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Top 40 Goal-Scorers: No. 18

You might know the man who owns the No. 18 spot on our Chicago Wolves Top 40 Countdown, presented by Jewel-Osco, as a goal-scorer. You likely know him as a lumberjack. You definitely know him as a winner.

When Dan Plante joined the Wolves in 1998, he already owned 157 games of NHL experience with the New York Islanders. He also, according to the Daily Herald, had just won the pole climbing championship at the World Lumberjack Championships in Hayward, Wisconsin. The Wolves had just captured their first league championship. Both sides figured there was some more winning to do — and they were right.

During Plante’s first season in Chicago, he ranked fourth on the squad with 21 goals as the Wolves won the IHL’s Midwest Division and posted a winning percentage of .671 in 1998-99 — nearly the same as the championship team the year before. But the team finished one round short of the Finals.

The Wolves didn’t leave anything to chance the following year. The team posted a franchise-record .695 winning percentage and rolled all the way to the 2000 Turner Cup title. Plante contributed 11 goals during the regular season, then stepped up for 3 goals and 5 assists during the 16-game postseason run.

Plante produced 15 goals in 2000-01 as the Wolves returned to the Turner Cup Finals in the IHL’s swan song. Then, in the Wolves’ debut AHL season, Plante posted 11 goals and 15 assists as Chicago won the Calder Cup championship in its first try.

Plante finished his four years in Chicago with 58 goals and 49 assists in 306 regular-season games. After claiming the 2002 title, Plante retired and put his hockey experience and University of Wisconsin education to good use as a player agent. In 2008, he established Forward Hockey — an agency that continues to serve dozens of professional players.

Want to enjoy more of the countdown?

No. 40: Gage Quinney
No. 39: Tim Breslin
No. 38: Nathan Oystrick
No. 37: Ben Simon
No. 36: Curtis McKenzie
No. 35: Kamil Piros
No. 34: Mark Mancari
No. 33: Simon Gamache
No. 32: Guy Larose
No. 31: Wade Megan
No. 30: Shane Harper
No. 29: Michael Davies
No. 28: Karl Stewart
No. 27: Cory Larose
No. 26: Pat Cannone
No. 25: Brian Wiseman
No. 24: Colin Stuart
No. 23: Brian Noonan
No. 22: Tim Bergland
No. 21: Joey Crabb
No. 20: Jordan Lavallee-Smotherman
No. 19: Dan Currie