March 6 (UPI) — Henri Richard — who won a record 11 Stanley Cups with the NHL’s Montreal Canadiens — died Friday. He was 84.
Richard battled Alzheimer’s disease and lived the last years of his life at home in Laval, Quebec, Canada. The Hall of Fame center played his entire 20-year career with the Canadiens.
“Henri Richard was one of the true giants of the game,” NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said in a news release. “The entire National Hockey League family mourns the passing of this incomparable winner, leader, gentleman and ambassador for our sport and the Montreal Canadiens.”
Richard was a four-time All-Star. He won the Stanley Cup five consecutive times from 1956 through 1960. He went on to win the Stanley Cup in six of nine seasons from 1965 through 1973.
Richard played alongside his brother, Maurice “Rocket” Richard,” during his first championship run. Maurice Richard, a 14-time All-Star and eight-time champion, was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1961.
Henri Richard, known as “pocket rocket” because of his 5-foot-7, 160-pound frame, was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1979.
Henri Richard scored the Stanley Cup winning goal against the Detroit Red Wings in 1966. He also scored the tying and winning goals in Game 7 of the 1971 Stanley Cup. He retired after the 1974-1975 season, and the Canadiens retured his No. 16 jersey in 1975.
Henri Richard ranks third on the Canadiens’ all-time scoring list. His 1,258 games player remain a Canadiens record. His 11 championships are tied with Boston Celtics legend Bill Russell for the most championships won by a player in North American sports history.
Henri Richard is survived by his wife, Lise, children Michele, Gilles, Denis, Marie-France and Natalie, and 10 grandchildren and four great grandchildren.