One of the most popular players to ever suit up for the Vancouver Canucks has died.
Wayne (Gino) Odjick, who played 12 seasons in the NHL for the Canucks, New York Islanders, Philadelphia Flyers and Montreal Canadiens, died at the age of 52.
Gino’s sister, Dina Odjick, shared the news Sunday on Facebook of his passing.
“Our hearts are broken. My brother Gino Odjick has left us for the spirit world,” she wrote.
Odjick spent the first eight seasons of his career with the Canucks after being selected by them in the 1990 entry draft, before being traded to the New York Islanders for Jason Strudwick in March, 1998.
In 2014, Odjick was diagnosed with Amyloidosis – a disease he says attacked his organs and his heart.
The former enforcer had 64 goals and 73 assists in 605 NHL games. Odjick was a key member of the 1994 Canucks Stanley Cup finalist team, playing 10 games in the playoffs for the team that lost a physical seven-game series to the New York Rangers.
Odjick also did a lot of community work.
He holds a Canucks team record, with his 2,127 penalty minutes being the most in franchise history.
“Gino was a fan favourite from the moment he joined the organization, putting his heart and soul into every shift on and off the ice,” said Francesco Aquilini, the Canucks’ chairman and governor.
“He inspired many and embodied what it means to be a Canuck. Personally, he was a close friend and confidant, someone I could lean on for advice and support. He will be deeply missed.”