Hockey Hall of Famer Bobby Hull owned a big shot and he was a big shot during an NHL and World Hockey Association career that spanned 23 years.
“He was huge when I was growing up in Canada,” said former NHL player Tom Laidlaw. “He was like the Mickey Mantle of hockey. He was a star player with personality. He was flamboyant.”
Hull, who starred on the ice but had controversies off it, has died at age 84, the Chicago Blackhawks and the NHL Alumni Association announced Monday.
He became the first in NHL history to score more than 50 goals in a season when he netted 54 in 1965-66. He got to 50 or more goals in five seasons for the Blackhawks and led the NHL in goals seven times.
Hull had 31 goals and 25 assists in his fourth season to help lead Chicago to the Stanley Cup championship in 1960-61, the Blackhawks’ first in 49 years.
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“Hull is part of an elite group of players who made a historic impact on our hockey club,” the Blackhawks said in a statement. “The Golden Jet helped the Blackhawks win the 1961 Stanley Cup and delivered countless memories to our fans, whom he adored.
“Generations of Chicagoans were dazzled by Bobby’s shooting prowess, skating skill and overall team leadership that led to 604 career goals, a franchise record that remains to this day. We send our deepest sympathies to the Hull family.”
Many of Hull’s goals were scored on the strength…