Kelly Guard

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Kelly Guard
Born (1983-06-10) June 10, 1983 (age 32)
Prince Albert, SK, CAN
Height 6 ft 0 in (183 cm)
Weight 186 lb (84 kg; 13 st 4 lb)
Position Goaltender
Caught Left
Played for Charlotte Checkers
Binghamton Senators
Junost Minsk
China Sharks
Vienna Capitals
HC Pustertal-Val Pusteria
NHL Draft Undrafted
Playing career 2004–2008

Kelly Guard (born June 10, 1983 in Prince Albert, Saskatchewan) is a retired Canadian professional ice hockey goaltender. He last played for HC Pustertal-Val Pusteria in Italy's Serie A. He helped lead the Kelowna Rockets of the Western Hockey League (WHL) to a Memorial Cup championship in 2004.

Playing career[edit]

Guard spent his entire junior career with the WHL's Kelowna Rockets. In 2002–03, his first of two seasons with the team, he led the Rockets to a WHL Championship and a berth in the Memorial Cup tournament in Quebec City. The Rockets lost 2–1 to the Hull Olympiques in the semi-final. Guard had another stellar season with the Rockets in 2003–04, posting 44 wins in 62 games. Although Kelowna lost in the third round of the WHL playoffs that season, the city was chosen to host the 2004 Memorial Cup and as such the Rockets received an automatic berth in the tournament. Guard helped lead the team to the franchise's first Memorial Cup Championship as they defeated the Gatineau Olympiques 2–1 in the final. For his efforts, Guard was awarded both the Hap Emms Memorial Trophy and the Stafford Smythe Memorial Trophy as the Memorial Cup's top goaltender and most valuable player, respectively. He was also named to the tournament's First All-Star Team, and to the WHL's First All-Star Team for that season. In all, Guard posted an 83-24 record over his two seasons with Kelowna.

Guard was never selected in the NHL Entry Draft but was signed to a professional contract by the National Hockey League's Ottawa Senators in 2004. He made his professional debut during the 2004–05 season playing for Ottawa's East Coast Hockey League affiliate, the Charlotte Checkers. He spent the following two seasons with Ottawa's top minor league affiliate, the Binghamton Senators of the American Hockey League. He struggled with the team, posting a 36-44-4 record.

The Senators opted not to offer Guard a new contract after the 2006-07 season and the goaltender became a free agent. In November 2007, Guard signed with the China Sharks of Asia League Ice Hockey, though his stint with the team was brief. He had similarly brief stints with the Vienna Capitals of Erste Bank Eishockey Liga and Junost Minsk of the Belarusian Extraleague before signing with Serie A's HC Pustertal-Val Pusteria.

After sustaining a groin injury in an October 2008 match, Guard's contract with Pustertal-Val Pusteria was terminated by mutual consent. Although he said that "the city, the environment and the teammates were outstanding," Guard was disappointed with the level of play in Serie A and, already contemplating retirement, the injury helped make his decision final. In November 2008 Guard announced his retirement from professional hockey.[1]

Career statistics[edit]

Regular season[edit]

   
Season Team League GP W L T MIN GA SO GAA SV%
2002–03 Kelowna Rockets WHL 53 39 10 3 3018 97 6 1.93 .911
2003–04 Kelowna Rockets WHL 62 44 14 4 3652 95 13 1.56 .925
2004–05 Charlotte Checkers ECHL 26 12 11 2 1453 74 0 3.06 .901
2005–06 Binghamton Senators AHL 51 25 20 1 2709 139 5 3.08 .908
2006–07 Binghamton Senators AHL 42 11 24 3 2330 127 2 3.42 .895
2007–08 China Sharks ALH 2 1 1 0 120 6 0 3.00
AHL totals 93 36 44 4 5039 266 7 3.17 .902
WHL totals 115 83 24 7 6670 192 19 1.73 .915

Playoffs[edit]

   
Season Team League GP W L MIN GA SO GAA SV%
2002–03 Kelowna Rockets WHL 19 16 3 1233 36 4 1.75 .917
2003–04 Kelowna Rockets WHL 17 11 6 1042 31 1 1.78 .919
2004–05 Charlotte Checkers ECHL 2 0 0 40 1 0 1.52 .933
WHL totals 36 27 9 2275 67 5 1.77 .918

References[edit]

  1. ^ Doyle Potenteau (2008-11-04). "Kelly Guard injured, may hang up skates". Kelowna Daily Courier. Retrieved 2010-12-16. 

External links[edit]