A Conversation with Wayne Gretzky
With warmth and humor, legendary hockey star Wayne Gretzky candidly shares his personal stories of success and failure throughout his incomparable career to inspire audiences to pursue greatness in their own lives no matter their passion. Through determination and hard work, Gretzky believes anyone can unlock their full potential and offers his insight on the mindset for attaining your goals: - blazing your own trail, dealing with change, fostering creativity and committing to achieving excellence.
Getting Into the Hall of Fame: What it Takes
As one of the greatest hockey players of all time, Gretzky knows what it takes to be in the hall of fame for your craft. His lessons of hard work, determination, flexibility, innovation, and letting go of fear are invaluable to any audience looking to improve their game.
Hocky icon Wayne Gretzky offers keen insights about playing to your strengths in business and in life
Legendary hockey WAYNE GRETZKY – known as The Great One – has spent decades dominating on and off the ice, making an impact in philanthropy and business and cementing his legacy as a sportsman. Widely considered the greatest hockey player of all time, Gretzky’s impact on the popularity of the game resounds, as evidenced by the sale of his coveted final Edmonton Oilers jersey for a record $1.452M – the most ever paid for a hockey jersey. And a recent op-ed in The LA Times charged that – despite comparisons to contemporary players – he is “the man who remains, now and ever, the Greatest One.” The celebrated player is lending his expertise and entertaining commentary to TNT’s hockey broadcasts as a lead studio analyst, and shares his mind-blowing stories of some of the greatest moments in sports history with authenticity and levity.
In an illuminating interview for CBS News, Gretzky shared the secret behind his success: "Well, I played to my strength," Gretzky said. "My strength was my mind. I was always the smallest guy, right? So, I had to figure out a way to be able to be more successful than those bigger, stronger, faster guys." It’s precisely this commitment to strategy that Gretzky has leveraged in numerous business endeavors, from restaurants to his winery, and more recent ventures like his sportswear line Greatness Wins and a major partnership with EBay as the featured athlete in their first collection of NFTs. The Great One also shared the greatest lesson he learned from his late father, “to do everything – no matter how inconsequential – as if it were the Stanley Cup playoffs.”
If your group is looking to make an impact and spark motivation at your next event, hockey legend Wayne Gretzky offers inspiring insights about finding your passion, strategizing your strengths, and letting go of fear to achieve greatness.
Wayne Gretzky: Speaker Spotlight
Legendary hockey star WAYNE GRETZKY engages audiences with intriguing stories of his successful career on the ice, his time as the former head coach for the Phoenix Coyotes, the lead analyst for TNT's hockey broadcasts, and the Founder of the Wayne Gretzky Foundation. Nicknamed "The Great One," Gretzky is widely considered to be the greatest hockey player of all-time, and shares with audiences how he got to that top tier place in hockey fame. His lessons of determination, hard work, and using an athlete’s mindset to accomplish anything you set your mind to, on or off the field, are invaluable nuggets of wisdom and can be applied to help nearly any audience find their greatness. A warm speaker who keeps listeners lighthearted and laughing, Gretzky helps audiences ditch their fears in the pursuit of excellence. His advice is always in demand, and was asked to teach audiences his Athlete Mindset on MasterClass, a popular online education platform. Of his Athlete Mindset MasterClass talks, Gretzky shares, "You don't have to be an athlete to make an athlete's mindset work for you...understanding that believing in yourself is three-quarters of the battle, and once you combine passion with putting in the work and time, there's nothing stopping you from achieving any goal you set out to accomplish."
Wayne Gretzky, nicknamed "The Great One," is widely considered to be the greatest hockey player of all-time. Following his successful career on the ice, Gretzky has stayed close to the game he loves. He is the lead studio analyst for TNT's hockey broadcasts, was Head Coach and EVP of the Phoenix Coyotes from 2005 to 2009, named the Vice Chairman of the Edmonton Oilers from 2016-2021 and was the official ambassador for the NHL’s Centennial Celebration in 2017.
Gretzky retired as a player on April 16, 1999, after 20 seasons in which he dominated the National Hockey League unlike any player in history. Gretzky helped win four Stanley Cup Championships and three Canada Cup tournament titles during his illustrious career. He became the NHL's all-time leading goal, assist, and point producer for both regular season and playoffs. Gretzky won 10 Art Ross Trophies as the NHL's leading scorer, nine Hart Trophies as the League's MVP, and two Conn Smythe Trophies as playoff MVP. He earned five Lady Byng Trophies as the NHL's most gentlemanly player and made 18 consecutive All-Star Game appearances, securing three All-Star MVP Awards. Gretzky is an eight-time First All-Star Team member and seven-time Second All-Star Team member. He holds virtually every offensive record in the NHL and his tireless support of the game has contributed significantly to the popularity it enjoys today.
Upon his retirement, Gretzky held or shared 61 NHL records. Following his final game, the NHL bestowed on Gretzky the unique distinction of being the only player in the history of the NHL to have his jersey number retired by all member clubs. "No. 99" was formally retired at the 2000 NHL All-Star Game in Toronto and will never again be worn by an NHL player.
On November 22, 1999, seven months after his retirement, Gretzky was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto, Canada, becoming the tenth and final player in Hockey Hall of Fame history to have the mandatory three-year waiting period for enshrinement waived by the Hall's board of directors.
In 2002, Gretzky served in a managerial role with Team Canada as the Executive Director of Team Canada's Olympic Hockey Team. Under Gretzky's leadership, Team Canada persevered to win the Gold Medal. Gretzky served in the same capacity with Team Canada for the 2004 World Cup of Hockey.
The Wayne Gretzky Foundation is dedicated to helping disadvantaged youngsters throughout North America participate in hockey. Gretzky also gives his time to countless other charitable endeavors. He serves as Honorary Chairman of Ronald McDonald Children’s Charities in Canada, and is an Athlete Ambassador and Honorary Member of the Board of Trustees of Right to Play, an athlete driven humanitarian organization that uses sports to enhance child development in some of the most disadvantaged communities in the world. Gretzky also is a participant in “Hands That Shape Humanity”, a project for the Desmond Tutu Peace Centre.