March 25, 1949 |
Ottawa, ON, CAN
|Height||5 ft 11 in (180 cm)|
|Weight||188 lb (85 kg; 13 st 6 lb)|
|Played for||Los Angeles Kings
New York Islanders
Minnesota North Stars
Jean Rene Potvin (born March 25, 1949) is a Canadian retired professional ice hockey defenceman who played in the National Hockey League (NHL) for the Los Angeles Kings, Philadelphia Flyers, New York Islanders, Cleveland Barons and Minnesota North Stars.
During his 11-year career, Potvin scored 63 goals and 224 assists in 613 career NHL games. He also played on the New York Islanders’ first two Stanley Cup-winning teams, in 1980 and 1981.
In the 1975-1976 season, he was the second highest-scoring defenseman in the NHL with 72 points (17 goals and 55 assists). The only other defenseman to score more points that season was his brother Denis with 98 points (31 goals and 67 assists).
On January 22, 1976, in a game against the Detroit Red Wings at the Nassau Coliseum, Potvin scored three goals (two on the Power Play) and also added an assist while his brother Denis had two goals and two assists of his own. The Islanders have now played over 3,300 regular seasons in their history and only once has a defenseman not named "Denis Potvin" scored a hat trick. Potvin's final two goals came 45 seconds apart as he became the only defenseman in Islander history to ever score three goals in a period at the Coliseum. It was also the first time since 1947 that brothers had combined for at least five goals in an NHL game, and the first time in NHL history that it had been done by two defensemen.
Potvin was involved in the last Christmas Day fight in NHL history. Potvin, who played for the Los Angeles Kings at the time, fought Ernie Hicke, then with the California Golden Seals on 25 December 1971. The players were later teammates with the NY Islanders. The Kings were owned by Jack Kent Cooke at the time and the Seals were owned by Charlie O. Finley, whose General Manager was a young Bill Torrey.
Potvin began his professional hockey career in December 1969 with the Springfield Kings in the American Hockey League. The next season in 1970-1971, he led all defensemen on the team in scoring as he played on the Springfield Kings’ Calder Cup-winning team with teammates Butch Goring and Billy Smith. During that playoff season, Potvin scored two goals and 10 assists for 12 points in 12 games. Ten years later, Goring, Smith, and Potvin would play together again on the first two New York Islanders' Stanley Cup-winning teams, in 1980 and 1981.
His brother, Hockey Hall of Famer Denis Potvin, was a teammate of Potvin's with the New York Islanders for six years, including the first two Stanley Cup years.
Potvin worked on Islander radio broadcasts both late in his playing career and following his retirement, when he was paired mainly with Barry Landers. Potvin won the Stanley Cup in 1980 with New York Islanders in spite of spending the entire playoff run in the announcer's booth serving as color commentator with radio play-by-play man Bob Lawrence. In 1981 he played only 18 games for the Islanders. His name was still engraved on the Cup in 1981, even though he did not qualify. Again, he spent the playoffs serving as color commentator, this time with Barry Landers.
When his playing career ended after the 1981 season, Potvin worked as the radio color commentator and analyst for the New York Islanders’ broadcasts for the next eight years. During that time, he also worked as a Registered Representative for retail investment management firm Josephthal & Co., where he developed an impressive book of business.
Wall Street career
Potvin was recruited by Donaldson, Lufkin and Jenrette as an institutional salesman in 1990. Over the course of the next 23 years, he worked for quality institutional firms including First Albany, Oppenheimer & Co., and Morgan Keegan & Co. In July 2012, he decided to leave Wall Street and pursue other interests.
In January 2014, Potvin accepted a position with Catholic Charities of Brooklyn and Queens, and is now a Senior Vice President for Giving. He enjoys raising money for the needy and less fortunate people of Brooklyn and Queens, the largest Catholic Charities dioceses in the US.
Potvin and his wife Lorraine reside on Long Island and are the parents of three children – Kim, Leslie, and Justin. They have one grandchild.
Actively involved with different charities over the years, Potvin was also on the Board of Directors of the Boys Scouts of America in Nassau County for over a decade.
- Career statistics and player information from NHL.com, or Hockey-Reference.com, or Legends of Hockey, or The Internet Hockey Database
- Picture of Jean Potvin's name on the 1980 Stanley Cup plaque