We are slowly working our way back to present day, but the 1980’s tour of First Round Draft Picks of the Pittsburgh Penguins would not be complete unless we include Zarley Zalapski. Undoubtedly one of the greatest sports names of all time!
Zalapski was drafted in 1986 and played 15 games for the Pens the following season. The season after that, he played almost the entire season for the Penguins and scored 12 goals and 45 points and was named to the NHL All Rookie Team. He was also an All Star in 1993. Another interesting Stat for Zarley is the fact that he registered 648 penalty minutes in 632 career games.
Zarley Zalapski played 11 NHL seasons, 3 of which were for the Penguins before being traded along with John Cullen and Jeff Parker other to the Hartford Whalers for Ulf Samuellson, Grant Jennings, and Ron Francis the same season the Penguins won their first Stanley Cup. Zalapski was a very good offensive defensman and had career high in goals his 91-92 season and a career high in points the following season.
Zalapsky played for the Canadien National Team during World Championships in the late 80’s and played for Team Canada during the 1988 Olympics. He finished his career playing in Europe where he stayed and retired. He was married and became a Swiss Citizen.