Warren Rychel played parts of nine seasons in the National Hockey League with five teams. He won the 1996 Stanley Cup with the Colorado Avalanche. Following his playing career, he became involved with the Windsor Spitfires and played a significant role in two Memorial Cup victories.
Rychel was born on May 12, 1967 in Windsor.
A Shoreline Minor Hockey product, Rychel spent three seasons (1984-87) in the Ontario Hockey League, where he played for Sudbury, Guelph, Ottawa, and Kitchener. He went on to play for Saginaw, Peoria, and Indianapolis in the International Hockey League plus Moncton in the American Hockey League.
In 1989, Rychel made his NHL debut with the Chicago Blackhawks, featuring in two games. He dropped down to the IHL for the following two seasons before earning a call-up during the 1990-91 NHL Playoffs. Although he was always most valuable as an enforcer, Rychel managed one goal and three assists in three games.
Rychel finally stuck at the NHL level in 1992-93, when he played a full season with the Los Angeles Kings. He memorably scored six goals and seven assists in 23 playoff games that year, including two game-winning goals, as the Kings reached the Stanley Cup Finals.
Rychel played regularly with the Kings for two years before finding himself traded midseason to the Toronto Maple Leafs in 1994-95. He played the following season with the Colorado Avalanche, where he won the 1996 Stanley Cup. He became the first Windsor native to win hockey’s greatest prize since Glen Skov won three Cups with Detroit in the 1950s.
Rychel moved to the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim for the following two campaigns before returning to Colorado via trade towards the end of the 1997-98 season. He retired from hockey in 1999.
Rychel finished his NHL career with 38 goals and 39 assists in 406 games. He accumulated 1,422 penalty minutes.
After his playing days, Rychel worked as a scout for the Phoenix Coyotes. In 2006, he became part owner and General Manager of the Windsor Spitfires. In this role, he significantly contributed to the team’s Memorial Cup Championships in 2009 and 2010. As of 2015, he still held the position.