Kris Manery played eight seasons of professional hockey in Canada, the United States, Austria, and Switzerland. Former Captain of the University of Michigan Wolverines, he played in 250 National Hockey League games with Cleveland, Minnesota, Vancouver, and Winnipeg.
Manery was born in Leamington on September 24, 1954.
A product of the Leamington Minor Hockey program, Manery won the Ontario Hockey Association Junior C Championship with the Leamington Flyers in 1972. Manery played on that team alongside Pat Ribber, the future NHL defenceman and 2006 inductee into the Windsor/Essex County Sports Hall of Fame.
Manery’s strong play in Junior hockey earned him a full-ride scholarship to the University of Michigan. Manery played four seasons the Wolverines, during which time he became one of the school’s all-time leading scorers. A centre and right winger, Manery was named Michigan’s MVP following the ’75-76 season. In ’76-77, his senior year, he captained the Wolverines to the NCAA Championship Game, contested that year at the Detroit Olympia. Unfortunately, Michigan fell in overtime to the University of Wisconsin. Manery was named to the Western Collegiate Hockey Association First All-Star Team.
At the time of his graduation, Manery’s 111 goals in Michigan colours constituted a record.
Out of college, Manery signed as a free agent with the NHL’s Cleveland Barons. Coincidentally, he debuted against the Los Angeles Kings, which included his brother Randy Manery (a 2001 WECSHOF inductee). The Barons went on to merge with the Minnesota North Stars, but Manery kept his place on the roster. He played the next two seasons with Minnesota save for a brief spell in ’78-79 with the Oklahoma City Stars in the Central Hockey League.
In 1979, Manery won a bronze medal with Team Canada at the Izvestia Tournament, an international competition held annually in Russia since ’67.
Manery moved to the Vancouver Canucks during the 1979-80 NHL season but was traded to the Winnipeg Jets before the end of the campaign. He finished the season in Winnipeg and went on to play 47 games in ’80-81 for the Jets. Before the end of the year, he dropped down a level to the CHL’s Tulsa Oilers, signalling the end of his career in the world’s top hockey league.
For his NHL Career, Manery had a total of 63 goals, 64 assists, and 127 points in 250 games.
Manery played 22 regular season and 8 playoff games for Tulsa in ’80-81 and stayed with the club for the entire following season. In ’81-82, he was named the team’s MVP and a Second-Team CHL All-Star.
At that point, Manery moved to Europe, where he would enjoy successful spells with Weiner EV in Vienna, Austria (1982-83) and SC Rapperswil-Jona in Switzerland (’83-85).
He returned to North America in 1985 and played in 14 games for the American Hockey League’s Birmingham Whalers before retiring from hockey.