Top 10 NHL Enforcers of All Time: No.5 Dave Semenko

Rob WebbAnalyst IAugust 3, 2008

Number five would be Dave Semenko also known as "Cementhead" (possibly the coolest NHL nickname of all time). Why did this tough guy play? Well, that answer is easy –-to be Wayne Gretzky’s personal bodyguard.


I’m not too familiar with Semenko, but doing some research and listening to what others have to say, I’ve came to a conclusion that he needed to be somewhere in this list.


The native of Winnipeg, Manitobawas selected by the Minnesota North Stars in 1997. He was later traded to the Edmonton Oilers to become the team’s policeman. He was mainly to protect the young Gretzky but also others such as Jari Kurri, Mark Messier, and Paul Coffey.


Dave was a tough cookie, and was also a pretty good boxer. He once stepped into the ring with boxing legend Muhammad Ali during an exhibition match.


Some say Dave was a big part in helping the Edmonton Oilers win back to back Stanley Cups in 1984 and 1985.


Dave is probably one of the only enforcers to play on the first line. I don’t think we will ever see that now, in today’s NHL.


Dave was traded to Hartford in 1986 but then was moved to Toronto near the end of that season. He played one full year with the Maple Leafs in 1987-88. After that year he retired.


He later found himself becoming an assistant coach for the Edmonton Oilers in 1996. After that he soon joined the scouting staff as well.


Dave played 575 games in the NHL and scored 55 goals along with 88 assists. He tallied up 1175 penalty minutes and dropped the gloves 109 times.


Also, one last little quick fact – Dave was the last person to score in WHA history