Mikita, Stan

Mikita, Stan, 1940–2018, Canadian hockey player, b. Sokolče, Czechoslovakia (a former village whose site is now in Slovakia), as Stanislav Gvoth [key]. Adopted by relatives in Ontario, Canada, Mikita played bantam and junior hockey before he became a center with the NHL's Chicago Black Hawks in 1958. He spent his entire career with the team, helping them win the Stanley Cup in 1961. Mikita led the NHL in scoring four times and was league MVP twice, and also designed his own helmet and popularized the curved hockey stick, which added speed and unpredictability to shots. He retired in 1980 with 541 goals and 926 assists; he was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1983.

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