Mike Bossy leaves the ice

This is a picture of me outside Soldier Field in Chicago.

Hello and welcome to Today in Sport’s History. My name is Eileen and I am a student at Illinois State University majoring in Editorial Journalism. That is being accompanied by a minor in History. My interest in the professional sporting world started when I was young. I enjoyed sunny days at the ball park with my family. I would also play catch with a softball or throw a football and run basic plays with my dad and my sister. My freshman year of high school I was on the swim team and the softball team and came out with a bad shoulder, but once I got to community college I was able to enjoy sports by sitting on the sideline and writing about them for the school paper. I came to enjoy delivering news to people and started to receive recognition within the community.

When I got to ISU I decided to major in journalism as a way to continue developing my passion, and because I thought that if people were telling me I should keep writing, it might be a good idea. Every student that majors in journalism needs to pick a minor. My wide variety of interests gave me many choices but I landed in the history department. I really don’t know why, other than the fact that I have always enjoyed learning about history. The thought behind creating this blog is that I will be combining a variety of things I enjoy, writing, sports, and of course history.

April 30, 1987, New York Islander, Mike “Boss” Bossy took his skates off after his last NHL game. He took the next year off, and officially retired in 1988. He was inducted to the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1991. And last, but certainly not least, the ceremony to retire his number, 22, for the Islanders took place in 1992. He is known as one of the greatest to ever play for the NHL.

Bossy had his number retired on March 3, 1992.

The 1977 amateur draft gave him the chance to move up to the majors after spending three years with the Laval National of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. He was selected 15 overall by the Islanders. He would remain with the team for his entire career which included four consecutive Stanley Cup trophies.

Bossy came to the team as the right winger expecting to wear the number 17, but at the time, it was taken. His choices were eight, 16, or what he would finally choose 22. The number was chosen because of his birthday, January 22, 1957. When the number 17 became available after his first 18 goals and 20 games, there was no longer a reason to go back to the number he wore before the Islanders took him in.

He won many awards throughout his career, including Rookie of the Year after scoring 53 goals in his first season. At the time of his retirement he held the record of getting to 500 goals the fastest, which was broken by Wayne Gretzky later on.

Bossy has been the Executive director of the Islanders Business Club since 2006. He demonstrates strengths in business when he is working with clients as well as a sense of humor with children who are not old enough to remember the hockey legend that he was.

“There will be times when I’ll visit suites during the season and there will be kids in the suites and they don’t remember who Mike Bossy is or was and that he played for the team, so I always jokingly make a reference to them that my sweater is hanging up in the rafters in the building.”

One of the most notable traits he possesses is his lack of a desire to fight. He was often a target of hits and punches, but his revenge did not include ‘getting even’ like many players do in the NHL. His sweet revenge was to use the one man advantage as another opportunity to score. Unfortunately, getting checked into the wall time and time again would lead to back problems, forcing the legend to retire at the age of 30.

Follow me on Twitter @TodayInSport365

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2 comments

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