Willie Mitchell
POSITION: Defenseman
HEIGHT: 6' 3"
BIRTHDATE: 04/23/1977
DRAFTED: NJD: 1996-199 overall

2009-10: Set career high in goals…Third on Vancouver with 22:36 TOI/game (eighth straight season averaging 20-plus minutes)…Led NHL with 4:04 short-handed TOI/game…Fourth on Vancouver with 79 blocked shots…Appeared in Vancouver’s first 48 games and missed final 34 games (plus all of playoffs) due to an upper-body injury…Played in 155 consecutive games before injury (Feb. 14, 2008 to Jan. 16, 2010)…Was plus-13…Accumulated positive plus-minus for seventh straight season (plus-93 in that span)…Earned 100th NHL assist Jan. 5, 2010 vs. Columbus…Served as an alternate captain for second straight year.

2008-09: Selected as Vancouver’s Best Defenseman for second consecutive year…Career highs in points, assists, games played and with a plus-29…First time in career he’s played all 82 regular season games…First on Vancouver in plus-minus (tied for ninth in NHL overall, fourth among defensemen)…Second on Vancouver with 22:54 TOI/game, led club (sixth in NHL) with 4:15 short-handed TOI/game…Second on club with 125 blocked shots…Earned 100th NHL point Jan. 18, 2009 vs. Columbus…Played in 500th NHL game Jan. 10, 2009 vs. San Jose…Career high three points and two goals (2-1=3) Jan. 9, 2009 vs. St. Louis…Career high 32:16 TOI Jan. 2, 2009 at Atlanta (fifth time with 30-plus minutes in game)…Named an alternate captain to begin season…PLAYOFFS: Two assists and 22 penalty minutes in 10 games, helping the Canucks advance to Western Conference Semifinals.

2007-08: Selected as Vancouver’s Best Defenseman…Fourth on Vancouver with career high 23:11 TOI/game, led club (tied for seventh in NHL) with 4:24 short-handed TOI/game...Led club with 109 blocked shots…30:19 TOI March 15, 2008 at Dallas and 30:46 TOI March 21, 2008 vs. Minnesota…Played in 400th NHL game Nov. 9, 2007 vs. Colorado…Tied career high with plus-4 Oct. 12, 2007 at Edmonton (fourth time was plus-4 in game).

2006-07: Third on Vancouver with 22:12 TOI/game, led club (third in NHL) with 4:47 short-handed TOI/game…Led club with 121 blocked shots…30:12 TOI Feb. 25, 2007 at Dallas…PLAYOFFS: One assist and 12 penalty minutes in 12 games, helping the Canucks advance to Western Conference Semifinals.

2005-06: Served as Minnesota’s team captain in December 2005…Traded to Dallas March 9, 2006…Career high 113 penalty minutes (combined with both clubs)…Led Minnesota in plus-minus, second with 20:52 TOI/game, led club with 4:36 short-handed TOI/game, third with 101 blocked shots…Third on Dallas with 20:45 TOI/game, second with 4:12 short-handed TOI/game…Played in 300th NHL game Feb. 10, 2006 at Edmonton…Tied career high with plus-4 Oct. 19, 2005 vs. San Jose…PLAYOFFS: Zero points and two penalty minutes in five games with Dallas.

2003-04: Second on Minnesota with 22:35 TOI/game, led club with 2:48 short-handed TOI/game…Tied club lead with plus-12…Tied career high with plus-4 Jan. 21, 2004 vs. Chicago…Played in 200th NHL game Jan. 2, 2004 vs. Edmonton…31:26 TOI Dec. 17, 2003 at Colorado.

2002-03: Fourth on Minnesota with 21:28 TOI/game, second with 2:57 short-handed TOI/game…Third on club with plus-13…PLAYOFFS: Four points (1-3=4) and 14 penalty minutes in 18 games, helping the Wild advance to Western Conference Finals…Tied for first on Minnesota with plus-5.

2001-02: Third on Minnesota with 21:25 TOI/game, fourth with 3:01 short-handed TOI/game...Third among Minnesota defensemen in points and assists…Played in 100th NHL game April 8, 2002 vs. San Jose.

2000-01: Traded to Minnesota from New Jersey March 4, 2001…Points and assists (0-5=5) in career high four straight games (April 2 to April 8, 2001)…Career high plus-4 Oct. 6, 2000 vs. Montreal.

1999-00: Spent majority of season with Albany (AHL), recording 19 points (5-14=19) and 71 points in 63 games…Made NHL debut March 25, 2000 at Toronto.

TRANSACTIONS: Selected by New Jersey in the eighth round (199th overall) in the 1996 NHL Entry Draft…Traded to Minnesota by New Jersey for Sean O’Donnell on March 4, 2001…Traded to Dallas by Minnesota with a second-round selection in the 2007 NHL Entry Draft (Nico Saccheti) for Martin Skoula and Shawn Belle on March 9, 2006…Signed as a free agent by Vancouver on July 1, 2006.

Clarkson University, NCAA…Won ECAC Championship, named Playoff MVP, ECAC First-Team All-Star and NCAA East Second-Team All-American in 1998-99…ECAC Co-Rookie of the Year, named ECAC Second-Team All-Star and to ECAC All-Rookie Team in 1997-98.

INTERNATIONAL PLAY: Earned gold medal for Team Canada at 2004 World Championships (9GP, 0-0=0).

PERSONAL: Nickname: Pickle, Mitchy…Off-season home: British Columbia…Wife: Megan…Pets: dog (Pinot)…Favorite movie: Planet Earth…Favorite TV show: Bloomberg TV…Favorite band: Coldplay…Favorite NHL city, other than Los Angeles: New York City, Vancouver…Favorite book: Unconventional Success…Favorite sport other than hockey: any type of fishing…Favorite hockey moment: first NHL game, playing in Conference Finals in 2003…Favorite pro athlete: “GFC” (UFC)…Favorite hockey player growing up: Cam Neely, Jeremy Roenick…Favorite road arena: Xcel Energy Center, Madison Square Garden…Favorite food: wild salmon…Favorite website, other than LAKings.com: stockhouse.com…Favorite vacation spot: Tofino, Kauai…Wears jersey number because: he’s 33, 3+3=6 and 6 means good health, his friend in MLB (Justin Morneau) wears 33…Charities: supports BC Children’s Hospital, Canucks Autism Network, Save Our Salmon (serves on board), David Suzuki Foundation…Helps the environment by recycling, driving a Prius, using a Sigg…If not a hockey player he would be: spending more time snowboarding, surfing, traveling, protecting the oceans, maybe have his own TV show.