Jari Kurri (born May 18, 1960, in Helsinki, Finland) is a retired Finnish professional ice hockey right winger. He is a member of the Hockey Hall of Fame.
He began his pro career with Jokerit in the Finnish SM-liiga, played his first nine and a half NHL seasons with the Edmonton Oilers, and was then traded to the Los Angeles Kings where he was reunited with Wayne Gretzky, who is godfather to Jari's twin boys by his ex-wife Tiina.
He was traded to the New York Rangers in 1996, where he played for a half season. He was then dealt to the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim where he played for 1 season, before finally signing with the Colorado Avalanche, where he would play 1 season. Kurri won five Stanley Cups, all with Edmonton (1984, 1985, 1987, 1988, and 1990). His best season was 1984-85 when he had 135 points and scored 50 goals in his first 50 games, however his 50th game was the Oilers' 53rd game so it does not count as an official 50 goals in 50 games. A year later, he would lead the league in goals with 68.
While he was definitely a very talented player, Kurri was helped by the fact that he often played with Gretzky (every 5th goal Gretzky scored was assisted by Kurri, while he assisted on 60f Kurri's goals.) Kurri was often the recipient of Gretzky's passes, but he turned chances into goals with his brilliant finishing ability. Kurri was not a lone sniper; he was "by far our most complete player" according to Oilers' director of personnel Barry Fraser. Although Kurri never won the Selke Trophy, he was regarded as one of the best defensive forwards in the NHL.
Kurri's 19 goals in the 1985 post-season (18 games played) tied an NHL record set by the Philadelphia Flyers' Reggie Leach in the 1976 playoffs (16 games played). He also had three hat tricks in the conference finals, another feat that no player has ever equalled.
He is the first Finn to be inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame. His 1398 points are 18th all-time, and the second highest among Europeans behind Jaromir Jagr. He is 14th in all-time goals with 601. He is the second leading scorer in Oiler history, with 1,043 points in 754 games, behind only Gretzky. His #17 is retired by the Oilers and the Finnish national men's ice hockey team.
He has a trophy named after him in the SM-liiga; the Jari Kurri trophy. Kurri is currently the General Manager of the Finnish national men's ice hockey team. He married former Miss Finland, Vanessa Kurri, nÃ©e Forsman, in 2004; they have 2 children.