Legends of Hockey -- NHL Player Search -- Player -- Dean Kennedy
Dean Kennedy was a solid positional defenceman who could play physically in his own end and join the rush on occasion. He played a fairly anonymous 717 NHL games for five teams between 1982 and 1995. Kennedy's greatest asset was his reputation as a hard hitter who always finished his check.

Kennedy played a year with the Weyburn Red Wings in the SJHL before joining the Brandon Wheat Kings in 1980. The promising backliner was drafted 39th overall by the Los Angeles Kings in 1981 before returning to junior. He began the 1982-83 season in Brandon then made the jump to the NHL and played 55 games as a rookie.

Like many other young defencemen, Kennedy was in need of improving his positional play to suit the fast pace of the pro game. He spent most of the next two seasons in the AHL with the New Haven Nighthawks where he gained confidence and improved his positional play.

Kennedy became a regular with the Kings from 1985-86 until he was traded to the New York Rangers in December 1988. After 16 games in the Big Apple he was traded back to L.A. In the off-season he was sent to the Buffalo Sabres for a draft choice and enjoyed one of his strongest years while helping his team register 98 points. The Sabres' point total dropped by 17 the next year and they decided to bring in some younger players on the blueline.

Kennedy was traded to the Winnipeg Jets prior to the 1991-92 season. Most of his first season with Winnipeg was lost to injuries. The next two years he played an important role in stabilizing the Winnipeg defensive corps but was placed on waivers after the owners' lockout in 1994-95. In January 1995 he was claimed by the Edmonton Oilers to add experience to the roster. He played 40 games then retired after the club narrowly missed the post-season.


REGULAR SEASON PLAYOFFS
Season Club League GP G A TP PIM +/- GP G A TP PIM
1979-80 Weyburn Red Wings SJHL 57 12 20 32 64
1979-80 Brandon Wheat Kings WHL 1 0 0 0 0
1980-81 Brandon Wheat Kings WHL 71 3 29 32 157 5 0 2 2 7
1981-82 Brandon Wheat Kings WHL 49 5 38 43 103
1982-83 Brandon Wheat Kings WHL 14 2 15 17 22
1982-83 Los Angeles Kings NHL 55 0 12 12 97 -17
1982-83 Saskatoon Blades WHL 4 0 3 3 0
1983-84 Los Angeles Kings NHL 37 1 5 6 50 -5
1983-84 New Haven Nighthawks AHL 26 1 7 8 23
1984-85 New Haven Nighthawks AHL 76 3 14 17 104
1985-86 Los Angeles Kings NHL 78 2 10 12 132 -10
1986-87 Los Angeles Kings NHL 66 6 14 20 91 +9 5 0 2 2 10
1987-88 Los Angeles Kings NHL 58 1 11 12 158 -22 4 0 1 1 10
1988-89 Los Angeles Kings NHL 25 2 7 9 23 +14
1988-89 New York Rangers NHL 16 0 1 1 40 -1
1988-89 Los Angeles Kings NHL 26 1 3 4 40 +4 11 0 2 2 8
1989-90 Buffalo Sabres NHL 80 2 12 14 53 -12 6 1 1 2 12
1990-91 Buffalo Sabres NHL 64 4 8 12 119 +5 2 0 1 1 17
1991-92 Winnipeg Jets NHL 18 2 4 6 21 +2 2 0 0 0 0
1992-93 Winnipeg Jets NHL 78 1 7 8 105 -3 6 0 0 0 2
1993-94 Winnipeg Jets NHL 76 2 8 10 164 -22
1994-95 Edmonton Oilers NHL 40 2 8 10 25 +2
NHL Totals 717 26 110 136 1118 36 1 7 8 59


Traded to NY Rangers by Los Angeles with Denis Larocque for Igor Liba, Michael Boyce, Todd Elik and future considerations, December 12, 1988. Traded to Los Angeles by NY Rangers for Los Angeles' 4th round pick (later traded to Minnesota - Minnesota selected Cal McGowan) in 1990 NHL Draft, February 3, 1989. Traded to Buffalo by Los Angeles for Buffalo's 4th round pick (Keith Redmond) in 1991 NHL Draft, October 4, 1989. Traded to Winnipeg by Buffalo with Darrin Shannon and Mike Hartman for Dave McLlwain, Gord Donnelly, Winnipeg's 5th round pick (Yuri Khmylev) in 1992 NHL Draft and future considerations, October 11, 1991.
Missed majority of 1991-92 due to knee injury vs. NY Islanders, November 20, 1991. Claimed by Edmonton from Winnipeg in NHL Waiver Draft, January 18, 1995.
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