Bill Isaacs was a Mohawk lacrosse player born on Six Nations of the Grand River First Nations Reserve near Brantford, Ontario. He was one of the pioneering superstars of box lacrosse, the indoor version of the sport, when it began in the early 1930s.
Bill Isaacs had many highlights over the course of his amazing career. He led the Haldimand Rifles Team to win the Ontario Championship title in intermediate lacrosse in 1932. He won the Ontario Amateur Lacrosse Association’s Senior A scoring trophy seven times in eight years from 1935 until 1942 (except for 1936). He also won the Jim Murphy Trophy as the Most Valuable Player in the league in 1938. He was part of two different Mann Cup winning teams; the Mimico-Brampton Combines and the Hamilton Tigers.
During his 346-game career, Bill scored a staggering 777 goals and 467 assists, which helped cement his reputation as one of the best centres in the sport’s history. He ranks 11th overall in senior Canadian and professional lacrosse history.
These successes were not without challenges. Bill played lacrosse at a time in Canada when Indigenous Peoples had few opportunities to participate in mainstream sporting events due to inherent racism in sports. Despite this adversity, Bill did not just persevere, he flourished.
Bill Isaacs was inducted into the Canadian Lacrosse Hall of Fame in 1965, the Brantford and Area Sports Hall of Recognition in 1984, the Ontario Lacrosse Hall of Fame in 2008, the Hamilton Sports Hall of Fame in 2011, and Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame in 2015.