Todd Bidner Interview.
In today’s show I talk to former Washington Capitals, Fife Flyers and Peterborough Pirates forward Todd Bidner.
Todd was drafted into the NHL in 1980 by the Washington Capitals, he was a round 6 pick, 110th overall.
It was a good year for UK ice hockey as in the same round, future imports to play in the UK included Mike Blaisdell 11th o/a (Durham, Nottingham and Sheffield), Wayne Crawford 109th o/a (Peterborough, Whitley, Telford), Mike O’Connor 136th o/a (Durham, Sheffield) and Fred Perlini 158th o/a (Nottingham, Fife, Guildford).
Todd in the NHL
Todd played only 12 times for the NHL’s Washington Capitals. After just 6 games, he broke his leg and was sent to hospital in a taxi. He was on his own and still wearing his hockey kit!
Worse was to follow as on his return later that evening. With his leg in a plaster cast, he had another shock, he explains;
They sent me back to the Capitals stadium in a taxi, the dressing room was deserted and I later discovered that everyone had been fired, the GM, the coach and all the back room staff, right down to the scouting staff, they all got fired!
Three months later, with the plaster cast removed and injury healed, Todd was rearing to go but found himself bouncing back and forth between the Washington Capitals and their affiliate AHL team, the Hersey Bears.
Then came five days he would not forget in a long time, he recalls;
I played Friday night in the AHL, Saturday afternoon in the NHL and that evening in the AHL. Then, on the Sunday, I played in the NHL again.
That Tuesday I was traded to the Edmonton Oilers, but my plane ticket was for Wichita, Kansas. I didn’t even know there was a team in Wichita, Kansas!
Unfortunately Todd never did get a chance to play for the Edmonton Oilers and when, in 1985, his contract was up he chose to swap the American Hockey League (AHL) for the British Hockey League (BHL).
He decided to fly Scotland to sign for the Fife Flyers and link up with good friend Dan Brown.
Todd in the UK
It was the start of a twelve season UK adventure that took in ten different British teams, including the Peterborough Pirates, Nottingham Panthers and the Durham Wasps.
After a number of years Todd became a “re-classified” dual passport holder, allowing him to play for Great Britain in Pool A of the World Championships in 1994.
While in the UK, Todd had the foresight to plan for further education. He gained a degree in Sports and Exercise Science from Teeside University in Middlesborough.
His degree has helped tremendously in his post hockey. days in North America.
Todd is now a partner in MyProHero.com.
The company allows developing hockey players to schedule an online video-chat session and submit a performance video for real-time analysis by experienced coaches, the majority of which are former NHL players. The analysis will suggest strategies to improve skills over time and work on techniques to develop their game.
Shout out time
In this episode I give a shout out to Brendan Perlini, son of former Toronto Maple Leafs, Nottingham Panthers and Fife Flyers forward Fred Perlini.
Guildford born Brendan has been selected to play for Team Canada in the 2016 World Junior Hockey Championship in Helsinki.
Left winger Brendan started his career in the Guildford junior system at 5 years old, moving back to Canada at age 11.
He was chosen by the Arizona Coyotes in the 2014 NHL draft, 1st round, 12th overall. He currently plays for the Niagara Ice Dogs in the OHL.
You can hear Brendan’s father, Fred Perlini, talk about Brendan and his brother Brett in Episode 20 (link below);
the Fred Perlini Interview
You can also listen to Podcast interviews from Todd’s alumni of former Peterborough Pirates and Nottingham Panthers players:
John Lawless Episode S1 E11
Shannon Hope Episode S1 E17
Kenny Mckie Episode S1 E25
Jason Wood Episode S1 E28
Garry Unger Pt 2 Episode S2 E09
John Kidd Episode S3 E12
Mark Twaite Episode S1E02
Graham Waghorn Episode S1E06
Randal Weber Episode S1E07
Jamie Leach Episode S1E010
Frankie Killen Episode S1E12
Jimmy Keyes Episode S1E13
Paul Adey Episode S1E16
Fred Perlini Episode S1E20
Craig Melancon Episode S1E21
Gavin Fraser Episode S1E22
Kenny McKie Episode S1E25
Chuck Taylor Episode S1E29
Selmar Odelein Episode S2E01
Steve Carpenter Episode S2E06
Mario Belanger Episode S2 E10
Paul Blahyj Episode S2E12
Scott O’Connor Episode S3E03
Barry Nieckar Episode S4 E06
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