Casey Hankinson was born May 8, 1976 in Edina, Minnesota. The eighth round, 201st overall selection of the Chicago Blackhawks in the 1995 NHL Entry Draft, Hankinson is a graduate of the University of Minnesota.
A right-winger with strong offensive skills, Hankinson played four season at the University of Minnesota tallying 106 points (50-56-106) in 149 games before making his professional debut with the AHL's Portland Pirates in 1998-99. For the better part of three seasons, Hankinson spent his time in the minors Portland (AHL), Cleveland (IHL) and Norfolk (AHL) before making his NHL debut with Chicago during the 2000-01 season. Hankinson's strong play with Norfolk (30-21-51) caught the eye of the Blackhawk staff and the Edina, Minnesota native found himself suiting up for eleven games with the parent club.
Over the course of the next two years Hankinson spent most of his time in the AHL, establishing a career high 55 points (27-28-59) in 78 games during the 2002-03 season before being acquired by the Anaheim Mighty Ducks in the summer of 2003.