Danielle Goyette (CAN)

Born: St-Nazaire, Quebec, Canada, January 30, 1966

In many respects Danielle Goyette was the Gordie Howe of women’s hockey. A superstar talent on offence, she was a gifted scorer who continued to produce with Howe’s consistency. Indeed, she had more points in her final Women’s World Championship in 2007 at age 41 (11) than she did in her first some 15 years earlier as a 26-year-old (10).

And, like Howe, it all began far from the bright lights of a big city and great crowds. St-Nazaire, located a distant three-hour drive from Quebec City, was a town of only 800 when Goyette was growing up, but like any kid she started skating around age four.

In all, Goyette played in three Olympics and nine IIHF Women’s World Championships, winning gold every time with two exceptions, the ’98 Olympics and 2005 Worlds. In 61 games at the highest level she averaged a point and a half a game and was adept as both a scorer and passer. She led all players in Nagano in 1998 with eight goals and was the scoring leader at the 1992 Women’s Worlds with 10 points. She had as many points in Salt Lake in 2002 to tie for the overall lead.

By the time Goyette had played her final games for Canada in 2007 at age 41, she was second all-time with 15 goals at the Olympics and fourth all-time with 68 points at the Women’s Worlds and third all-time with 37 goals.

One of eight children, Danielle was an excellent tennis player and fastball player, but she focused her ambitions on hockey, pretending to play for her beloved Montreal Canadiens while skating outdoors in the cold winters. Goyette spoke virtually no English when she made the national team in 1991, but within five years she had relocated to Calgary to learn the language and concentrate full-time on hockey, hoping to play for Canada at the inaugural event in Nagano in 1998.

Goyette was the flag-bearer for Canada at the opening ceremonies of the 2006 Games in Turin and went on to become head coach at the University of Calgary. She recruited former teammate Hayley Wickenheiser and led the Dinos to a national championship in 2012, a first for that university.

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