The native of Meadow Lake, Saskatchewan Jeff Friesen played parts of four seasons with the WHL's Regina Pats. He scored 45 goals in 1992-93 and was named the CHL Rookie-of-the-Year. After scoring 118 points in 1993-94, he was chosen 11th overall in the 1994 NHL Entry Draft by the San Jose Sharks. The talented youngster spent the first half of the lockout-shortened season in junior where he averaged nearly two points per game.
When the NHL season resumed in January 1995, Friesen joined the Sharks and scored 15 goals as a freshman. The young pivot was sufficiently impressive to earn selection to the NHL All-Rookie Team. In 1995-96, Friesen scored 46 points but was not taking advantage of his scoring opportunities. The Sharks missed the post-season and that made the young forward available for the World Championships where Canada won a silver medal.
Friesen broke through with 28 goals in 1996-97 but the Sharks missed the post-season. Friesen registered his first 30-goal season in 1997-98 and helped the improved Sharks qualify for the post-season. He continued to be a regular contributor to San Jose's offense but was traded to Anaheim in 2000-01 as part of the package assembled to acquire superstar forward Teemu Selanne.
Friesen's experiment in Anaheim was short lived as he was shipped to the New Jersey Devils in the summer of 2002. While Friessen registered a solid 23 goals for the defensive-minded Devils during the 2002-03 regular season, he exploded for 10 playoff markers in leading New Jersey to their third Cup title in nine years.
Following a lock out year in 2004-05, Friesen was dealt to the Washington Capitals just prior to the 2005-06 season and went on to play the better part of the season with the club before being re-acquired by Anaheim at the 2006 NHL trading deadline.
Friesen's return to Anaheim was short lived however as he would compete for only 18 games with the Mighty Ducks prior to signing as a free agent with Calgary Flames in the Summer of 2006.
On the international stage, Friesen is a two-time gold medalist with Canada's World Junior team (1994-1995) and has represented his homeland five times at the World Championships (1996, 1997, 1999, 2001 and 2004), winning gold in 1997 and 2004.