ST. LOUIS It was a perfect father son moment.
Brett Hull had just finished playing for the St. Louis Blues in the 2017 Winter Classic alumni game against the Chicago Blackhawkson Saturday at Busch Stadium, and he was sitting in the Cardinals clubhouse when his legendary father, Bobby, walked in.
Bobby Hull shuffled over, sat down and quickly began to hold court. It didn’t take long for Wayne Gretzky, Chris Pronger and Adam Oates to come over and shake hands with the former member of the Blackhawks, Winnipeg Jets and Hartford Whalers.
It also turned into the perfect opportunity for an impromptu Q with Brett and Bobby Hull. But if I was in game shape, it’s just hockey. If you’re good at all, you can play, right? So I think I’d be all right. Would I get 80 goals? Doubt it. Fantastic. They are so fast and skilled. Like, I’ve been watching the World Juniors, and those guys on Team USA, they are so fast, so skilled. It’s unbelievable. What was the best trash line?
Brett Hull: Oh, there’s too many. There were one a shift, two a shift, and I think someone got yelled at for doing the mannequin challenge out there. We’re all friends now and appreciate the battles that we had with one another. Once you retire, [the animosity] is gone. With the [current] players, it’s real.
This is when Hull’s father walked over and sat down. It’s a young man’s game. I’ll be 78 in two days, or three days, on Jan. 3. I’ll accept cards and letters. But where has the time gone? I remember the first 40 years of my life, but this last 40, I don’t know if I’ve accomplished anything. It would be nice to know if I have, I don’t know [laughs]. All I know is it’s still fun to watch hockey played the way it should be played. 91 [Vladimir Tarasenko of the Blues], and I said, ‘If Chicago had you or if you had the Bread Man [Artemi Panarin], it would be a pretty good team.’ No, it’s great. It’s great that good, young players are coming along like that to entertain you. That’s what we need. We need guys like these future Hall of Famers in the game today. Grab that biscuit, and do something with it. Entertain the people.
Bobby Hull: No. Wayne was a fabulous player to set them up; Brett would finish it off. My dad used to say when I’d get an assist, ‘Anyone can get an assist. It takes someone to score a goal.’
Bobby Hull: I was never injured. Just feelings, mostly [laughs]. I had bruised feelings to think that Bugsy [Bryan] Watson [was] out there just to prevent me from entertaining the people. That bothered me. Then when I clubbed him cheap hockey jerseys
in the head for 35 stitches, he said, ‘Bobby, I never thought that of you.’ I went right over to the Detroit bench, and [Gordie] Howe, [Alex] Delvecchio and all of them were sitting, and I went over, and I stuck my head over the boards, and I said, ‘The blood is on your hands.’ And that’s what bothered me: that I was not allowed to entertain the people. That’s what bothered me the most because I knew what I was out there for: to entertain. I always said I played for [many] reasons: To make a boyhood dream come true to play in the NHL, which I dreamed about all my life. To entertain you people royally, and I hope I did, and to work up a thirst so I could drink beer and chase girls maybe not in that order.