Bobby Hull, one of the National Hockey League’s superstars of the 1960s, whose blond hair, lightning fast slap shot and furious, rink-length offensive rushes earned him the nickname “the Golden Jet,” died on Monday. He was 84.
The Chicago Blackhawks, for whom Hull played for 15 seasons, announced his death but did not say where he died or cite a cause.
Hull’s great upper body strength lent power to a powerful slap shot that was measured over the years at between 97 and 120 miles per hour. Glenn Hall, a Blackhawks goalie who faced Hull in practice, once said, “The idea was not to stop that thing, but to avoid getting killed.”
Ed Giacomin, a goalie for the Rangers, told The New York Times in 1988 that Hull’s slap shot “would rise or dip. You’d pull up when you should really be ducking. It played games with your mind.”
Hull was the third player in N.H.L. history to score at least 50 goals in a season, following Maurice Richard and Bernard Geoffrion, both of the Montreal Canadiens. He scored 50 goals or more five times with the Blackhawks, peaking at 58 during the 1968-69 season.
Hull left the Blackhawks in 1972 and signed a long-term contract as player-coach for the Winnipeg Jets of the upstart World Hockey Association. During the 1974-75 season, he scored 77 goals.
A complete obituary will follow.