Prior to facing off against Lindros’ hometown Toronto Maple Leafs on Thursday night, the Philadelphia Flyers honored Hall of Fame centerman, Eric Lindros. The team raised their former captain’s No. 88 to the rafters, making Lindros the sixth player to have his number retired by the franchise.
Eric Lindros defined the power forward style of play during his playing career. At 6-foot-4, 240 lbs., he could hit and score with the best of them. He possessed a rare combination of size, speed, and scoring ability that was never seen before in the NHL. After one of the most historic junior hockey careers ever, Lindros was drafted by the Quebec Nordiques with the first overall selection in the 1991 NHL Entry Draft. The Flyers would acquire Lindros via a blockbuster trade with Quebec in 1992. He would become the youngest captain in team history in 1994, at just 21 years of age.
Lindros played for the Philadelphia Flyers for eight seasons (’92-’00) and was wildly productive.
In 1993, “The Big E” was named to the NHL All-Rookie team for his stellar play during his first year in the league. His 1.35 points per game with the team has never been surpassed. He won the Hart Trophy in 1995 after the lockout-shortened season, notching 70 points on the campaign. Lindros would also claim the Lester B. Pearson Award (now the Ted Lindsay Award) that year as the league’s top player as voted on by the NHLPA. Lindros led the Flyers to the Stanley Cup Finals in 1997.
Eric Lindros is also known for centering one of the most notorious and productive lines the league has ever seen. “The Legion of Doom” consisted of Flyers’ legends John LeClair, Lindros, and Mikael Renberg. The trio combined for 305 goals and 361 assists in 547 games played.
After several injuries and a heated contract dispute, Lindros was traded to the New York Rangers where he remained a productive player. He would would then have short, injury-riddled stints with the Toronto Maple Leafs and Dallas Stars. The Flyers and Lindros would patch up their relationship after the falling out that occurred, thanks in large part to current Flyers President Paul Holmgren.
Eric Lindros retired in 2007 at the age of 34. He resides in Toronto with his family and continues to be an advocate for concussion research.
Lindros was surrounded by his family and past awards, Thursday night. The team played a touching video tribute and then team president Paul Holmgren said some kind words to the honoree. Lindros spoke for several minutes and then the Flyers raised his number to the rafters of the Wells Fargo Center, forever immortalizing his legacy.