The NHL has barely seen players that were good at just scoring as Luc Robitaille. He wasn’t the fastest on the ice and perhaps not the most skilled player with the puck, but he had an almost unique ability to be in the right place at the right time, and it got him to 1,394 points in the NHL.
Luc Robitaille played for the LA Kings, Pittsburgh Penguins, New York Rangers, and Detroit Red Wings. He won the Stanley Cup once, and in 2010, he was elected into the Hockey Hall of Fame. There isn’t much that we don’t know about Luc, but not everybody knows why he got the nickname “Lucky Luc.” Many believe it’s because of the French” Lucky Luke” cartoon. But apparently, it has to do with Tiger Williams.
“It was Tiger Williams, and the reason was… I think it was the day after my second game, I was living with Marcel Dionne at the time, and I didn’t have a car. Marcel had a Mercedes, and he had a big house. We had someone then nicknamed Luke, and as soon as somebody yelled it, I thought it was me,” Robitaille explained on the Cam & Strick Podcast.
“So in my first game and my first shift in the NHL, I’m never going to forget it. I was playing with Marcel.”
Luc says he waited to jump on the ice, but he and his linemate were rejected shift after shift.
“My legs were shaking, and they even put in the fourth line before us. We didn’t go until about 16 minutes into the game. And Marcel was like:” Calm down, kid, calm down! We’re going to go out there.” So, then it’s our line, and Marcel is out there, and my leftwinger came and dumped it in, and the goalie stopped the puck behind the net,” he recalled. “And I jumped on the ice, and I went in the zone, and I saw the goalkeeper throw it along the wall. I realized that he’d screwed up, and the only guy there was Marcel Dionne at the hashmark. So I sprinted to the front of the net, and I yelled as loud as I could in French, and he saw me, and in a flick of a wrist, I got the puck and just put it in the net. And it was my first shift.”
” So next day, I come to practice, and Tiger’s like:” Hey Lucky, hey lucky!”. And the guys were like:” What the… Why are you calling him Lucky?” And he goes:” Well, his new nickname is lucky, ’cause I can’t just say Luke to everybody. And to me, he’s the luckiest guy I’ve ever seen. He lives in the biggest house, he drives to practice in a Mercedes, and he scored a goal in his first shift and the first shot in the NHL. That’s luck to me!” And that just stuck around forever.”
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