Russ Courtnall shooting the puck

Russ Courtnall shooting the puck

Sipping from hockey's Holy Grail was an experience that eluded Russ Courtnall. Nevertheless, his speed and puck-handling ability made him an exciting player to watch, from his Junior Cougar days in Victoria, throughout his 16-year National Hockey League career. Russ and older brother Geoff form one of the most prolific and long-lasting brother combinations in NHL history. Each played more than 1,000 games and together they scored 664 regular season goals. Russ Courtnall's talent was evident early on as he skated and competed on par with players much older. While he enjoyed playing soccer and baseball, once he devoted himself to hockey it was clear he would catch the eye of the professional scouts. The Toronto Maple Leafs were particularly interested and selected him seventh overall in the 1983 draft when he was 17 and playing junior hockey. He scored 66 points in 32 games with the Cougars the following season, joined the Canadian national team before being called up by the Leafs for good. He spent four more full seasons with the Toronto before being dealt to Montreal. The Habs went to the 1989 Cup final that year but lost out to the Calgary Flames. Russ played for four more NHL clubs including Minnesota, Dallas, Vancouver and New York. As well, he represented Canada in world competitions four times as a junior and pro. He had nine 20 goals or better seasons, finishing with 297 goals along with 447 assists by the time he retired in 1999 as a member of the Los Angeles Kings.


Victoria enjoys a stellar sports history and we celebrate the many athletes, teams and builders who have contributed to that history.  Our displays are seen at the Save-On-Foods Memorial Centre (1925 Blanshard St.)  through Gate Three.


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