Ward put on the jerseys for six different National Hockey League teams,
he wore a Fighting Sioux jersey from 1989 until 1992.
time at UND, the Leduc, Alberta native became -- and remains -- the only
player in UND's storied history to accumulate 100 career goals and 100
career assists. He amassed 110 goals and 109 assists for 219 points in
163 career games.
"The coaching staff was tremendous," said Ward. "Gino Gasparini, Dean Blais, Cary Eades,
Jim Scanlan all had a huge impact on me as a player and as a person.
The support system within the community was amazing for any young man a
long way from home.
"Many of those people are still some of my best friends."
surprising that Ward still follows the current Sioux hockey team
considering two of his closest friends currently coach the team [Head
coach Dave Hakstol and assistant coach Dane Jackson]. He tries to make it back at least once a year to UND for an alumni event and at least once a year.
Ward believes that his time spent on the ice for the Sioux contributed to his transition to the NHL.
hockey program, in my opinion, has always been the very best at
preparing players for the next level. Gino Gasparini knew what it took
to play at the NHL level and instilled a commitment and work ethic that
allowed us to be our best," he said.
He spent 10
years in the NHL and played 599 games between the Canucks, Kings, Maple
Leafs, Sabres, Bruins and the Rangers. In 1999, while playing for the
Buffalo Sabres, he reached the Stanly Cup Finals. He spent the most time
with the Sabres and says that was his favorite team to play for because
of the team. And he learned most about being pro from Pat Quinn in
Since his NHL
days, Ward has become the owner and vice-president of the renowned
Okanagan Hockey School and Academy in Kelowna, British Columbia. The
hockey academy was established in 1963 and focuses on providing a
leading edge, top quality instruction hockey camp for players ages seven
to 16 years old.
"It means a
lot in the sense that we took a lot of pride in wearing the Sioux jersey
and to be recognized for your personal contributions to such a great
institution is very humbling," Ward said about his induction into the
2009 Hall of Fame.
Ward currently lives in Kelowana with his wife and two children.