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Still Putting On The Foil

Friday, June 29, 2012

Dave Hanson knows business management. He also knows how to check someone into the boards…hard.

Hanson is the general manager of the Robert Morris University Island Sports Center (ISC). He’s best known, however, for his role as Jack Hanson – one of the infamous Hanson Brothers (Hanson, and brothers Steve and Jeff Carlson) – in the 1977 feature film classic “Slap Shot,” starring Paul Newman.

Hanson was born in Cumberland, Wisconsin, and grew up in St. Paul, Minnesota, where he attended the University of Minnesota on a full scholastic scholarship after being recruited to play for the Gophers by legendary hockey coach Herb Brooks. He won two national championships with the St. Paul Vulcans Junior team before being drafted by the Minnesota Fighting Saints of the World Hockey Association. He also played in the North American Hockey League with the Johnstown (Pa.) Jets and in the NHL for both the Detroit Red Wings and the Minnesota North Stars.

(Read a recent piece about Dave on the Detroit Red Wings official website.)

Although he doesn't play competitively anymore, Hanson enjoys watching his son play center for the AHL’s Hershey Bears.

In 2002, Hanson and his fictitious brothers reprised their famous roles for “Slap Shot 2: Breaking the Ice,” and again in 2008 for “Slap Shot 3: The Junior League.” He also wrote an autobiography called Slap Shot Original. The Man. The Foil. The Legend: Dave Hanson (Oct. 2008), the sales of which benefit the Putting On The Foil Foundation.

"In 'Slap Shot,' the Hanson Brothers put foil on their knuckles before each game," he says. "It’s one of our fans’ favorite parts of the movie, so I decided to use the phrase for my foundation."

Hanson says what makes the Island Sports Center such an asset to RMU and the community in general is that it’s a great place for people of all ages and abilities who like to skate, play golf, or work out. "And it gives them a place to do it in a safe and fun way."

As the Pittsburgh region's premier sports and recreation destination, the ISC is a 32-acre state-of-the-art center featuring ice skating, hockey, miniature golf, and an indoor driving range. The center provides high quality facilities for training, events, services, and family entertainment for guests of all ages and is also home to RMU’s Division I men’s and women’s ice hockey teams.

Today the Hanson brothers continue to travel throughout North America and Europe making appearances and signing autographs for their adoring fans, all in the name of charity.

"The connection with millions of people who are great fans of the movies and the Hanson Brothers has been a thrill," says Hanson, "and it’s given me the opportunity to help many of them through charity work."