Ex-Canadiens' Jean Beliveau has stroke

Updated: February 28, 2012, 5:49 PM ET
Associated Press

MONTREAL -- Montreal Canadiens great Jean Beliveau had a stroke for the second time in two years and is being treated at a hospital.

The 80-year-old Hall of Famer was stricken Monday night and is "undergoing active investigation and treatments" in Montreal, the Canadiens said Tuesday. Team spokesman Donald Beauchamp said the family requested privacy.

"Mr. Beliveau is a great Canadian and a remarkable ambassador for our national sport," Canada Prime Minister Stephen Harper said in a statement. "We wish him a speedy recovery."

The silver-haired Beliveau also was treated for cardiac problems in 1996, and in 2000 was diagnosed with a neck tumor. Beliveau had surgery last year to treat abdominal aneurysms.

Beliveau, long revered by fans, played 20 seasons in the NHL, all with the Canadiens. The center won 10 Stanley Cups and scored 507 goals.

He had short stints with the Canadiens for two consecutive years before joining the team for good for the 1953-54 season. He retired in 1971, capping his career with an unexpected Stanley Cup.


Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press