|Full Name||Mario Lemieux|
|Profession (s)||Ice Hockey Player|
|Date of Birth||October 5, 1965|
|Day of Birth||Tuesday|
|Place Of Birth||Montreal, Quebec, Canada|
|Mario Lemieux’s Income / Salary:|
|Total worth||$150 Million|
- Mario Lemieux was born on October 5, 1965, in Montreal to Pierrette and Jean-Guy Lemieux. Mario grew up with his older brother Alain and Richard in the environment of a working-class family in the district of Vill Emard in the outskirts of Montreal.
- Lemieux started playing hockey when he was only three and was egged on by his father to carve a niche in the field of ice hockey. His father who was a construction worker used to pack snow in their hallway to enable his children for playing ice skating.
- The three of them practiced in the basement by playing with wooden kitchen spoons as hockey sticks and used bottle caps as pucks.
- Lemieux would come back from school and play hockey daily and soon his flair could not be hidden.
Career and Accomplishments
- Lemieux started had his first encounter after he gained eligibility, in the Major Junior Hockey League of Quebec. He had played for Quebec’s Laval Voisins.
- It was under the aegis of young Lemieux that his team made to the two league championships, in 1983 and 1984 where he became the highest-scoring junior player of all time.
- Scoring an average of four points in each game, Lemieux made several records in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.
- In the 1983-84 season, Lemieux had 282 points, including 133 goals and 149 assists in 70 games. In the same year, he was voted as the top junior player in Canada.
- The Pittsburgh Penguins were in search of a natural goal scorer to improve their performance and break their misfortune of finishing last. Therefore they picked up Lemieux in the 1984 Entry Draft.
- Lemieux played in the NHL All-Star Game and registered another record in his name by becoming the first rookie to be named the All-Star Game’s Most Valuable Player.
- In 1984-85, Lemieux won the Calder Memorial Trophy for top rookie.
- Another five-goal performance of Lemieux happened when he led a 10-7 victory against Philadelphia Flyers in 1989.
- Lemieux had to undergo a surgery to fix a herniated disk, as a result, he had to miss 50 games in the 1990–91 NHL season. But he returned for the Penguins and made them win their Stanley Cup defeating Minnesota North Stars.
- During the 1991-92 season, he participated only in 64 games due to his injury. But he played the Penguins against the Chicago Blackhawks in the Stanley Cup Final with a total of 78 play-offs points.
- The most shocking incident happened on January 1993, when Lemieux announced that he had been diagnosed with Hodgkin’s disease which is cancer of the lymph nodes.
- For the treatment, he had to undergo radiation treatments as a result of which he missed two months of play. His absence scaled-down the performance of the Penguins. But he was back with the Penguins by March.
- On the last day of his radiation treatment, he went to Philadelphia to play against the Flyers and scored a goal in a 5-4 loss. Despite the loss, he was given a standing ovation by Philadelphia fans. His team then won 15 games back to back.
- In April, the Penguins defeated the New York Rangers by 10-5 and in this game, Lemieux had made five goals. The most remarkable thing is that, despite not being present for most of the season, Lemieux had got the scoring title of the League for more than 157 points.
- The 1996-97 season was a special one as Lemieux scored his 600th goal in a game which was the 719th match of his career. His record was almost at par with Wayne Gretzky’s 600 goals in 718 games.
- In 1997, Lemieux took his first retirement and with that, he became the only player to retire with more than 2 points per game average.
- In 1999 the Pittsburgh team grappled with great financial distress and bankruptcy. Lemieux, who owed millions in deferred salary bought the team and kept it in Pittsburgh.
- In 2000, he came back to the NHL to play against the Toronto Maple Leafs. Though he played only in 43 games, he made 76 points which were the highest points-per-game average that season in the League.
- Lemieux was made the captain for 2001–02 season but he only played 24 games for two reasons viz he had suffered injuries and also wanted to stay in good shape to contest at Canada for Olympics.
- He was made the captain of Canada’s Winter Olympic team for the 2002 Salt Lake City Games.
- After a series of injuries troubling him and his career coupled with impoverishing condition of Penguins, Lemieux he took retirement on January 24, 2006.
- His records stand at 915 regular-season games played in which he scored 690 goals and assisted on 1,033 more for 1,723 points. With these numbers etched on his name, Mario Lemieux became one of the greatest players in history to play the game.
- In 1993, Lemieux got married to Nathalie Asselin and live in Pittsburgh suburb of Sewickley. The couple has four children: Lauren, Stephanie, Austin Nicholas, and Alexa.
- Lemieux started the Mario Lemieux Foundation in 1993 when he was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma. This program was kicked off to provide funds for medical research projects. He also co-founded ‘Athletes for Hope’, a charity organization for athletes.
Mario Lemieux Quotes
- Every day is a great day for hockey.
- Play without fear, and you will be successful.
- All I can say to the young players is, enjoy every moment of it. Just enjoy every moment of it. Your career goes by very quickly.
- One thing I hate is people screaming at me. If you want me to do something, talk to me. When someone screams at me to hurry up, I slow down.
- I think we have to show some pride in the jersey that we are wearing, and can’t quit.
- Since the beginning, I always loved the game. When you grow up in Montreal, one day you want to be a professional hockey player. When I was six or seven, I knew that was what I wanted.
- My body’s feeling it a little bit. But one good thing, my back is in good shape, and that’s my main concern. I know that my legs are going to take a while to get back to where I was a few years ago, but as long as my back is solid, I feel that I can play many years.
- For as long as I can remember I wanted to be a professional hockey player.
- I think that with a lot of hard work and dedication, I feel that I could be the best in the world. I’m still only 35 years old… I have a fresh start physically and mentally, and I feel that I can achieve my goal to be the best again.
- Everybody I talked to – from my friends to my family and some of the players – really gave me a lot of support from the start. And that certainly made me feel good about trying to come back and be one of the best again.
- Once I’m at the arena with the guys in the dressing room, and in the bus, and on the plane, I’m a player. And I sit in the back with the players and I play cards and try to take their money.
- I don’t order fries with my club sandwich.
- I didn’t like the way the game was being played.
- When someone screams at me to hurry up, I slow down.
- My son, he is the reason I got involved. It’s been a joy to be around him and teach him the stuff that I know, and to the other kids as well. When he started playing I wanted to be involved in his hockey career. It’s a lot of fun for both of us.
- I’m sorry I didn’t feel any better or play any better, but that’s what happens at the end of careers.
- Certainly, we’re not satisfied with just winning games. We’ve been playing some pretty good hockey, but we think we can play much better.
- I think the game has opened up, and that’s why I decided to come back and try to be a part of it.
- When it comes to hockey, it’s been in my blood since I was 3 or 4 years old. I love coaching the kids, especially at that level.
- I have two main reasons for retiring. The first is I can no longer play at a level I was accustomed to in the past. That has been very, very frustrating to me throughout this past year. The second one is realizing my health, along with my family, is the most important thing in the world.
- I’ve gone through back surgery a couple of times, and of course, my radiation treatments for six weeks got me to the point where I was not able to play at the level that I was accustomed to.
- I don’t try to match wine with food, I just drink what I like. And I think a lot of people are going towards that now, which never used to be in the past.
- Depending on how we start the season, I can play center or wing… It doesn’t matter to me.
- Since the beginning, I always loved the game.
- I think people in Montreal smoke a lot, and I used to smoke when I was 17-18, and just picked it up when I was playing juniors. But I think I stopped when I was 22, which was a big decision in my life.
Awards and Honours
- Mario Lemieux won the Calder Memorial Trophy as NHL Rookie of the Year in 1985.
- He was rewarded with Lester B. Pearson Award as Player of the Year in 1986 and 1988.
- He got Hockey League Players Association in 1993 and 1996.
- Lemieux bagged the Art Ross Trophy as NHL’s top scorer in 1988-89.
- He also got the Hart Trophy as NHL’s Most Valuable Player for 1988, 1993, and 1996.
- His other feat was Conn Smythe Trophy as Most Valuable Player in Playoffs in 1991-92.
- A great honor came his way when he got the Bill Masterton Trophy for NHL player who best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship, and dedication to hockey in 1993.
- He was inducted into Hockey Hall of Fame in 1997.
- He won the Olympic Gold Medal, hockey, Salt Lake City Winter Games in 2002.
- Lemieux has won the Art Ross Trophy 6 times in his career.
- Lemieux participated in the First All-Star Team Centre or Second All-Star Team Centre teams, between 1986 and 2001.
- He got the prestigious title of Knight from Quebec Premier Jean Charest.
- In 2010, he was honored with Order of Canada from then-Governor-General Michaëlle Jean.
- Canada Cup (1st, gold medallist) 1987
- Winter Olympic Games (1st, gold medallist) 2002
- World Cup of Hockey (1st, gold medallist) 2004