SPORT | Hockey
POSITION | Forward
YEAR OF INDUCTION | 2023
Two words to best describe Al Hinnegan as a hockey player would be 'class,' for the way he conducted himself, and 'smooth' for his quiet yet dazzling skills.
Al's greatest playing days came at the University of Michigan where he played for the Wolverines’ varsity hockey team for 4 years - 1958 through 1962.
1953 - Al was an outstanding baseball player as he was a member of the 1953 Chatham Br. 431 Legion Bantams, who won the city's first OBA minor baseball championship (2003 CSHoF Team Induction).
1952-53 - Al played with the Chatham Midget All-Stars.
1953-54 - Al played with both the Chatham Midget and Juvenile All-Stars, earning a tryout with the OHA Jr. 'A' Hamilton Red Wings, who advised he play Junior 'B'.
1954-55 - played for the Blenheim Wildcats in a four-team Jr. 'B' league with London, Sarnia and Seaforth, joined by older brother Don and cousin Pat to form the 'Hinnegan Line'.
1955-56 - Al earned a tryout with the Toronto Marlies and played for the St. Michael College Buzzers.
1956-58 - Al returned home to attend Chatham Collegiate Institute where he captained the Greenshirts to WOSSAA championships in 1956-57 and 1957-58. He totaled 63 points in 15 games in his final season including five goals and four assists in the two-game WOSSAA final against London South.
1958-62 - Al attended the University of Michigan on a hockey scholarship.
1958-59 - Red-Shirted, as freshman were unable to play varsity.
1959-62 - University of Michigan Varsity Hockey
Al was a member of Michigan's Big Ten championship teams in 1961 and 1962. He played in the NCAA Division I Final Four in 1962, playing on the first line with future NHL star Red Berenson and long-time friend Larry Babcock. A third Chatham native, Ron Coristine, also played on the 1961-62 team, the first three local players to compete in the NCAA Division I Final Four.
Al received the prestigious Yost Honor Award for the 1961-62 season, presented to a senior or junior University of Michigan student for their moral character, scholastic success, initiative capacity and leadership in intercollegiate athletics.
Al was the first local player to receive an NCAA Division I hockey scholarship and was a trailblazer to Michigan as he was followed by Larry Babcock, Ron Coristine, Mel Wakabayshi (Honoured Members), Phil Gross and Randy Trudeau from Chatham. The Michigan Wolverines had at least one local player on its roster from 1958 to 1975.
1962-64 - After graduating from Michigan with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree, Al attended the University of Western Ontario where he played hockey for two seasons with the Mustangs’ hockey team, including the school's first inter-collegiate team.
Al continued to play hockey into his 80s with the NHL Oldtimers, Michigan Alumni and Chatham Maroon Oldtimers.
1991-95 - Al later moved to Toronto and served four years as an NHL salary arbitrator, ruling on salaries for stars such as Joe Sakic, Larry Murphy and Bobby Smith.
2013 - Al won the Canadian Oldtimers Hockey Association 75-over championship with Toronto Oldtimers.
Al earned a Law degree from University of Western Ontario in 1965 and Masters of Law from the University of Chicago in 1967. He then opened the Hinnegan & Babcock law office in 1969 with his long-time friend and Michigan teammate, Larry Babcock.
Al joins his father - Don Hinnegan (Honoured Member 2004) - as the first father-son duo in the Chatham Sports Hall of Fame Legend category.