Paul Kariya is a Canadian left winger on the St. Louis Blues.
Kariya was once one of the most highly regarded players in the NHL, with some even going as far as to call him the greatest talent since Wayne Gretzky. He won the Hobey Baker Award as a college freshman at the University of Maine, as he helped Maine win the NCAA title in 1992-93. He was drafted 4th overall by the Anaheim Mighty Ducks. Kariya had the best season of his career in 1995-96, scoring 108 points. He would team up with Finnish superstar Teemu Selanne and star center Steve Rucchin to lead the young Ducks to the playoffs on a number of occasions. In 2003, he led them to the Stanley Cup Finals where they would eventually lose to the New Jersey Devils. In Game 6, he was leveled by a hit from Scott Stevens. He was knocked out of the game, and with his history of concussions, it was unclear when he would return. He made it back, however, in time for overtime, and scored the game winning goal.
After a disagreement with Anaheim GM Brian Murray, Kariya and Selanne both signed with the Colorado Avalanche, where he spent one season. After the lockout, Kariay signed with the Nashville Predators, where he put up his best season in five years, notching 85 points. Kariya signed with St. Louis in 2007, and recorded his 900th career point during the 2007-08 season.
Kariya has represented Team Canada on a number of occasions. He won a silver medal at the 1994 Winter Olympics, and a gold medal at the 2002 Salt Lake City Games. He won a gold medal at the 1993 World Junior Championships, and played at the 1992 World Junior Championships, the 1993 World Tournament, and 1996 World Championships.
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