There are so many important reasons for us hockey players to look back on some of the old-time greats that the game has offered us. With his magnetic personality and the classy way he played the game, Jean Béliveau is likely the most respected player by NHLers young and old to date.
What can we learn from this great HOCKEY LEGEND?
One of the greatest life lessons Béliveau offers us is the combination of a relentless competitor and a class act on and off the ice. Just because it’s an aggressive game and you compete to win at all costs does not mean you can’t be a nice guy or girl while doing so. In fact, you gain more respect from your peers winning in this manner. Béliveau was a towering 6’3” and 205 lbs centre and whether he was on or off the ice he never had a hair out of place. He was known as hockey’s gentleman warrior – which is how I think all should play the game. Always play and win with class.
Jean Béliveau played from 1950-1971, he won 17 Stanley Cups, all with the Montreal Canadiens (10 as a player and 7 as an executive), the most by any individual ever. He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame instantly (the standard three-year post-retirement waiting period waived) and has won numerous trophies:
Art Ross Trophy: 1955-56
Hart Memorial Trophy: 1955-56 and 1963-64
Conn Smythe Trophy: 1964-65