Richard Keyes is Kalamazoo’s first professional hockey player. After retiring from a 9-year professional playing career he returned to the area to help others achieve what he accomplished.
Son of former Wings Stadium manager, Dick Keyes, Richard grew up a rink rat watching the K-Wings. He played his U8 youth hockey with Kalamazoo Optimist Hockey Association. Richard moved on to AAA organizations such as the Grand Rapids Whalers and the West Michigan Warriors programs. He progressed to the Michigan Nationals AAA hockey program out of Detroit and played in the top league in the country as an underage.
Richard gained national/international attention playing for the Kalamazoo Jr. K-Wings a the age of 15. He became the leading goal scorer and point getter in Tier I Junior A hockey in America. He is still the all time leading scorer in the NAJHL. He played on the USA National team in 1992. He was voted Michigan’s hockey player of the year, Junior hockey player of the year, and voted runner up for the U.S.A. Hockey player of the year in 1994. His achievements helped him attain a full ride scholarship to Michigan State University and on to a 9-year professional playing career.
His impressive play with the puck as a goal scorer and playmaker often overshadowed his ultimate intelligence of the game. His positional play and analytical ability to break down the game at a high speed put him into hockey’s elite at controlling and changing the course of the game.
Richard has studied the game of hockey under the tutorage of many hockey greats. Over his career Richard has developed a very unique hybrid philosophy of the game and has incorporated it into his coaching values.
Hockey Awards & Achievements
• Played for the USA National hockey team 1992
• NAJHL All Star Game MVP 1992-1993
• NAJHL First Team All Star 1992-1993
• NAJHL Scoring Title 1992-1993 (Gp-38, G-54, Ast-43, Pts-• 97)
NAJHL Most Goals 1992-1993 (G-54)
• U.S. Olympic Festival participant 1993 and 1994
• NAJHL 6 goals and 1 Assist in a single game
• NAJHL All Star Game 1993-1994
• NAJHL Scoring Title 1993-1994 (Gp-40, G-51, Ast-53, Pts- 104)
• NAJHL Most Goals 1993-1994 (G-51)
• NAJHL First Team All Star 1993-1994
• Ranked #1 Top College Prospect 1994
• NAJHL All Time Leading Scorer
• Michigan Hockey Player of the year 1993-1994
• Junior Hockey Player of the year award 1994
• Finalist for USA Hockey Player of the year award 1994
• Full scholarship to Michigan State University
• Voted to the NCAA (honorable mention) all rookie hockey team 1994 -1995
• Led Columbus Chill (ECHL) in goals 1998-1999
• IHL Rookie player of the month
• Led Toledo Storm (ECHL) in scoring 2001-2002
Led • Kalamazoo Wings (UHL) in +/- 2000-2001
• Led Kalamazoo Wings (UHL) in goals 2002-2003
• All Star appearances (UHL) 2000-2001 (3g, 2a)
• Led Leipzig Blue Lions (GerObl) in goals 2004-2005