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Stan Mikita
Stan Mikita.jpg
Born May 20, 1940 (1940-05-20) (age 77)
Sokolče, Slovak Republic
Height
Weight
5 ft 9 in (1.75 m)
169 lb (77 kg; 12 st 1 lb)
Position Centre
Shot Right
Played for Chicago Blackhawks
Ntl. team Flag of Canada.svg Canada
Playing career 1958–1980
Hall of Fame, 1983

Stanislav "Stan" Mikita (born Stanislav Guoth May 20, 1940), known colloquially as "Stosh", is a Slovak-born Canadian retired professional ice hockey player, generally regarded as the best centre of the 1960s.[citation needed] In 1961, he won the Stanley Cup with the Chicago Blackhawks, with whom he played his entire career.

BiographyEdit

Early lifeEdit

Mikita was born in Sokolče, Slovak Republic as Stanislav Guoth, but moved to St. Catharines, Ontario, as a young boy to escape Communist-controlled Czechoslovakia. He was adopted by his aunt and uncle who gave him their surname, Mikita.[1]

Playing careerEdit

After three starring junior seasons with the St. Catharines Teepees of the Ontario Hockey Association, Mikita was promoted to the parent Chicago Blackhawks in 1959. In his second full year, in 1961, the Hawks won their third Stanley Cup. The young centre led the entire league in goals during the playoffs, scoring a total of six.

The following season was his breakout year. Stan Mikita became a star as centre of the famed "Scooter Line", (with right wing Ken Wharram and left wingers Ab McDonald and Doug Mohns).[1] He became the most-feared centre of the Sixties. With superstar teammate Bobby Hull, the Black Hawks had the most powerful offense of the decade, generally leading the league in goals scored. Combining skilled defense and a reputation as one of the game's best faceoff men using his innovative curved stick, Mikita led the league in scoring four times in the decade, tying Bobby Hull's single-season scoring mark in 1966–67 with 97 points (a mark broken two years later by former teammate Phil Esposito and currently held by Wayne Gretzky).

In his early years, Mikita was among the most penalized players in the league, but he then decided to play a cleaner game and went on to win the Lady Byng Memorial Trophy for sportsmanlike conduct twice. Mikita's drastic change in behavior came after he returned home from a road trip. His wife told him that while their daughter was watching the Black Hawks' last road game on television, she turned and said, "Mommy, why does Daddy spend so much time sitting down?" The camera had just shown Mikita in the penalty box again (from Mikita's autobiography "I Play to Win.")

During his playing career, in 1973, Mikita teamed up with Chicago businessman Irv Tiahnybik to form the American Hearing Impaired Hockey Association (AHIHA), to bring together deaf and hard-of hearing hockey players from all over the country.

Mikita was reportedly the first player to ever use a curved blade on his stick and was one of the first practitioners of the slapshot.[citation needed]

RetirementEdit

His latter years marred by chronic back injuries, Mikita finally retired during the 1979–80 season.[1] Upon his retirement, he had the third-highest career scoring point total of any NHL player, after Gordie Howe and Phil Esposito. Mikita had played in the seventh most games of any player at the time. Mikita was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1983, and into the Slovak Hockey Hall of Fame in 2002. He currently serves as an ambassador of good will for the Blackhawks' organization.[2] On May 24, 2011, Mikitan was diagnosed with oral cancer and would be undergoing external beam radiation therapy.[citation needed]

Mikita made an appearance as himself in the film Wayne's World, which featured an eponymous doughnut shop. This was a spoof reference to the Canadian doughnut chain Tim Hortons, also named after a retired hockey player. A restaurant named "Stan Mikita's" and closely resembling the movie's version opened in 1994 at the Virginia amusement park Kings Dominion and at Paramount Carowinds in Charlotte. The Virginia restaurant was later converted to a Happy Days theme.

Mikita provided the foreword to the children's book "My Man Stan" by Tim Wendel.[3] Mikita is featured as a main character in the book.

Career statisticsEdit

Regular season Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts +/- PIM PP SH GW GP G A Pts PIM PP SH GW
1956–57 St. Catharines Teepees OHA-Jr. 52 16 31 47 129 14 8 9 17 44
1957–58 St. Catharines Teepees OHA-Jr. 52 31 47 78 146 8 4 5 9 46
1958–59 St. Catharines Teepees OHA-Jr. 45 38 59 97 197
1958–59 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 3 0 1 1 4
1959–60 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 67 8 18 26 119 3 0 1 1 2
1960–61 Chicago Blackhawks* NHL 66 19 34 53 100 12 6 5 11 21
1961–62 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 70 25 52 77 97 12 6 15 21 19
1962–63 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 65 31 45 76 69 6 3 2 5 2
1963–64 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 70 39 50 89 146 14 1 7 7 3 6 9 8
1964–65 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 70 28 59 87 154 8 0 6 14 3 7 10 53
1965–66 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 68 30 48 78 58 11 1 1 6 1 2 3 2
1966–67 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 70 35 62 97 12 8 1 5 6 2 2 4 2
1967–68 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 72 40 47 87 -3 14 13 2 8 11 5 7 12 6 3 0 0
1968–69 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 74 30 67 97 +17 52 7 3 2
1969–70 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 76 39 47 86 +29 50 7 0 8 8 4 6 10 2 3 0 1
1970–71 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 74 24 48 72 +21 85 7 0 4 18 5 13 18 16 1 0 1
1971–72 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 74 26 39 65 +16 46 5 0 6 8 3 1 4 4 0 0 0
1972–73 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 57 27 56 83 +31 32 7 1 5 15 7 13 20 8 1 0 2
1973–74 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 76 30 50 80 +24 46 6 2 1 11 5 6 11 8 1 0 1
1974–75 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 79 36 50 86 +14 48 12 0 6 8 3 4 7 12 1 0 1
1975–76 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 48 16 41 57 -4 37 6 0 1 4 0 0 0 4 0 0 0
1976–77 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 57 19 30 49 -9 20 6 1 4 2 0 1 1 0 0 0 0
1977–78 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 76 18 41 59 +18 35 6 0 2 4 3 0 3 0 2 0 0
1978–79 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 65 19 36 55 +3 34 4 0 1
1979–80 Chicago Blackhawks NHL 17 2 5 7 +2 12 0 0 0
OHA-Jr. totals 149 85 137 222 472 22 12 14 26 90
NHL totals 1394 541 926 1467 +159 1270 127 12 67 155 59 91 150 169 12 0 6
  • Stanley Cup Champion

Awards and accomplishmentsEdit

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

External linksEdit

Preceded by
Pit Martin
Chicago Blackhawks captains
1976–77
Succeeded by
Keith Magnuson
Preceded by
Bobby Hull
Winner of the Hart Trophy Succeeded by
Phil Esposito
Preceded by
Gordie Howe
Bobby Hull
Winner of the Art Ross Trophy
1964, 1965
1967, 1968
Succeeded by
Bobby Hull
Phil Esposito
Preceded by
Alex Delvecchio
Winner of the Lady Byng Trophy
1967, 1968
Succeeded by
Alex Delvecchio

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