Ducks Will Retire Kariya’s #9 [VIDEO]
The NHL's Anaheim Ducks will retire former UMaine Black Bear Paul Kariya's #9 in special ceremonies planned for October 21st.
25 years ago, Kariya was the first-ever draft pick of the Ducks in the 1993 draft (#4 overall pick). They were the 'Mighty Ducks' back then.
After his brilliant career playing for the Black Bears, Kariya went on to have a Hall of Fame career. He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame last year.
He played 606 games for Anaheim before moving on to the other NHL teams. Kariya totaled 300 goals and 369 assists for 669 points in those 606 games. He had a 50 goal season, a 100 point season for the Ducks. Kariya also led the team to the Stanley Cup Finals in 2003.
At UMaine, Kariya had one of the greatest freshman years a player can have - 25 goals, 75 assists for 100 points and a NCAA championship in 1992-93. He played in 12 games the following year before joining the Canadian National Team and eventually turning pro and signing with Anaheim.
Kariya's #9 UMaine number is also retired (along with #8 Scott Pellerin, #19 Jim Montgomery).
NOTE: The Ducks are celebrating their 25th year during the upcoming season. Along with Kariya's #9, the team will also retire Scott Niedermayer's #27. Quotes from the team...
"Paul Kariya and Scott Niedermayer both had an enormous impact on our franchise." said Ducks Owners Henry and Susan Samueli. "Paul was the club's first superstar player, helped put Anaheim on the NHL map and electrified fans with his speed and play-making ability. Scott led our team to the first Stanley Cup in California's history with a Conn Smythe performance in 2007 that will be remembered in this community forever.
"Although Paul and Scott played in different eras of Ducks hockey, they shared similar traits: to captain the Ducks with class, dignity and determination."