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  • Writer's pictureDerek Ochej

The Golden Brett

Card 464 - Brett Hull

The son of the legendary Bobby Hull, right winger Brett was drafted 117th overall by Calgary in 1984. A goal scorer like his father, Brett scored 105 goals in 56 games for Penticton in the BCHL the year of his draft. Following the draft he played two seasons at the University of Minnesota-Duluth, scoring 52 goals in 42 games and earning a Hobey Baker Award nomination. Hull turned pro following the conclusion of the college season, playing in two playoff games for the Flames.

In his first full pro season of 1986-87 Hull scored 50 goals in 67 games with Moncton in the AHL, winning the rookie of the year award while also playing in five games for the Flames. In March 1988 Hull was traded to St. Louis with Steve Bozek for Rob Ramage and Rick Wamsley as the Flames sought more defensive proficiency for a team on the precipice of winning a Stanley Cup. Split between the Flames and Blues, Hull scored 32 goals and 63 points, finishing fifth in Calder Trophy voting.

With the Blues Hull’s game blossomed, scoring 41 goals and 84 points in his first full season, followed by a jump to 72 goals and 113 points in 1989-90. In addition to leading the NHL in goals that season, Hull also led the league in even strength, power play and game winning goals, as well as shots. He was named a first team all-star, won the Lady Byng and finished third in Hart voting. Hull outdid himself the next season, scoring 86 goals (the second highest total of all time for a single season) and 131 points. Again he was named a first team all-star, won both the Hart Trophy and Pearson Award and was runner up for the Lady Byng. In 1991-92 he led the league in goals for a third straight season with 70, as well as in even strength goals and shots.

Hull’s number naturally dipped following this three year span of other-worldly production, but he still managed back-to-back 50 goals season (54 and 57) and eclipsed 100 points for a fourth straight season in 1992-93. During this time the Blues did not advance beyond the Division Finals/Conference Semi-Finals, in spite of Hull averaging just under a goal per game pace in the 1990 and 1991 playoffs (13 and 11 goals). Following the lockout shortened 1994-95 season, Hull put up seasons of 42 and 32 goals, representing eight straight seasons of 40 or more goals scored, minus the lockout season. 1997-98 was Hull’s final season with the Blues, scoring a career-low 27 goals.

In July 1998 he signed with Dallas as a free agent. In his first season as a Star he scored 32 goals and 58 points, leading the league with 11 game winning goals. More importantly, Hull won his first Stanley Cup, scoring eight goals and 15 points while scoring the most controversial Cup-winning goal in history against Buffalo in triple overtime of Game 6. The following season his regular season goal total dipped to 24, but he led the playoffs in goals (11) and points (24) along with even strength goals, game winning goals and shots. The Stars would lose in the Finals to New Jersey that season. 2000-01 was Hull’s last season in Dallas, scoring 39 goals and 79 points while finishing fourth in Byng Trophy voting.

Hull moved to Detroit in August 2001 with Detroit, scoring 33 goals in his first season and adding 10 goals in the playoffs as he won his second career Stanley Cup. He played two more seasons with Detroit, then signed with Phoenix following the 2004-05 lockout. Hull lasted five games with the Coyotes before retiring.

In 19 NHL seasons Hull played in 1269 games, scoring 741 goals (fifth all-time), 1391 points (25th all-time). He also ranks seventh all-time in even strength goals (456), third in power play goals (265), fifth in game winning goals (110), tenth in shots (4876) and fourth in hat tricks (33). Behind all of those statistics Hull is arguably one of the greatest pure goal scorers in NHL history, and was recognized as such by being named to the United States Hockey Hall of Fame in 2008 and Hockey Hall of Fame in 2009. Hull also played in eight all-star games.

From 2006-2011 he worked for his former team in Dallas, including as co-GM with Les Jackson from 2007 to 2009. From 2013 to 2018 he worked as the executive vice-president of hockey operations with the Blues and has since worked various business opportunities. A captain with the Blues from 1992 to 1995, Hull’s number was retired in 2006 by St. Louis.

YouTube clip: Hull's video from being named one of the NHL's Top 100 players.

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