Sports & Gaming

Expect the Unexpected

Wayne Gretzky

Lesson time 07:52 min

Life is full of changes, so it’s important to be prepared for anything that is thrown your way. After winning four Stanley Cups in the span of five years in Edmonton, a Canadian city known for hockey, Wayne was traded to Los Angeles.

Students give MasterClass an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars

Topics include: Be a Difference Maker On and Off the Ice


[MUSIC PLAYING] WAYNE GRETZKY: Surprises in life are always part of being a professional athlete. And it doesn't matter who you are. Sometimes you're surprised to a point where you can't even believe what is transpiring. And you're almost in sort of disbelief. And for me, in 1979, walking into the locker room and Glen Sather telling me, one day we're going to be in the NHL and one day you're going to be the captain of this team and one day we're going to win the Stanley Cup. I really didn't anticipate for all that to happen within a five-year period, and for that matter, happen four times. [CROWD CHEERING] So from the hockey world, life was pretty exciting, and I don't think we could have been in a better position than we were with the success of the organization and how great the city has rallied around the hockey club. During that time, obviously, you start maturing and growing older and I was at an age then, to move forward in my lifetime and get married and have kids, which is a progression in life itself. [MUSIC PLAYING, CHEERING] What I didn't anticipate was winning the fourth championship in five years and being traded. - And it's with mixed emotions, a heavy heart for our community and our hockey club that I announce, and I guess more important, confirm, that the Edmonton Oilers have agreed to trade Wayne Gretzky to Los Angeles. WAYNE GRETZKY: Getting engaged, getting married, having a baby, and being traded all in one swoop would be enough to put anybody into sort of a derailment. I'm disappointed about having to leave Edmonton. I truly admire all the fans and-- I promised Mess I wouldn't do this. Because of the one year left on my contract, I could sort of direct where the trade was going to happen and what direction it was going to go in. And it really narrowed down to four or five different cities. One was Philadelphia and one was the Detroit Red Wings. The other two cities were New York and the other one was Los Angeles. And so Los Angeles being the one that probably was the weakest as far as a hockey city goes. So when it came down to it, it was really my father that sat down and said listen, you know, Philadelphia's had Bobby Clark and New York's the Rangers, and Detroit's had Gordie Howe. Why don't you do something different and so unique and take on the responsibility of going to a place like Los Angeles and helping building a championship team and an organization there? You're young enough that you can withstand the pressures that go with that. And so ultimately, I decided that that was the right choice. I didn't go there to grow the game of hockey. I didn't go there to make hockey more popular in LA. I really went there to try to win a championship. Like any other job, transferring or moving to a different city or moving to a different job is part of life. And so you sort of look in the mirror and you pick up the pieces and say, all right, I got to go...

About the Instructor

Over his 21-year career, Wayne Gretzky not only rewrote the NHL record book, he also set himself apart as one of the most accomplished professional athletes of all time. Now “The Great One” shares the moments and mindset that made him successful so you can aim for greatness in your own life. Learn the power of an athlete’s mindset and tap into passion, motivation, and dedication. Get ready to take your biggest shot yet.

Featured Masterclass Instructor

Wayne Gretzky

NHL star Wayne Gretzky shares his journey and his approach to a winning mindset, from tapping into your true passion to committing to success every day.

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