A role player who bounced between the minor leagues and the NHL in the 1980s, Mike Moller is a junior hockey legend in Canada.
Born in Calgary, Moller was chosen 41st overall by the Buffalo Sabres in 1980 after two outstanding seasons in the WHL with the Lethbridge Broncos. A WHL all star, Moller became a hockey legend in Canada when he scored 14 points in seven games to help Canada win its first gold medal at the World Junior Championships. That 1982 team was the first Canadian team in the famed "Program of Excellence."
That 1982 team, which featured both Mike and his brother Randy, will forever be remembered as the Canadian team that sang their own anthem after capturing gold. The hosts in Rochester, Minnesota inexplicably did not have a copy of the Canadian national anthem to play at the gold medal ceremony.
"The bottom line is they should have played it because we had won the gold medal," said Mike Moller.
But the proud Canadians came up with their own solution.
"It wasn't planned, but finally a few guys at the end of the line said, 'Sing it ourselves, boys,'" Moller said. "So we stood there shoulder to shoulder and belted out what was probably the worst rendition of our national anthem."
The song may have been out of key, but it never sounded better. And ever since Canadian teams belt out "O Canada" loud and proud when winning an international hockey tournament.
That proved to be Mike Moller's most famous moment in hockey. Moller stuck with the Buffalo Sabres starting in the 1982-83 season, though his offensive game never developed. In 1983-84 he played on a line with Dave Andreychuk and Paul Cyr, but could only muster 16 points in 59 games before a shoulder injury ended his season prematurely.
After spending most of the 1984-85 season in the minors, Moller was traded to the Edmonton Oilers where he played in 6 games during the Oilers Stanley Cup championship season. However he would continue to toil mostly in the AHL for four years.
Moller, the older brother of another former Sabre Randy Moller, returned to the scenes of his hockey glory for the 1988-89 season. He joined the Canadian national team in 1988-89, scoring 34 points in 58 games despite being continually hampered by the shoulder injury.
After the national team season ended, Moller played twelve games for the AHL's Binghamton Whalers before retiring.
Moller returned to Alberta after his playing days were over. Moller, who worked as a golf pro during hockey off-seasons, became very active in amateur hockey in Red Deer, Alberta. In addition to briefly coaching with the WHL Red Deer Rebels franchise, he assumed a position as Red Deer Minor Hockey Commission's board of directors, coached minor hockey and instructed at hockey schools.