There’s no question Castlegar is a hockey town. With two indoor rinks (Pioneer Arena and the Recreation Centre) and multiple outdoor ones, there are lots of spaces to play Canada’s favourite sport. Plus there’s plenty of opportunities to cheer on your favourite players given that there’s a local Junior league team and a Varsity team.
Selkirk College has had a men’s hockey team since it opened it 1966 but the Saints hockey club has really made its mark in the past 12 years since entering the British Columbia Intercollegiate Hockey League. In that time they won the provincial championship no less than four years in a row from 2013 to 2016! The team’s home games are played at the Castlegar Recreation Centre and they’re always guaranteed to offer high-action play.
The other team that offers excellent action at the Rec Centre is the Castlegar Rebels of the Kootenay International Junior Hockey League. It’s a Junior B team that was first established in 1976 and in that time has won four championships, most recently in 2013. The team has also boasted the league’s top scorer in 2017 when forward Logan Styler took home the prize with a season record of 80 points and 54 assists.
Styler hasn’t gone on to a career with the National Hockey League yet but there have been eight other hockey players hailing from Castlegar who were drafted into the NHL and six of them played ice time for teams ranging from the Vancouver Canucks to the New York Islanders. Here are the six most successful Castlegar hockey players.
The Six Most Successful Castlegar Hockey Players Of All Time
Travis Green is by far the most successful hockey player to hail from Castlegar and he continues to make his impact on the National Hockey League living an eight-hour-drive away from his hometown in his current role as the head coach of the Vancouver Canucks.
Born: December 20, 1970
NHL Period: 1992-2007
Total Points: 455
Teams: New York Islanders, Mighty Ducks of Anaheim, Phoenix Coyotes, Toronto Maple Leafs, Boston Bruins
In 1988 Jackson was drafted in the third round, 44th overall, by the Vancouver Canucks and spent the next four years playing for farm teams before working his way up to NHL ice time in 1993.
Born: May 17, 1970
NHL Period: 1993-1998
Total Points: 18
Teams: Vancouver Canucks, Buffalo Sabres, New York Islanders
Gord, or Gordie, Walker was selected by the New York Rangers in the third round (53rd overall) of the 1983 NHL draft. Between 1986 and 1989 he played in 31 NHL games. Fun fact: In the 1970s he was the front man for the The Gordie Walker Band, the house group at The Broadway Hotel in Vancouver.
Born: August 12, 1965
NHL Period: 1986-1990
Total Points: 7
Teams: New York Rangers, Los Angeles Kings
Doug Kostynski was drafted by the Boston Bruins with the 186th overall pick in the 1982 NHL draft. He played 15 games for the Bruins.
Born: February 23, 1963
NHL Period: 1983-85
Total Points: 4
Teams: Boston Bruins
Steve Junker was drafted by the New York Islanders with the 92nd pick in the 1991 NHL draft. He played in five NHL regular-season games plus three playoff games. Interestingly, he went on to be the head coach of the Castlegar Rebels from 2010 to 2013.
Born: June 26, 1972
NHL Period: 1992-1994
Total Points: 0
Teams: New York Islanders
Darcy Martini was drafted 162nd overall by Edmonton in 1989. In the 1993–94 NHL season he played two games for Edmonton but that would be his only NHL experience. In 1996 he moved to Europe and played in the Austrian Hockey League until 2002.
Born: January 30, 1969
NHL Period: 1993-1994
Total Points: 0
Teams: Edmonton Oilers