Guy Lafleur’s favorite players today include Gallagher, Plekanec

Ryan Kennedy
Guy Lafleur (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images)

QUEBEC CITY – Few players inspire as much awe in Quebec as Guy Lafleur, so it was no surprise that the Hall of Fame right winger was a popular man when his 1971 Remparts reunited for this year’s Memorial Cup festivities. And since ‘Le Demon Blonde’ was one of the most electrifying players to ever lace up skates, it only made sense to ask him which current NHLers catch his eye.

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Hall of Famer Larry Robinson on the ’89 Canadiens: “We screwed up.”

Larry Robinson (Photo by B Bennett/Getty Images)

It’s hard to top Larry Robinson’s resume. Not only did the Hall of Famer win six Stanley Cups as a defenseman with the Montreal Canadiens, but he also hoisted the trophy as head coach of the New Jersey Devils in 2000. Now the director of player development for the San Jose Sharks after three years as an associate coach, Robinson has been helping this generations’ defenders hone their craft in Northern California.

But there’s always the one that got away and for Robinson, it came in 1989, when he played his last season for the Habs, before joining the Los Angeles Kings the next year. Montreal faced off against Calgary in a rematch of the 1986 final (won by the Habs) and despite the fact the Flames had a slightly better record in the regular season, Robinson believes the Canadiens should have won the Cup.

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Russians should play back home until they’re 28: Slava Fetisov

Vladimir Tarasenko (Bruce Kluckhohn/NHLI via Getty Images)

Relations between Russia and North America are a little frosty right now. Discipline is expected from the IIHF after the Russians took off during the Canadian national anthem at the World Championship, while the newest issue of Harper’s magazine reveals that 81 percent of Russians today have a negative view of the United States, compared with just 25 percent in 2013.

And now a hockey legend has waded into the fray.

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Howe family convinced controversial stem cell treatment has saved Gordie Howe’s life

Ken Campbell
Gordie Howe  (Photo by Len Redkoles/NHLI via Getty Images)

It is rare, almost unheard of, for the Canadian government to name anything after anyone who is still alive. But when plans for the Gordie Howe International Bridge linking Windsor to Detroit were unveiled Thursday, it was a clear sign of the respect and admiration that Mr. Hockey still commands.

But according to Gordie’s son and fellow Hall of Famer Mark, nobody would have had to worry about the government bending that edict if the family hadn’t elected to have him undergo stem cell treatment in Mexico in December. A second round of treatments is scheduled for early June.

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Rob Ford is ready to stop the gravy train at the Hall of Fame

Josh Elliott
Rob Ford

Sorry, hockey world. Rob Ford is your problem now.

The controversial former mayor of Toronto was elected to the Hall of Fame’s board of directors late last month, a Hall spokesperson confirmed this weekend.

Ford, who now serves as a Toronto city councillor, will hold a non-voting position on the board alongside two other city councillors. That means he’ll have no say in who is inducted.

Ford bowed out of Toronto’s last mayor election after he was diagnosed with stomach cancer. He ran for a council seat instead, and has settled into a quieter role at Toronto City Hall since winning that seat on council.

But the man’s pop culture legacy remains, and it’s going to be hard to ignore as he joins the Hall of Fame board.
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Hockey Hall of Fame clears path for Chris Pronger’s immediate induction – and it’s about time

Chris Pronger signs autographs at the 2014 NHL Awards in Las Vegas. (Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

According to an report, former NHL star defenseman Chris Pronger’s road to the Hockey Hall of Fame was cleared Thursday when the HHOF’s general voting members ratified changes to the induction eligibility criteria for players. The decision means it’s possible Pronger will be welcomed into the HHOF’s next group of honorees – and regardless of what you think of the process that led to this point, you can’t argue the 40-year-old doesn’t deserve to be acknowledged as one of the game’s all-time great blueliners and competitors.

The report states one of the HHOF’s new bylaws (No. 26, in this case) includes this section, which directly addresses Pronger’s situation: “a person is not eligible for election in the player category if he or she has played in a professional or international hockey game (which terms shall not be considered to include games played only or primarily for charitable or recreational purposes, or for any other limited purpose that the Chair of the Board of Directors determines, in his or her discretion, should not disqualify for nomination a person otherwise eligible) during any of the three (3) playing seasons immediately prior to his or her election.”

In effect, the new bylaw means that players such as Pronger – someone who everyone knows won’t play again because of injuries, yet who doesn’t file retirement papers because of salary cap issues – can be considered after the standard three-year period following their final game. Read more

Jagr moves into fifth in career goals — now watch his 10 best

Jared Clinton
jagr cheeks

Thursday night, Jaromir Jagr further solidified his Hall of Fame credentials by passing Phil Esposito for fifth all-time in career goals.

By scoring his 718th career goal, a beautiful snipe from the far circle, Jagr moved 13 goals behind Marcel Dionne as the fourth greatest goal scorer in NHL history. It’s not unthinkable that he could surpass Dionne if he plays at least one more year, and, if he were to get incredibly hot, 23 goals would tie him with Brett Hull for third all-time.

To the matter at hand, though: when you score 718 goals, there are bound to be more than a few beauties. Jagr’s list of career highlights is nearly endless and these are the 10 best goals of his career, almost all of which came in a Penguins uniform: Read more

Legendary Oilers dressing room attendant Joey Moss to be inducted into Alberta Sports Hall of Fame

Adam Proteau
Joey Moss (Derek Leung/Getty Images)

Iconic Edmonton Oilers and Edmonton Eskimos dressing room attendant Joey Moss is one of the most beloved figures in the city’s history, and the 51-year-old will be officially recognized as such in May when he’s inducted into the Alberta Sports Hall of Fame.

The Hall announced its new class of inductees Wednesday, and Moss is one of 11 honorees. He’s in the esteemed company of Olympic gold medalist curler Kevin Martin, Olympic gold medalist hockey player Carla MacLeod and former NHLer Bruce MacGregor (who also served as Oilers assistant GM) and hockey builder James “Bearcat” Murray. They’ll be honored at the ASHF’s induction banquet on May 29.

Moss has been famous in Edmonton – and for that matter, the hockey community – since joining the organization (and working primarily with the Oilers’ training staff) in the 1984-85 campaign; he’s been a part of four Oilers Stanley Cup championship teams and is a tremendous role model for those living with Down syndrome.

Moss was presented with the NHL Alumni Association’s “Seventh Man Award” prior to the 2003 All-Star Game, and four years later, he was given the Mayor’s Award from Edmonton mayor Stephen Mandel as a recognition of the Oilers’ commitment to people with disabilities. He’s also served as an assistant to the training staff of the CFL’s Eskimos since 1986.

Oilers captain and native Edmontonian Andrew Ference paid Moss the highest compliment after hearing the news: Read more