Athlete, Hockey player.
Born in Windsor, Ed “Jovo-Cop” Jovanovski is a local hockey product who has been to the highest levels of the game. Born June 26 1976, Ed was actually a latecomer to the game of hockey. It was not until his 11th birthday that he started playing hockey, and by his early teen years he was a dominant member of Windsor Minor Hockey’s (WMHA) AAA program.
His success in minor hockey allowed him to move forward in the game while staying close to home. After finishing with WMHA, he moved on to the Lasalle Vipers Junior B team. He was drafted into the Ontario Hockey League by our hometown Windsor Spitfires, and quickly became a star on some very strong teams through the early 1990’s. His prowess with the Spitfires led to him being the 1st overall pick in the 1994 entry draft. He was also selected to play in the 1994-95 World Junior Hockey Team, a team that won gold.
His physical style of play and offensive powers, along with his leadership ability, quickly led to him being a star at the NHL level as he played a major role in the Florid Panther’s run to the 1995-1996 Stanley Cup finals. A popular player, he quickly earned the nickname “Jovo-Cop” (an allusion to the movie Robocop, Jovanovski’s name, and his ability to patrol the defensive zone.) Ed would finish 3rd in voting for the rookie of the year that same season.
Mr. Jovanovski’s strong play in Florida led to him being traded to the Vancouver Canucks. It was there that he was thrice named the Canucks best defenceman (winning the Babe Pratt Award.) He stayed in Vancouver until moving to Phoenix in 2006, where he stayed until a 2011 return to the Panthers.
While his NHL career was extremely successful, it was in international hockey where Ed won most of his trophies. Along with the aforementioned World Junior Championship, Mr. Jovanovski also won gold on Canada’s 2002 Olympic Men’s Hockey team. He would also win silver at the International Ice Hockey Federation World Championships in both 2005 and 2008.