Wednesday, October 26, 2011
Eric Lindros to play in alumni game
By Pierre LeBrun ESPN.com
TORONTO -- The Flyers are bringing the Winter Classic to Philadelphia.
And with it, a reappearance in a Flyers jersey by Eric Lindros.
Lindros will play for Philadelphia's alumni team New Year's Eve as part of the Winter Classic weekend. The Flyers will face the New York Rangers in the annual outdoor game Jan. 2 at Citizens Bank Park.
Eric Lindros totaled 1,398 penalty minutes in a 13-year career that was cut short by concussions and other injuries.
"I was very happy to receive a phone call from [Flyers general manager] Paul Holmgren, who invited me down to play," Lindros told ESPN.com Wednesday. "I said I would love to ... The fans in Philly are great. They're real supportive, they know the game and they're passionate about it. ... I played in four cities. Toronto is obviously right up there in terms of intensity, but Philly is there, too. That's a great sports town."
It will be the first time Lindros, 38, wears a Flyers jersey since Game 7 of the Eastern Conference finals in 2000, when he was knocked out of the game by New Jersey Devils defenseman Scott Stevens.
Lindros said he hopes to get the old "Legion of Doom" line together for the alumni game. John LeClair is in, but so far Lindros hasn't been able to track down Mikael Renberg, who does hockey commentary for Swedish state television SVT.
"People are having a tough time getting a hold of him," Lindros said, chuckling.
Lindros, a former NHL Players' Association executive who is involved with an educational tech company called ClevrU, based out of Waterloo, Ontario, retired from the NHL in November 2007 after a 13-year career that was derailed by a series of concussions and other injuries.
The 6-foot-4, 240-pound power forward had 372 goals, 865 points and 1,398 penalty minutes in 760 games for the Flyers, Toronto Maple Leafs, New York Rangers and Dallas Stars.
He sat out the 2000-01 season because of a contract dispute; the Flyers traded him to the Rangers in August 2001.
He won the Hart Trophy as league MVP in 1995 and was part of the Canadian Olympic team that won gold at the 2002 Salt Lake City Games. He also won silver for Canada in 1992.
"Eric had a tremendous career for the Flyers," Holmgren told ESPN.com on Wednesday. "All the guys we've called to come back and play and have all been excited for the opportunity. We're going to try to make it a great event. I'm looking forward to seeing Eric and a lot of these other guys. It's going to be nice."
Pierre LeBrun covers the NHL for ESPN.com. Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.