NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman issues Statement on the Passing of Guy Lafleur

NEW YORK (April 22, 2022) – National Hockey League Commissioner Gary Bettman today released the following statement regarding the passing of Guy Lafleur:

“You didn’t need to see Guy Lafleur’s name and number on his sweater when ‘The Flower’ had the puck on his stick. As distinctively stylish as he was remarkably talented, Lafleur cut a dashing and unmistakable figure whenever he blazed down the ice of the Montreal Forum, his long blond locks flowing in his wake as he prepared to rifle another puck past a helpless goaltender – or set up a linemate for a goal.

“A native of Thurso, Quebec, selected first overall by the Montreal Canadiens in the 1971 NHL Draft, Lafleur joined the organization with the daunting task of following in the footsteps of franchise legends Maurice Richard and Jean Beliveau. He somehow met those expectations, becoming the Canadiens’ all-time leading point scorer and one of the most beloved players in franchise history – the torch was passed to him and he held it high.

“In 1974-75, his fourth year in the NHL, Lafleur transformed from productive to prolific, recording the first of his six straight seasons of at least 50 goals and 119 points. He won back-to-back Hart Trophies as League MVP in 1976-77 and 1977-78, three straight Art Ross Trophies as NHL scoring leader from 1975-76 to 1977-78, and led the playoffs in scoring three straight seasons (1977, ’78 and ’79), winning the Conn Smythe Trophy in 1977. On one of the most star-studded teams in hockey history, he was the marquee performer, lifting fans out of their seats chanting, ‘Guy! Guy! Guy!’ as he dazzled en route to six straight selections as NHL First-Team All-Star right winger and five Stanley Cups.

“Inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1988, Lafleur was named one of the 100 Greatest NHL Players during the League’s Centennial celebration in 2017. He remained adored in Quebec throughout his post-playing days, signing autographs for hours at countless appearances as a franchise ambassador, having forged a special and enduring bond with the fans of his home province and adopted city. The National Hockey League mourns the passing of the iconic Guy Lafleur and sends its deepest condolences to his wife, Lise; his sons, Martin and Mark; his mother, Pierrette; his granddaughter, Sienna Rose; his four sisters and the entire Lafleur family; and the millions of hockey fans he thrilled.”

Guy Lafleur Statue located at the entrance of the Bell Centre in Montreal. 2012 photo. By Jeangagnon – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https commons.wikimedia.org

FROM WIKIPEDIA COMMONS

Guy Damien LafleurOCCQ (September 20, 1951 – April 22, 2022), nicknamed “The Flower” and “Le Démon Blond“, was a Canadian professional ice hockey player. He was the first player in National Hockey League (NHL) history to score 50 goals in six consecutive seasons as well as 50 goals and 100 points in six consecutive seasons. Between 1971 and 1991, Lafleur played right wing for the Montreal CanadiensNew York Rangers, and Quebec Nordiques in an NHL career spanning 17 seasons, and five Stanley Cup championships in 1973197619771978, and 1979 (all with the Canadiens). In 2017, Lafleur was named one of the 100 Greatest NHL Players in history.

COURTESY NHLmedia.com

Posted in NHL
RELATED ARTICLES