Stan Smyl (born January 28, 1958 in Glendon, Alberta, Canada) was a member of the NHL's Vancouver Canucks for his entire career, until he retired in 1991. His number 12 remains the only officially retired number in Canucks' history (Wayne Maki's number 11 is unofficially retired), and it currently hangs from the rafters of General Motors Place in Vancouver (although the banner was initially raised in the Canucks' old facility, the Pacific Coliseum). A long-time team captain, the man nicknamed "the Steamer" is considered one of the most popular Canucks of all time. Until the 2003-04 NHL season, he held many offensive scoring records on the team.
Smyl played junior hockey for the West Coast Hockey League's New Westminster Bruins, considered one of the greatest junior teams of all time, from 1975 until 1978. In the 1978-79 season, he played 3 games for the Central Hockey League's Dallas Black Hawks. Smyl was then drafted in the 1978 NHL Amateur Draft (renamed the Entry Draft in 1979) by the Canucks 40th overall in the 3rd Round.
Entering the NHL in 1978-79, he didn't disappoint. Scoring 14 goals and 38 points in 62 games as a rookie, Smyl earned respect of the Vancouver fanbase. He also proved to be physical, earning 89 penalty minutes as well.
Vancouver fans will remember the 1981-82 season, as that was the year the Canucks made the Stanley Cup Finals for the first time in their 12 year history. Though they were swept in four games by the New York Islanders, the team gained respect.
The next season, Smyl was named captain of the Canucks, a position he held for the next 8 years. Throughout this time, he led the Canucks, who had little success in either the regular season or playoffs.
The 1990-91 NHL season was the last season in which Smyl played hockey, (before the start of the season, he resigned the captaincy). Retiring with Canuck records in games, goals, assists, points, and numerous other categories, he was one of the most popular players on the team. The day of his retirement, July 3, 1991, also marked the start of a 13 year coaching career, as he was named Assistant Coach of the Canucks. He would hold this position until 1999, when he was hired as Coach of the Canucks affiliate, the American Hockey League's Syracuse Crunch, the International Hockey League's Kansas City Blades, and then the AHL's Manitoba Moose. Currently he is now back with the Canuck's, as the Director of Player Development.
During the 2002-03 and 2003-04 seasons, another popular Canuck, Trevor Linden, broke Smyl's goals and points records. If he continues, Linden will break most of Smyl's records by the time his career ends.
Preceded by: Kevin McCarthy Vancouver Canucks captains 1982-1990 Succeeded by: Doug Lidster Trevor Linden Dan Quinn