Canada is home to some of the most influential sports figures in the world. The country has participated in various international games and won several leagues, including the Stanley Cup. Canada has also hosted many Olympic Games, moving it to the top.
With some of the world’s most powerful sports figures, it’s no surprise that Canada is one of the leading countries in sports activities. In this guide, we’ll look at some of the most influential Canadians in the sports sector. Keep reading to learn more.
Most Powerful Canadians in Sports
By participating and winning in various sports, Canada created impressions in many people’s minds. Today, we’ll look at some of the most influential people who have contributed successfully to Canada’s outstanding sports performance.
Let’s get started.
1. Eugene Melnyk
Eugene Melnyk, the owner and governor of Ottawa Senators, has contributed to Canada’s pride in sports. He has mentored a highly competent team that has won the Stanley Cup severally. His team is one of the top-ranked in Canadian sports.
Besides being the chairman and governor of Ottawa Senators, Eugene Melnyk is also renowned for his philanthropy and business success. He is one of Barbados’s wealthiest residents, with an estimated net worth of over $1.21 billion.
2. Terry Fox
Terry Fox is a Canadian athlete and humanitarian born in 1958. His most significant achievement was when he ran across Canada all by himself. As a cancer research activist, he did that to get funds for the research of cancer.
In his high school days, Fox was a distance runner and a basketballer. In 1977, he was diagnosed with cancer, and his right leg got amputated. However, that didn’t stop him from participating in sports. He played Wheelchair Basketball in Vancouver and won the national championship three times.
He began the Marathon of Hope in 1980, running with an artificial leg, to get money for cancer research. He is the youngest person named a companion of the order of Canada. In 1980, he was the nation’s top sportsman and won the Lou Marsh Award.
Fox became Canada’s Newsmaker of the year 1980 and 1981. The country has many buildings, roads, and statutes named after him in his honor.
3. Wayne Gretzky
Born in 1961 in Canada, Wayne is the only one to have his number retired league-wide. He is a former professional player of the Ice Hockey team and former head coach. He played in the NHL for four terms, from 1979 to 1999, playing 20 seasons.
Wayne’s nickname is “The Great One.” Many sportswriters and players in Canada consider him the greatest hockey player. He is the first NHL player to score 200 points in one season, and he did it four times. Wayne has also tallied over 100 points in 16 seasons.
At retirement from NHL in 1999, he had 61 NHL records. He received an honor from NHL when retiring his jersey number league-wide. He was on the list of the six players voted to the International Ice Hockey Federation for the Centennial All-Star Team.
Wayne was the executive director for the Canadian national men’s hockey team. By the time of his leadership, the team won a gold medal in the 2002 Winter Olympics. His achievements have made Canada known for sports.
4. Cindy Klassen
This 41-year-old Canadian set a record when she won five medals at one Olympic game. After winning the 3,000 meters marathon, she was the world record holder until 2019, when Martina broke her record. She has also been a champion in the 1,500 meters and 5,000 meters.
Cindy leads a skating team, which has an all-time world ranking for speed. She brought pride back to Canada when she won the overall title at the World Speed Skating Championship after 27 years.
In 2006, Cindy was Canada’s best athlete of the year and won the Lou Marsh Trophy. Due to her outstanding speed skating performance in 2006, Cindy won the Oscar Mathisen Award.
She was then given the title of the Female Athlete of the year in 2007. Despite the many challenges and injuries in the sporting world, this champ was at the team that first won gold in world championships in 2011.
5. Christine Sinclair
At 37, this Canadian soccer player had already attained 186 goals. She now plays for Portland Thorns FC. But before then, she played for Western New York Flash and FC Gold Pride. Christine has won the CONCACAF champion and has become the Canada Soccer player of the year 14 times.
During the world cup edition, she was named the most capped international footballer. She ranks at the second position of the five footballers to score at world cup editions.
This champ has played five times in FIFA women’s world cup and taken part in three Olympic tournaments. Christine has been shortlisted seven times for the ‘player of the year’ in FIFA World Player and won championships with three professional teams.
She won the Lou Marsh Trophy in 2012 as Canada’s athlete of the year. She also won Canada’s female athlete of the year award, the Bobbie Rosenfeld Award. The governor-general appointed her as the Officer of the Order of Canada in 2017 to honor her achievements.
6. Mike Weir
Mike was born in 1960, in Canada, and is a world-known Canadian in sports for being the only Canadian to win a golf title. He plays on the PGA tour, and he was in the top 10 of the Official World Golf Ranking for over two years.
Mike is left-handed. He won the Masters Tournament in 2003, which made him the first and only Canadian to win a major. He first won the PGA Tour in 1999, in the Air Canada Championship, held in Columbia. This brought so much pride to Canada because they had not won the cup for over 45years.
In 2003, Mike won two tournaments: Bob Hope Chrysler Classic and the other in Riviera Country Club at the Nissan Open. The awards he won during the US open moved him to position three in the Official World Golf Ranking.
He was the athlete of the year in 2003, which made him win the Lou Marsh Trophy. He has carried home many trophies and titles, making Canada famous in many cities. In 2016, he became one of the TNT broadcast team of the 2016 championship.
7. Hayley Wickenheiser
Hayley is known for getting Olympic gold medals four consecutive times. She was born in 1978 in Canada and is a former player of the Canadian Ice Hockey team. Currently, she is the assistant director of Player Development for the Toronto Maple Leaf.
Hayley Wickenheiser has played for Ice hockey team for over 23 years and was the first woman to play full-time professional hockey. Hayley retired at Ice hockey team, having scored over 168 goals and 211 assists in 276 games.
Out of the four times that Hayley represented Canada at the Winter Olympics, she brought home four gold medals and one silver. She has carried the tournament MVP title twice.
Hayley broke the record by getting the most gold medals than any other Canadian Olympian, tying with two of her playmates, Caroline and Jayna Hefford.
She holds the title of the greatest female ice-hockey player of all time. In 2014, Hayley got elected to the International Olympic Committee’s Athletes’ Commission.
8. Ian Millar
Ian Miller is the champion for the most Olympic Games appearances. Canadians have nicknamed him “Captain Canada.” He had his first Olympic performance in Munich in 1972, where he represented Canada in every game she was to play.
Ian won his first Olympic medal at Beijing in 2008, which was a silver medal. He played until the age of 65, where he attended his last game in London in 2012. He has a world record of being the first equestrian to win world cup finals using the same horse.
Athletes get a great chance to do what they love, as passion, and to earn a living. Many people look up to them, and it feels good to see them put the country on top. When they win, it benefits both them and their country.