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Our Legacy

In 1963, Eugene George and a group of Kitchener businessmen brought the Guelph Royals, a farm team of the NHL’s New York Rangers, to Kitchener and renamed them the Kitchener Rangers Junior “A” Hockey Club.

1963_Eugene_George_2  

“We wanted to put a Junior “A” team on the ice that Kitchener would be proud of,” recalled George.

“We wanted to prove we could put together a competitive local team.”

In the Kitchener Rangers first league game, John Beechey makes history by scoring the franchise’s first goal against the St. Catharines Black Hawks. Sandy Fitzpatrick – the Rangers’ first captain – broke a 3-3 tie to give the Rangers’ its first franchise victory, 4-3, over the Hawks.

 

1963, 1st goal puck in franchise history

Sandy Fitzpatrick - the Rangers’ first captain – broke a 3-3 tie to give the Rangers’ its first franchise victory, 4-3, over the St. Catharines Black Hawks.

The New York Rangers sponsorship of the team ended in 1967 with the expansion of the NHL’s “Original Six’” Era, so on July 7, 1967, George agreed to purchase the team from the New York Rangers for a sum of one dollar. He declined the opportunity for private ownership but instead turned the team over to the community through the creation of a not-for-profit organization.

To this day there is not one, lone “owner” of the club; instead, a 39-person Board of Directors is elected by the club’s season ticket members each year to act as the “trustees” of the storied franchise. This Board of Directors is comprised entirely and only of Kitchener Rangers’ season ticket members.

The Kitchener Rangers celebrated their 50th anniversary season in 2012-13 and are entering their 58th season in 2021-22 due to the 2020-21 Season being cancelled.

Since the Club’s inception in 1963, the Kitchener Rangers have seen over 180+ former players earn their way to the National Hockey League. They have also produced 156 players selected by teams in the NHL Entry Draft; 28 of those players selected in the first round.

Hall of Fame They boast five alumni – Bill Barber, Larry Robinson, Al MacInnis, Scott Stevens and Paul Coffey – who are inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame.

The Kitchener Rangers have earned a berth in the OHL Final to compete for the J. Ross Robertson Cup on eight occasions, claiming championships in 1981, 1982, 2003 and 2008.

They have appeared in six Memorial Cups (1981, 1982, 1984, 1990, 2003 and 2008), advancing to the final game of the tournament each of those six years.

They are two-time Memorial Cup champions (1982, 2003).

Captains

Captains_Header

Year  Captain / Captains Year Captain / Captains
1963-64 Alexander “Sandy” Fitzpatrick 2013-14 Ben Fanelli
1964-65 Alexander “Sandy” Fitzpatrick 2014-15 Liam Maaskant
1965-66 John Beechey – same year – Bob JonesBilly Hway 2015-16 Ryan MacInnis
1966-67 Walter Tkaczuk 2016-17 Frank Hora
1967-68 Walter Tkaczuk 2017-18 Connor Bunnaman
1968-69 Cam Crosby 2018-19 Rickard Hugg
1969-70 Dave Cressman 2019-20 Greg Meireles, Riley Damiani
1970-71 Ted Scharf
1971-72 Bill Barber
1972-73 Less Burgess
1973-74 Paul Evans
1974-75 Larry Huras – same year – Dan Djakolvic – Dwight Foster
1975-76 Dwight Foster
1976-77 Dwight Foster
1977-78 Don Maloney
1978-79 Paul Reinhart
1979-80 Jim Pavese
1980-81 Joe McDonnell – same year – Brian Bellows
1981-82 Brian Bellows
1982-83 Mike Eagles
1983-84 Jim Quinn
1984-85 Garnet McKechny – same year – Kent Paynter
1985-86 Shawn Burr
1986-87 Dave Letta
1987-88 Kevin Grant
1988-89 Mark Montanari
1989-90 Steven Rice
1990-91 Steven Rice
1991-92 Mike Polano
1992-93 Mike Polano
1993-94 Tim Spitzig
1994-95 Tim Spitzig
1995-96 Brian Scott
1996-97 Ryan Pepperall
1997-98 Jason Byrnes
1998-99 Darren Mortier
1999-00 Serge Payer
2000-01 Chris Cava
2001-02 Nick Policelli
2002-03 Derek Roy
2003-04 Mike Richards
2004-05 Mike Richards
2005-06 Mark Fraser
2006-07 Jean-Michel Rizk – same year – Peter Tsimikalis
2007-08 Matt Pepe
2008-09 Ben Shutron – same year – Dan Kelly
2009-10 Dan Kelly
2010-11 Gabriel Landeskog
2011-12 Michael Catenacci
2012-13 Ryan Murphy

 

Head Coaches

Coaches_Header

Year  Head Coach Year Head Coach
1963-64 Steve Brklacich 2013-14 Troy Smith
1964-65 Floyd “Butch” Martin 2014-15 Troy Smith
1965-66 Wally Kullman 2015-16 Mike Van Ryn
1966-67 Wally Kullman 2016-17 Jay McKee
1967-68 Wally Kullman 2017-18 Jay McKee
1968-69 Wally Kullman 2018-19 Jay McKee
1969-70 Gerry Forler 2019-20 Jay McKee (Replaced by Mike McKenzie)
1970-71 Gerry Forler (Replaced by Ron Murphy)
1971-72 Ron Murphy
1972-73 Eddie Bush
1973-74 Eddie Bush
1974-75 Eddie Bush (Replaced by Don McKee; Replaced by Jim Morrison)
1975-76 Mac MacLean
1976-77 Mac MacLean
1977-78 Mac MacLean (Replaced by Bob Ertel)
1978-79 Bob Ertel
1979-80 Bob Ertel (Replaced by Rod Seiling)
1980-81 Orval Tessier
1981-82 Joe Crozier
1982-83 Joe Crozier
1983-84 Tom Barrett
1984-85 Tom Barrett
1985-86 Tom Barrett
1986-87 Tom Barrett (Replaced by Joe McDonnell)
1987-88 Joe McDonnell
1988-89 Joe McDonnell
1989-90 Joe McDonnell
1990-91 Joe McDonnell
1991-92 Joe McDonnell
1992-93 Joe McDonnell
1993-94 Joe McDonnell
1994-95 Joe McDonnell (Replaced by Geoff Ward)
1995-96 Geoff Ward
1996-97 Geoff Ward
1997-98 Geoff Ward
1998-99 Brian Hayton
1999-00 Brian Hayton (Replaced by Jeff Snyder)
2000-01 Jeff Snyder
2001-02 Peter DeBoer
2002-03 Peter DeBoer
2003-04 Peter DeBoer
2004-05 Peter DeBoer
2005-06 Peter DeBoer
2006-07 Peter DeBoer
2007-08 Peter DeBoer
2008-09 Steve Spott
2009-10 Steve Spott
2010-11 Steve Spott
2011-12 Steve Spott
2012-13 Steve Spott

 

IIHF World Junior Championship (U20)

Future Stars on the World Stage
The following Kitchener Rangers have represented their countries at the IIHF World Junior Championships.

TEAM CANADA
1983 – Mike Eagles
1987 – David Latta
1989 – Gus Morschauser
1990 – Steven Rice
1991 – Steven Rice
1997 – Boyd Devereaux [GOLD]
1997 – Dan Lebold – Trainer [GOLD]
2003 – Gregory Campbell [SILVER]
2003 – Steve Eminger [SILVER]
2003 – Derek Roy [SILVER]
2004 – Mike Richards [SILVER]
2005 – Mike Richards [GOLD]
2005 – Peter DeBoer – Coach [GOLD]
2008 – Matt Halischuk [GOLD]
2008 – Steve Mason [GOLD]
2010 – Steve Spott – Coach [SILVER]
2010 – Dan Lebold – Trainer [SILVER]
2011 – Dan Lebold – Trainer [SILVER]
2013 – Ryan Murphy
2013 – Steve Spott – Coach

INTERNATIONAL TEAMS
2004 – Petr Kanko (Czech Republic)
2005 – Boris Valabik (Slovakia)
2006 – Boris Valabik (Slovakia)
2006 – Jakub Kindl (Czech Republic)
2007 – Yannick Weber (Switzerland)
2007 – Jakub Kindl (Czech Republic)
2008 – Mikkel Boedker (Denmark)
2008 – Yannick Weber (Switzerland)
2009 – Josh Unice (USA)
2009 – Simon Gronvaldt (Denmark)
2010 – Jeremy Morin (USA) [GOLD]
2011 – Gabriel Landeskog (Sweden)
2011 – Tobias Rieder (Germany)

2012 – John Gibson (USA)
2012 – Radek Faksa (Czech Republic)
2012 – Tobias Rieder (Germany)
2013 – Radek Faksa (Czech Republic)
2013 – John Gibson (USA)
2013 – Tobias Rieder (Germany)
2014 – Radek Faksa (Czech Republic)
2016 – Ryan MacInnis (USA) [BRONZE]
2016 – Dmitrii Sergeev (Russia) [SILVER]
2017 – Jeremy Bracco (USA) [GOLD]
2018 – Adam Liska (Slovakia)

 

 

NHL Alumnus

The following players spent time in the Kitchener Rangers organization before graduating to the NHL. Players are listed by their last season as a member of the Rangers, with their NHL debuts listed in parentheses.

1963-64
Gary Sabourin (1967-68)
Trevor Fahey (1964-65)

1964-65
Alexander “Sandy” Fitzpatrick (1964-65)
Tom Miller (1970-71)

1965-66
Bob Jones (1968-69)
Randy Legge (1972-73)
Bob Cook (1970-71)
Claire Alexander (1974-75)
Gordon Kannegiesser (1967-68)

1966-67
Tim Ecclestone (1967-68)
Sheldon Kannegiesser (1970-71)
Gary Kurt (1971-72)
Robbie Irons (1968-69)

1967-68
Don Luce (1969-70)
Walt Tkaczuk (1967-68)
Jack Egers (1969-70)
Mike Robitaille (1969-70)
Danny Seguin (1970-71)
Lee Inglis (1973-74)
Denis Dupere (1970-71)
Jim Krulicki (1970-71)
Ab Demarco (1969-70)
Jim Jones (1971-72)
Billy Orr (1973-74)
Pete Donnelly (1972-73)

1968-69
Brian Glenwright (1972-73)
Bob Whitlock (1969-70)
Sean Shanahan (1975-76)
Paul Hoganson (1970-71)

1969-70
Gerry O’Flaherty (1971-72)
Dave Cressman (1974-75)
Joe Noris (1971-72)
Jim Nahrgang (1974-75)
Bob Hurlburt (1974-75)
Hank Lehvonen (1974-75)
Dennis McCord (1973-74)
Cam Newton (1970-71)

1970-71
Larry Robinson (1972-73)
Ted Scharf (1972-73)
Ralph Hopiavouri (1972-73)

1971-72
Bill Barber (1972-73)
Jerry Byers (1972-73)
Tom Cassidy (1977-78)
Chris Meloff (1972-73)
Dan Hinton (1976-77)
Chris Ahrens (1972-73)

1972-73
Glen Richardson (1975-76)
Bob Blanchet (1974-75)

1973-74
Paul Evans (1978-79)
Peter Sturgeon (1979-80)
Dave Maloney (1974-75)
Rick Chartraw (1974-75)
Ron Sedlbauer (1974-75)
Tony White (1974-75)
Doug Risebrough (1974-75)
Brian Bye (1975-76)

1974-75
Joe Fortunato (1976-77)
Rick Bourbonnais (1975-76)
Claude Noel (1979-80)
Larry Huras (1976-77)
Don Edwards (1976-77)

1975-76
Reid Bailey (1980-81)
Bill Stewart (1977-78)
Brad Maxwell (1977-78)
John Baby (1977-78)

1976-77
Dwight Foster (1977-78)
Don “Red” Laurence (1977-78)

1977-78
Don Maloney (1978-79)
Dale Hunter (1980-81)
Gaston Gingras (1978-79)
Bob Parent (1981-82)

1978-79
Paul Reinhart (1979-80)
Doug Sulliman (1979-80)
Jody Gage (1980-81)
Bennett Wolf (1980-81)

1979-80
Paul Coffey (1980-81)
Paul Pooley (1984-85)
Doug Shedden (1981-82)
Walt Poddubny (1981-82)
Darwin McCutcheon (1981-82)

1980-81
Russ Adam (1982-83)
Joe McDonnell (1981-82)
Jim Pavese (1981-82)
Rob Whistle (1985-86)
Orval Tessier – Coach (1982-83)

1981-82
Brian Bellows (1982-83)
Grant Martin (1983-84)
Jeff Larmer (1981-82)
Scott Stevens (1982-83)
Lou Crawford (1989-90)
Mike Moher (1982-83)
Paul Higgins (1981-82)

1982-83
Al MacInnis (1981-82)
Mike Eagles (1982-83)
Mike Hough (1984-85)
Wendell Young (1985-86)
Jim Sandlak (1985-86)

1983-84
John Tucker (1983-84)
David Bruce (1985-86)
David Shaw (1982-83)
Peter Bakovic (1987-88)
Nick Kypreos (1989-90)
Ray LeBlanc (1991-92)

1984-85
Brian Wilks (1984-85)
Shawn Burr (1984-85)
Wayne Presley (1984-85)
Mike Stevens (1984-85)
Kent Paynter (1987-88)
Craig Wolanin (1985-86)

1985-86
Brett MacDonald (1987-88)
Dave McLlwain (1987-88)
Rob Dopson (1993-94)

1986-87
Max Middendorf (1986-87)
David Latta (1985-86)
Warren Rychel (1988-89)
David Haas (1990-91)

1988-89
Kirk Tomlinson (1987-88)
Darren Rumble (1990-91)

1989-90
Gilbert Dionne (1990-91)
Shayne Stevenson (1990-91)
Jason York (1992-93)

1990-91
Steven Rice (1990-00)

1991-92
Chris LiPuma (1992-93)
Mike Torchia (1994-95)
Dennis Bonvie (1994-95)

1992-93
Todd Warriner (1994-95)

1994-95
Eric Manlow (2000-01)
Jason Morgan (1996-97)
Garrett Burnett (2003-04)

1996-97
Boyd Devereaux (1997-98)

1999-00
Sean McMorrow (2002-03)
Serge Payer (2000-01)
Andrew Peters (2003-04)
Allan Rourke (2003-04)

2002-03
Gregory Campbell (2003-04)
Steve Eminger (2002-03)
Derek Roy (2003-04)

2003-04
Petr Kanko (2005-06)

2004-05
Andre Benoit (2010-11)
David Clarkson (2006-07)
Paul McFarland (2002-05)
Mike Richards (2005-06)

2005-06
Patrick Davis (2008-09)
Mark Fraser (2006-07)
Matt Lashoff (2006-07)
Boris Valabik (2007-08)

2006-07
Steve Downie (2007-08)
Jakub Kindl (2009-10)
Kevin Henderson (2012-13)
Mike Hoffman (2011-12)
Victor Oreskovich (2009-10)

2007-08
Mikkel Boedker (2008-09)
Peter DeBoer – Coach (2008-09)
Mike Duco (2009-10)
Matt Halischuk (2008-09)
Nazem Kadri (2009-10)
Steve Mason (2008-09)
Nick Spaling (2009-10)
Phil Varone (2013-14)
Yannick Weber (2008-09)

2008-09
Robert Bortuzzo (2011-12)
Brandon Mashinter (2010-11)
Scott Timmins (2010-11)

2009-10
John Moore (2010-11)
Jeremy Morin (2010-11)
Shane Prince (2014-15)
Jeff Skinner (2010-11)

2010-11
Jason Akeson (2012-13)
Jerry D’Amigo (2013-14)
Gabriel Landeskog (2011-12)
Jamie Doornbosch (2010-11)

2011-12
Julian Melchiori (2013-14)
Tyler Randell (2015-16)

2012-13
Andrew Crescenzi (2009-12)
Frank Corrado (2012-13)
John Gibson (2011-12)
Joshua Leivo (2013-14)
Ryan Murphy (2012-13)
Matt Puempel (2014-15)
Tobias Rieder (2014-15)
Steve Spott – Coach (2014-15)

2013-14
Radek Faksa (2015-16)
Evan McEneny (2016-17)
Ben Thomson (2016-17)

2014-15
Justin Bailey (2015-16)

2017-18
Logan Brown (2017-18)

 

 

Hall of Famers

 

Bill Barber – Larry Robinson – Paul Coffey – Scott Stevens – Al MacInnis

In 1998, the Kitchener Rangers established an NHL Hall of Fame banner program to showcase Rangers’ alumni who have been inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame. A banner has been raised to the rafters of the Aud in honour of each player to permanently recognize their accomplishments as some of the best players to ever play the game.