Hockey Player 13 Seasons
NHL All Star 1993
Captain New York Rangers 3˝ seasons
Assistant Captain San Jose Sharks 2 seasons
Born in Peace River Alberta, Kelly Kisio moved with his
family to Wetaskiwin in 1962 when he was three years old.
Kelly grew up playing all sports; hockey, fastball,
volleyball, basketball and football. He competed through
all age levels in the Wetaskiwin Minor Hockey and Minor
Fastball systems. Kelly’s fastball teams won several
championships and one year Kelly won the Batting Title.
However, even as a youngster, Kelly’s main aspiration was to
become a professional hockey player and play in the NHL. He
practiced and trained to attain this goal.
Desire, Quick Shot and Good
Led to Many Game Winning Goals
Kelly was an inspiration to his teammates and his display of
heart and desire plus a quick shot and good skating led to
many game winning goals. Kelly’s innate ability and value
to teams was apparent to Wetaskiwin coaches and when he was
at the bantam level he played part of a season with the
midget Kings and in his second year as a midget was on loan
to the juveniles. According to a 1980 Wetaskiwin Times
article, Kelly was a coach’s hockey player, he always
Rookie of the Year
At age 17 Kelly continued pursuing his hockey career and
played Junior Hockey for two years with the Red Deer
Rustlers where he had 54 goals and 101 points the first year
(1976-77) and was named an All Star for scoring 74 goals and
142 points in his final year (1977-78). The next two years
(1978-79, 1979-80), Kelly starred with the Calgary Wranglers
of the WHL where he led his
team in scoring and reached consecutive 60 goal seasons.
He was named WHL Rookie of the
Year for 1978-79. Also, in his rookie year, in recognition
of his leadership qualities Kelly was appointed captain of
Kelly entered pro hockey as a free agent in 1980-81 and was
an effective player with the Adirondack Red Wings of the AHL
and the IHL’s Kalamazoo Wings. In 1981-82 Kelly scored 62
goals for the CHL Dallas Black Hawks. In 1982-83 Kelly
headed overseas to play for the HC Davos Club in Switzerland
and scored 49 times in 40 matches.
Voted by the Fans as a “New York Ranger Fan
The Detroit Red Wings signed
Kelly as a free agent on March 2, 1983. Kelly recorded
three straight 60 point seasons (1982-86) in Detroit before
he was traded
to the New York Rangers. In his five years in New York
(1986-91) Kelly recorded five straight 20 goal seasons and
averaged nearly 70 points per season. As well, Kelly’s
leadership abilities were again recognized as he served as
the team’s well respected captain for three and a half
seasons. Kelly was voted by the fans as a “New York
Ranger Fan Favourite”.
new challenge awaited the veteran pivot in 1991-92 when
Kelly ended up as one of the team leaders on the expansion
San Jose Sharks. That year Kelly battled injuries and
played only 48 games but still managed 37 points. The next
year Kelly led his team in scoring and tied a career high in
goals (26) and points (78). He was voted by the media as
“Sharks Player of the Year” and represented the Sharks in
the 1993 All Star Game in Montreal. Both seasons Kelly
served as assistant captain of the Sharks.
for Hockey Sense and Unselfish Attitude
13 Years Career - 658 Points in 761 Games
In 1993 Kelly returned to Alberta when he signed as a free
agent with the Calgary Flames. He contributed defensive
play and leadership to the powerful Flames before retiring
in 1995. During his 13 year NHL career, Kelly played a
total of 761 games and he posted 658 points on 229 goals and
429 assists. Kelly’s play combined speed, great hockey
sense and an unselfish attitude; he was always much more
than a one-dimensional player. It was versatility that made
Kelly the competitor he was.
After retiring from playing, Kelly joined the Calgary Flames
scouting staff until the 1998–99 season when he was named
General Manager of the Calgary Hitmen Junior Hockey Club,
who are owned by the Flames. With Kisio as GM, the Hitmen
have made the playoffs every year, won two central division
titles, and won the Western Hockey League title in 1999.
During the 2003-04 and 2008-09 seasons Kelly was awarded the
Lloyd Saunders Memorial Trophy give to the WHL’s Top
Executive. He was runner-up for this award in 2007-08.
Kelly Kisio has been an inspiration and role model to the
young people of Wetaskiwin. Each year at Queen Elizabeth
Junior High School, the top male and female athlete are
awarded the “Kelly Kisio” trophy. We salute his
achievements and exemplary hockey career by inducting Kelly
into the Wetaskiwin and County Sports Hall of Fame.