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A person would need to be born before 1950 or 1960 to truly appreciate
what Gordie Howe meant to professional ice hockey in North America.
More importantly all the professional hockey players who succeeded
Gordie Howe in the National Hockey League (NHL) through the past four
decades need to bestow credit and praise on Gordie Howe for raising
awareness between the disparity between what the NHL owners were raking
in in profits, and how NHL players salaries climbed after Gordie Howe
un-retired from the NHL and signed with the WHA Houston Aeros. Due to
Gordie Howe's and Mrs. Howe's endless loyalty to the management of the
Detroit Red Wings, this biography depicts how the executives running
the NHL believed they controlled what players would be making in salary
and bonuses 'til death made them part. However, when the World Hockey
Association (WHA) was trying to establish itself as the "other league",
the NHL did not consider the WHA to be a serious threat to their
monopoly because the two biggest hockey stars were playing for the
NHL's Detroit Red Wings and the Chicago Black Hawks.
The two biggest names in the NHL in the 1960's and early 1970's were
Gordie Howe (played extremely well by Michael Shanks) who held most of
the NHL's prestigious scoring records, and the younger Bobby Hull
(played by Lochlyn Munro) whose physical attributes reminded many of
Hercules, and Bobby had a booming slap shot with the scoring touch. Mr.
Hockey provides some good historical detail about the younger Bobby
Hull's exodus to the WHA for an unheard of (for the time) one million
dollars per year. Bobby signed with the WHA shortly after, the old guy,
Gordie Howe retired from the Detroit Red Wings and took a job in their
front office. The movie depicts how much Gordie was missing the on ice
action and was enticed back in to professional hockey by the WHA as
part of a three man deal Mrs. Colleen Howe arranged with the newly
formed Houston Aeros, which allowed the biggest name in hockey, Mr.
Hockey himself, get to play professional hockey with his two skilled
sons Mark and Marty Howe.
In my humble opinion, any true hockey fan has to see this movie as a
tribute not only to Gordie Howe, but to the entire Howe family whose
legacy is a life in hockey itself. This movie gives us all some insight
in to the close knit Howe family ran by mom Colleen, played well by
Kathleen Robertson, their daughter Cathy Howe, played by Emma
Grabinsky, and Gordie and Colleen's two sons, Mark played by Andrew
Herr and Marty played by Dylan Playfair.
On a personal note, I had the opportunity of a life time to meet with
Mr. Howe during a stopover in a Boston airport late one evening. I
approached him very gingerly as he sat alone. I respected his right to
privacy, and he appeared to be suffering from a bit of jet lag. Mr.
Howe could not have been nicer to me, he insisted I sit down and
converse with him. We talked for a good 10 to 15 minutes. He asked if I
had any children and if I would like his autograph for my boys. I told
him I did not want to bother him, but instead he asked what their names
were and he wrote a special something for each of my sons.
Mr. Hockey portrays Gordie Howe as a father first, a hockey legend, a
six time winner of the Art Ross trophy winner, a sports celebrity who
always gave his autograph freely.....but put skates on this man and a
hockey stick in his hand and look out for "Old Elbows"!!!!
All hockey fans should see this Made For TV Movie, which is a deserved
tribute to the single most important man in professional hockey both
for his scoring prowess and his longevity. Gordie Howe played at the
highest level of the game well in to his 50's, he truly is an amazing
man our Mr. Hockey, and because of the class act Gordie Howe has been
for his entire life this film deserves nothing less than a perfect
10/10, just as Gordie Howe has always been a perfect 10. Thanks for so
many great memories Mr. Hockey!
Tags for Mr Hockey The Gordie Howe Story Full Movie
, Kathleen Robertson
, Martin Cummins
, Michael Shanks
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