In the twenty-eighth edition of “Legends of the Game”, we look at the life and career of Chris Gill.
From the Canadian Lacrosse Hall of Fame…
Chris Gill was born and raised in Coquitlam across the street from Smith Box. He played 16 years of minor, Intermediate and Junior lacrosse with the Adanacs. In Junior, this two-time All-Star netted 137 goals and 104 assists for 241 points in only 72 games. In one of the most memorable Minto Cup finals, he led the Adanacs to the 1992 final, only to lose in seven games to Six Nations.
Gill followed in his father’s footsteps and at 21 years of age joined the Vancouver Fire Department and was selected number one overall in the WLA draft (1994). In 13 WLA seasons with the Burrards and Salmonbellies, he scored 482 goals and 352 assists for 833 points in 282 regular season and playoff games.
Gill was a five-time WLA All-Star, a two time league leading scorer (1997 & 2000). the Three Star Award winner (1997) and WLA MVP (1998). He played in two Mann Cups (2008 & 2009) with the Salmonbellies. In 2001, Chris won a President’s Cup with the North Shore Indians. His 186 game pro career had stops in Baltimore, Ontario, Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton and Colorado where he scored 354 goals and 235 assists for 589 points. He won two NLL Championships with Toronto and Colorado. Gill also was a member of the Team Canada U19 team in the 1991 World Field Lacrosse Championships as well as a member of the Men’s National Field Lacrosse team (1998 & 2002).
He coached four seasons with the WLA Salmonbellies and is currently bench boss for the Maple Ridge Burrards. In the off season, Gill is a co-coach with the NLL Colorado Mammoth. Chris Gill will enter the Hall of Fame as a fourth generation inductee after great grandfather Robert “Les” Dickinson, grandfather Bill Dickinson and father Sohen Gill.
Maple Ridge Burrards assistant coach Chris Gill has been hired by Canucks Sports and Entertainment to coach the Vancouver National Lacrosse League team.
Gill already has experience as a coach in the NLL, and was a standout bench boss in the Western Lacrosse Association, winning coach of the year honours.
The Aquilini family announced that its sports and entertainment company had acquired the Vancouver Stealth this week, and would be moving the team to Vancouver.
Gill’s hiring was announced this week, as well, along with Port Coquitlam’s Dan Richardson as general manager.
“We are very pleased to add two local and well-respected figures in the lacrosse community to help shape our new franchise,” said Jeff Stipec, COO of Canucks Sports and Entertainment. “It was important for us to find hometown leaders who share our values and who could build this team for both next year and many seasons to come.
“Dan has nearly 20 years experience as a lacrosse executive, while Chris is a hall-of-famer with a decorated career as a player and he is a young coach on the rise,” added Stipec. “Dan and Chris have extensive experience, in-depth knowledge of our community and we believe they will thrive in their new positions.”
Gill, a Pitt Meadows resident, was an assistant coach with the Colorado Mammoth in the NLL, and said he will enjoy this homecoming.
“I’m excited for the opportunity to be coaching in my hometown,” said Gill. “The Aquilini family and CSE’s management have laid out an exciting vision for the future, which I am very passionate about being apart of. We have some work to do and I can’t wait to get started.”
The NLL runs during the winter and the WLA is a summer season, and although there is typically some overlap in their schedules, many coaches and players are part of both leagues.
Gill served in a coaching capacity with Colorado for four seasons, over the span of 2015-2018.
Prior to his coaching career, Gill played professionally with Baltimore, Ontario, Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton and Colorado, collecting 354 goals and 235 assists in 186 career games and was a part of three NLL championship teams (two with Toronto and one with Colorado).
He spent 13 years in the WLA with the Burrards and Salmonbellies, recording 833 points (482-352-833) in 282 regular season and playoff games. Gill led the league in scoring on two occasions (1997 and 2000), was named a WLA all-star five time, won the Three Star Award in 1997 and was WLA MVP in 1998.
Following his accomplished career he was named to the Canadian Lacrosse Hall of Fame, becoming a fourth generation inductee after great grandfather Robert “Les” Dickinson, grandfather Bill Dickinson and father Sohen Gill.
Chris was inducted into the Canadian Lacrosse Hall of Fame in 2015.