It was while growing up in Dryden that this exceptional hockey player first developed the skills that would see him become one of the games most decorated defensive stars. The Dryden High School Eagles top scorer and MVP, his amateur career included winning a gold medal at the 1991 Canada Winter Games and bringing home gold for Canada from the 1993 World Junior Championships. Playing junior in the Ontario Hockey League with the Peterborough Petes from 1991-93, he helped lead the team to the 1992-93 Memorial Cup finals and was named the Canadian Hockey League Major Junior Defenceman of the Year.
Selected 2nd overall as the first pick of the Hartford Whalers in the 1993 NHL amateur draft, the highest northwestern Ontario pick up to that point, he donned his signature #44 jersey, going on to earn a spot on the NHL All-Rookie Team. Traded to St. Louis at the start of the 1995-96 season, his six foot six frame and aggressive style of play saw him become a strong defensive star and team leader, serving as the Captain of the Blues from 1997-2002. His career-high 62-point season in 1999-2000 earned him a spot on the First All-Star Team and the Norris Trophy as the NHL's top defenceman and the Hart Trophy as league MVP.
Moving to the Edmonton Oilers after nine seasons in St. Louis, his 56 points during the regular season and 5 goals and 16 assists in 24 playoff games, helped lead the team all the way to Game 7 of the 2005-06 Stanley Cup finals. The following season he once again made it to the finals, this time winning the Stanley Cup with the 2006-07 Anaheim Ducks.
Acquired by the Philadelphia Flyers in 2009 he made one more trip to the Stanley Cup finals in 2010 before injuries forced him to step away from the game in 2012, leaving behind an 18 season NHL playing career that included 698 points (157 goals, 541 assists) in 1167 regular season games. Following his retirement, he went on to contribute his expertise to the NHL's Department of Player Safety and to the administrative side of the game.
In addition to his Stanley Cup win, he also claimed gold for Canada at the 1997 World Championships and the 2002 and 2010 Olympics, making him a member of the exclusive Triple Gold Club. Earning entry into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2015, and named one of the NHL's 100 greatest players of all time, he will forever hold a place of prominence amongst the hockey greats of northwestern Ontario.
Inducted into the Northwestern Ontario Sports Hall of Fame, September 30th, 2017