Today, we just learned of the very sad passing of “Mr. Hockey” Gordie Howe at the age of 88. The greatest hockey player of all time – I mean the guy played professional hockey in five different decades! Let’s look back to when he played in Hartford…
He started playing in 1945, and he’s forever associated with the Detroit Red Wings. If you’re not a hockey fan, but you go to the XL Center for either a concert or a Wolf Pack game, up in the rafters you’ll see a big #9. That’s for him. His last season ever in the NHL was right here in Connecticut.
This was the first NHL season of the Hartford Whalers right after the merger with the WHA. He actually joined the team two years prior, when they were the New England Whalers in the WHA. But just a week after his 52nd (!!) birthday – and in a season where he played 80 games – the Whalers were in Montreal and Gordie got an assist from none other than his very own son Mark for his 801st and final NHL goal ever – April 8, 1980:
You can learn more about Gordie’s time in Connecticut with this Connecticut Hockey Hall of Fame profile: