The real reason Mario Lemieux made his amazing comeback is absolutely heartwarming

Mario Lemieux was the comeback king. He’s widely acknowledged as the second best hockey player in history, only behind Wayne Gretzky.

But it’s crazy to think about what Lemieux could’ve accomplished if he had a healthier career than he actually did. During the 1990s, nobody except Lemieux won a scoring title during a season which Lemieux played at least 60 games. It happened four times, and he retired after the 1996-97 season. 

Source: Bildbyran

And it wasn’t the first time Lemieux had called it quit. Lemieux made remarkable comebacks in 1991, from back surgery, in 1993 from Hodgkin’s disease, and in 1995 from a year’s layoff for health reasons. 

When he retired in 1997, most thought it was for good. But he had other plans. Three years later, when he was the owner of the Pittsburgh Penguins, Mario Lemieux shocked the hockey world with announcing his return to hockey.

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Many thought the comeback had something to do with enhancing the finances of the Pittsburgh Penguins franchise, but he said that he only missed the game. He also felt that he had a lot to offer.

“I’m not coming back to embarrass myself,” Lemieux said. “That’s the last thing I would do. I wouldn’t come back unless I thought I could play at a high level … to try to regain the title of the best player in the world. It’s something I have the desire and passion to do.”

Source: Bildbyran

Lemieux was a six-time scoring champion when he made his comeback. And he had one more reason to get back to the game. He wanted for his four children, especially 4-year-old Austin, to see him play for the first time.

“He’s a young kid who gets up early in the morning with a hockey stick in his hands and he loves the game of hockey, and he’ll get to see Daddy play before it’s too late,” Lemieux said.

When he finally broke the news to his children, he did with a joke.

”We told them, ‘Daddy’s coming back to play with Jagr,”‘ Lemieux said, drawing loud laughter.

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