which he doesn’t). He keeps himself busy with his projects in land development, fishing outings and travel schedule.

He’s encountered heartbreak in recent years, too. His wife, Kara, died in a fall from a second-story balcony at their home in 2012. Pavelich politely declined to talk about that tragedy. He prefers to keep his personal life closely guarded.

He’s been that way about most things in his life. He’s perfectly content without fame or attention, or valuable sports memorabilia.

A quiet day in his canoe in northern Minnesota always seems pleasant enough.


Chip Scoggins


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