One of hockey’s best fighter’s lost his battle with life yesterday as former Detroit Red Wing and Chicago Blackhawk, Bob Probert passed away at the age of 45. Probert was on a boat in Lake St. Claire in Windsor, Ontario when he collapsed. He was then rushed to hospital but unfortunately was unable to be revived.
Truly a player that had significantly more talent that people give him credit for, he will always be known for his fighting. Probert played for 16 seasons in the NHL. His best season came in 1987-1988 when Probie scored 29 goals and accumulated 398 penalty minutes, and played in the all star game. Living in Chicago at that time, I know that I saw my share of his fights, and was always aware of his prescence on the ice. Even from my seat in the second balcony.
You could just feel the tension of the game each time he took his shift, never knowing what was coming next. Some of his best battles were against Chicago Blackhawks enforcer Stu Grimson, as they went toe to toe many, many times. That was during a time when the Red Wings also had Joey Kocur on their roster and together they were named the “Bruise Brothers”, and bruise they did. Creating space for the likes of Stevie Yzerman, the Wings were often feared, yet were unable to land themselves a championship. Nonetheless, those games in the old “Norris” Division, were unlike you’ll ever see again.
His last fight of his career was against Florida Panthers defenceman Paul Laus. Here it is courtesy of You Tube.
I would also like to add a terrific story by the Globe and Mail’s Eric Duhatschek that he wrote yesterday. It was the most read story of the day for that site.
Our condolences go out to the Probert family who leaves behind his loving wife and four children.
Rest in peace Bob.
Thank you for reading.