Bobby Hull, the “Golden Jet” of Hockey, Dies at 84
Bobby Hull, the "Golden Jet" of Hockey, Dies at 84
Bobby Hull, the “Golden Jet” of Hockey, Passes Away at the Age of 84
Bobby Hull, a winger for the Chicago Black Hawks for many years who was known as the “Golden Jet” for his speed, high-speed shots, and showmanship, has died at age 84. His speed, high-velocity shots, and showmanship made him one of the most popular hockey players of all time.
The team, which now just goes by the word “Blackhawks,” tweeted about the death but didn’t say anything else.
The Devil and Bobby Hull:
“Hull was the Canadian Superman,” wrote author Gare Joyce of the Ontario-born athlete in his 2011 book “The Devil and Bobby Hull.” The book tells the story of Mr. Hull’s life before and after he was accused of being racist and abusing his wife.
Mr. Bobby was one of the NHL’s biggest stars during the time when there were only six teams: Chicago, Boston, Detroit, Montreal, New York, and Toronto. He was a flashy player who scored a lot of goals.
Fans stood up when Mr. Hull rushed up the ice, and he scored 50 or more goals in a season five times. He also made the slap shot, a relatively new way to shoot, into an offensive weapon. He was on the cover of Sports Illustrated five times, which was a first for a hockey player at the time and a sign that hockey was accepted by the general public.
He taught his skills to one of his sons, Hockey Hall of Famer Brett Hull, who scored even more goals than his father. Dennis Hull, who was Mr. Bobby’s brother and was known as the “Silver Jet,” played with him for many years in Chicago.
In 1961, Mr. Hull and teammate Stan Mikita helped end the Montreal Canadiens’ record run of five straight Stanley Cups. They then beat Gordie Howe’s Detroit Red Wings, 4 games to 2, to give Chicago its first championship in 23 years. The next championship wouldn’t come until 2010. Mr. Bobby told Joyce that when he won his only Stanley Cup at age 22, he thought he would win many more.
Mr. Hull’s games were always full:
During his 15 seasons with Chicago in the NHL, Mr. Bobby’s games were always full. He scored the most goals in the league seven times, which was a record that stood for 50 years until Alex Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals beat it in 2019. He had the most points in the NHL three times, and he was on the NHL’s first team 10 times.
In 1968, Mr. Hull thought that his popularity didn’t match his pay, so he quit his job to try to get more money. The Black Hawks called his bluff, and Mr. Hull had no other choice but to come back to the team with a pay cut. He had to pay a fine and say sorry to the public because he missed part of the season.
This was the start of Mr. Hull’s last season in Chicago, but it was also the beginning of an era when superstar athletes made millions of dollars.
Money is the name of the game now:
Mr. Hull told Sports Illustrated in 1972 when he was negotiating with the World Hockey Association to get what he wanted, that “money is the name of the game now.”
Mr. Hull won championships and scored titles in the WHA, but his success came at a steep price. Team Canada only permitted NHL players to participate in the 1972 Summit Series against the Soviet Union.
“I wanted to play more than anything else. But those NHL giants chose to repay me “Later, Mr. Hull told the Associated Press. So that Mr. Hull could play in the 1974 Summit Series, the regulations were soon modified. (The score for the USSR was 4-1-3.)
After the NHL bought the WHA late in his career, Mr. Hull was traded to the Hartford Whalers, where he played with Howe for a short time.
He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1983:
Mr. Hull was basically expelled from the Black Hawks as a result of the pay issue, in contrast to other hockey players of the era who remained involved in the sport after retiring. He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1983. In Ontario, he now farms and tends cattle after giving up hockey.
Robert Marvin Hull Jr. was born on January 3, 1939, in Port Anne, Ontario. He was the oldest son and fifth of 11 children. His father, who was a farmer and a foreman at a cement company, pushed his sons to play hockey.
Mr. Bobby played football at St. Catharines High School and hockey for the St. Catharines Teepees, a team in the highest amateur league in Canada, the junior Ontario Hockey Association. Mr. Hull dropped out of high school and signed with the Black Hawks because he was so good at hockey at such a young age.
Mr. Hull was a beloved figure in hockey:
For many years, Mr. Hull was a beloved figure in hockey. He often signed autographs for hours after games and did good work for charity. But things that happened off the ice gave a darker picture of the one-time winner of the NHL’s Lady Byng trophy, which is given for “gentlemanly conduct.”
At least three times, he was married, and two of his wives said he hurt them. Some of his kids said that he wasn’t there for them and drank too much. In 1987, he pleaded guilty to hitting a police officer who had been called to the scene of a fight with his wife Deborah. He had to pay a $150 fine and be watched by the court for six months.
His thoughts in Russian newspaper:
He is said to have told a Russian newspaper in 1998 that Adolf Hitler had some “good ideas.” When asked if he was racist in the same interview, Mr. Bobby is said to have said, “I don’t give a damn.” I’m not going to run for any office.”
Later, Mr.Bobby said that the reporter for the Moscow Times had gotten his words wrong.
In a statement, he said, “I am very upset by the false things that have been said about me in relation to Adolf Hitler and the black community in the United States.” He is said to have sued the Moscow Times, which stood by what it wrote, and the Toronto Sun, which reprinted the interview. His lawyer, Tim Danson, said that these lawsuits were settled out of court.
In 2002, ESPN aired a “SportsCentury” profile that talked about these and other alleged incidents of domestic violence. One of his ex-wives, figure skater Joanne McKay, who gave birth to five of his children, including Brett, said that he beat her with a shoe with a steel heel.
Michelle Hull, his daughter about him:
His daughter, Michelle Hull, is a lawyer who helps battered women. She says she chose this job because she saw how he treated her mother, Joanne.
Still, the Blackhawks brought back the two-time NHL MVP in 2007 and made him a team ambassador. They also put life-size bronze statues of him and Mikita outside United Center, where the Blackhawks play. In 1986, the Black Hawks changed the way they spelled their name to Blackhawks.
He then said, “What I really meant was that I’d think more! Put that down! But thinking can get you into trouble just as much as anything else.”
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