Hockey Hall of Famer Mike Bossy diagnosed with lung cancer

New York Islanders legend Mike Bossy is honoured before a game against the Boston Bruins. (Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports)
Islanders icon Mike Bossy announced he is battling cancer. (Getty) (USA Today Sports)

New York Islanders legend and Hockey Hall of Famer Mike Bossy has been diagnosed with lung cancer.

The 64-year-old made the announcement in a letter on TVA Sports, saying he will be stepping away from his role as an analyst on the network.

"Today it is with sadness that I must retire from your screens for a mandatory break," Bossy wrote, translated by "A necessary break during which I will have to receive treatment for lung cancer.

"I can tell you that I intend to fight with the determination and the enthusiasm that you have seen me display on the ice and in my game. That same determination that helped me achieve my dreams and my goals, the one that propelled me to the top of my sport when I was still playing."

Bossy was one of the driving forces of the Islanders' success in the 1980s, helping the team to an impressive four consecutive Stanley Cups from 1980-83. He scored 573 goals and added 553 assists during his 10 NHL seasons, all of which came with the Islanders.

The Montreal native broke into the NHL in 1977 and won the Calder Trophy as the league's top rookie thanks to a 91-point season. That marked the beginning of a run of an NHL-record nine straight 50-goal seasons.

A chronic back issue forced Bossy to retire after the 1986-87 season at the age of 30, but even though his career was cut short, he remains atop the franchise leaderboard in goals scored. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1991.

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