Cody Rudkowsky

 

 

Seattle Totems 1995-99
Goalie – 6’1" – 200 lbs.

Awards/Honors

  • WHL Most Valuable Player:  1999
  • WHL Top Goaltender:  1999
  • WHL First Team All-Star:  1999

Championships

  • None

 

Statistics

Regular Season Playoffs
GP W L T SO GAA GP W L SO GAA
1995-96 Seattle Thunderbirds 2 0 0 0 0 8.57
1996-97 Seattle Thunderbirds 40 19 16 1 0 3.44 1 1 0 0 0.00
1997-98 Seattle Thunderbirds 53 20 22 3 1 3.74 5 1 4 0 3.88
1998-99 Seattle Thunderbirds 64 34 17 10 7 2.92 11 5 6 1 2.92
Seattle Totals 159 73 55 14 8 3.32 17 7 10 1 3.11
NHL Totals 1 1 0 0 0 0.00

After a brief two-game stint with the Thunderbirds in 1995-96, Cody Rudkowsky returned to the Thunderbirds to split the goaltending duties with Jeff Blair during the 1996-97 season.  While he had a good season and a winning record, Blair was the better goaltender and was the starter throughout the 1997 playoff run that took the Thunderbirds to their first ever WHL finals series, where they were swept in four games by Lethbridge.

Both goaltenders returned in 1997-98, but Blair was traded to Saskatoon early in the season and Cody took over the job as starter.  He finished the year slightly under .500, though the team was not noted as being particularly good defensively.

Rudkowsky went into the 1998-99 season as a 20-year-old goaltender, which shows how good the Thunderbirds coaching staff thought he was.  He repaid the with a stellar season, going 34-17-10 and setting a franchise record (broken by Bryan Bridges with 13 in 2004-05) with seven shutouts.  What makes his shutout totals even more impressive is that he earned five of them over the course of a nine game stretch in February, 1999.  In recognition for his success Rudkowsky was named the league’s top goaltender (Del Wilson Trophy) and MVP (Four Broncos Memorial Trophy), and was the runner up for the CHL Player of the Year award.

In addition to being an excellent goaltender, Cody wasn’t afraid of the physical part of the game and often mixed things up with opponents who he felt were too close to the crease.  In perhaps his most memorable incident he skated the length of the ice to engage fellow goaltender Aaron Baker of Tri-Cities in a fight after Baker started sucker-punching Thunderbirds players where were involved in a brawl with his teammates.  The pair skated away from the battle in the corner and took their fight to center stage, with Rudkowsky raining blows down on Baker who was seen later in the stands (both goalies were ejected) with a black eye. 

His 73 career wins in Seattle are the third most in franchise history, and his 3.32 GAA is the best in team history for any goaltender appearing in more than 50 games.  His record of eight career shutouts stood as a franchise high until it was overtaken by Bryan Bridges early in the 2004-05 season. 

Signed as a free agent by the St. Louis Blues in 1999, Rudkowsky went on to play in both the ECHL and AHL and earned his first (and so far only) NHL win with St. Louis during the 2002-03 season.