Donald McSween

Donald Kennedy "Don" McSween (born June 9, 1964 in Detroit, Michigan) is an American former professional ice hockey player who played in the National Hockey League (NHL) for two clubs in the late 1980s and early 1990s. A defenseman known for his adept puck-handling skills as well as his quick mobility, McSween, a two-time All American, was successful during his college career at Michigan State University, leading the team to the NCAA Division I Men's Ice Hockey National Championship in 1986.

Donald McSween
Born (1964-06-09) June 9, 1964
Detroit, MI, U.S.
Height 5 ft 11 in (180 cm)
Weight 197 lb (89 kg; 14 st 1 lb)
Position Defense
Shot Left
Played for Buffalo Sabres
Mighty Ducks of Anaheim
National team  United States
NHL Draft 84th overall, 1983
Buffalo Sabres
Playing career 19872002

He was also quite successful while playing in the minor league. Following his impressive college career, McSween went on to play for the Buffalo Sabres (NHL). He was selected 84th in the 1983 NHL Draft, with a height of 5'11" a weight of 197 lb, and shooting left. After this stint, he played for the Rochester Americans (AHL), and the San Diego Gulls (IHL). In fact, McSween continues to hold American records for points scored by a defenseman in a career: 215 goals. In 1989–90 McSween was selected as an AHL First-Team All-Star. McSween also won myriad awards playing as a member of the Americans. He won five straight team Defensive Player of the Year awards (1987–92).

He also had a short but notable career as a player for the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim. However, his chances of becoming a prominent National Hockey League player were severed after a serious arm injury in January 1995 at Winnipeg, when involved in a fight with another player, Keith Tkachuk. The tendons in McSween's left wrist were severely damaged after being severed by Tkachuk's skate. The nerve and tendon injury never fully healed, preventing him from being able to fully close his left hand, his shooting arm, effectively ending McSween's professional career. Ironically, McSween had severed the Achilles tendon of another promising player, Teemu Selänne, earlier in his career (Selänne would go on to make a full recovery, playing for 2 decades). After his injury McSween went on to play in the AHL (American Hockey League) for the Baltimore Bandits; in the IHL (International Hockey League) for the Grand Rapids Griffins and later Milwaukee Admirals; and in the UHL (United Hockey League) for the Muskegon Fury.

McSween lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan, working as an electrical engineer and a volunteer coach for local Youth Hockey Leagues. He is raising two boys and a daughter with his wife. As a youth, he played in the 1977 Quebec International Pee-Wee Hockey Tournament with a minor ice hockey team from Detroit.[1]

Awards and honors

Award Year
All-CCHA First Team 1984–85 [2]
CCHA All-Tournament Team 1985 [3]
All-CCHA First Team 1985–86 [2]
AHCA West Second-Team All-American 1985–86 [4]
All-NCAA All-Tournament Team 1986 [5]
All-CCHA First Team 1986–87 [2]
AHCA West Second-Team All-American 1986–87 [4]
CCHA All-Tournament Team 1987 [3]
All-NCAA All-Tournament Team 1987 [5]


  1. "Pee-Wee players who have reached NHL or WHA" (PDF). Quebec International Pee-Wee Hockey Tournament. 2018. Retrieved 2019-01-13.
  2. "All-CCHA Teams". College Hockey Historical Archives. Retrieved 2013-07-27.
  3. "2012-13 CCHA Media Guide". Retrieved 2014-04-23.
  4. "Men's Ice Hockey Award Winners" (PDF). Retrieved June 11, 2013.
  5. "NCAA Frozen Four Records" (PDF). Retrieved 2013-06-19.
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