We just heard that legendary enforcer Bob Probert passed away today at age 45. In a brief statement provided by a Probert family spokesman, it was stated that Probert was on his boat Lake St. Clair with his family, including his children and in-laws, when he began experiencing serious chest pains. By the time they reached Windsor Regional Hospital, Probert was absent of vital signs. An autopsy is planned to determine the cause of death.
In 16 NHL seasons, Probert earned 3,300 penalty minutes (fourth on the NHL’s all-time list) in 935 regular season games and participated in 233 hockey fights. He accumulated over 40 points with his first season with the Blackhawks but from then on, his points production and penalty minutes gradually decreased.
During the remainder of this time with the blackhawks While he never reached the levels of point production that he achieved while with the Detroit Red Wings however he remained a dominant physical force on the ice and continued to battle many long-term rivalries with other enforcers like Tie Domi (see high light video below). Probert saw it as his job to protect his teammates.
After the 2001–02 season, Probert was placed on waivers by Chicago. No other team picked him up so he was advised that his role with the Blackhawks would be limited, or even relegated to playing in the minor leagues again. On November 16, 2002, Probert opted to “unofficially” retire so that he could join the Blackhawks radio broadcasting team. during the 2002/03 off season, Probert officially announced his retirement.
Probert will always remain in NHL history as one of the dominant team enforcers.