Doug Wickenheiser - Athlete: Hockey -
Doug’s hockey career, which spanned 21 years, began in 1969, when he began playing as an 8 year old in Regina’s minor hockey programs. Doug established himself as a high-scoring player early, when in his 1972-73 season with the Earlybirds, he scored a record-setting 100 goals. As a midget with the Pat Canadians, he again was high scorer and received the Ernie Hicke Trophy for his accomplishment.
In 1977, Doug joined the Regina Pats and in his final year with the team had 89 goals and 170 points in 71 games, claiming the WCHL scoring championship, helping the Pats win the league title and advancing to the Memorial Cup in Regina. That year he was selected the outstanding player in Canadian junior hockey.
In June 1980, Doug was the first overall draft choice of the NHL’s Montreal Canadiens. During his NHL career, he played for Montreal, the St. Louis Blues, the Vancouver Canucks, the New York Rangers and the Washington Capitals. During his 556 regular season games, he scored 111 goals and made 165 assists. He also played in the International Hockey League, the American Hockey League, for Canada’s National Team, and professionally in Italy, Germany and Austria.
Doug made his mark in St. Louis not only as a player but also as a representative of the St. Louis Blues hockey team in establishing the Gateway Hockey School. After his NHL career was over, Doug returned to St. Louis with his wife Dianna. In 1997, when he was diagnosed with inoperable cancer, the St. Louis Blues helped raise money to finance his treatments. Doug directed that money to assist children facing expenses for their cancer treatments. After Doug’s death in 1999, the Blues established the Fourteen Fund (Doug’s number while playing for the Blues) as their charitable trust. The fund is recognized with a flag that adorns the team’s arena.
In March 1999, the Regina Pats retired Doug’s jersey – number 12. The Western Hockey League annually recognizes a player for contributing to his community with the Doug Wickenheiser Memorial Trophy and the City of Regina has named an indoor rink in his honour.