With thanks to Alanah at kuklaskorner.com for the link:
ESPN has cooked up a list of “100 players you love to hate” across many sports, categorized in many different ways, in no apparent order. Former Canadiens goalie André Racicot and current defenceman Patrice Brisebois both make the list which you’ll find in its entirety here.
Hockey’s list is about halfway down if you scroll. But below are the hockey players excerpted to save you the time of looking for them:
52. Alexei Yashin, Ottawa Senators and New York Islanders: First, fans in Ottawa started calling him “Alexei Cashin” after the Russian star sat out an entire season trying to get a raise. Eight years later, the Islanders soured on him so badly that they bought out his contract for nearly $18 million just to make him go away.
53. Andre Racicot, Montreal Canadiens: The former backup goalie for the Habs let in so many goals that fans stuck him with an unforgettable and unforgiving nickname: “Red Light Racicot.”
54. Patrice Brisebois, Montreal Canadiens: The most hated Hab of the past decade, Brisebois earned the moniker “Breeze-by” for his tendency to let opposing skaters breeze by him. After two years in Colorado, Brisebois inexplicably returned to Montreal for more abuse.
55. Larry Murphy, Toronto Maple Leafs: Traded to his hometown team in 1995, Murphy was the team’s highest-paid player and the scapegoat for the Leafs’ failures. Later traded to Detroit, he won two Stanley Cups with the Wings; on his first day with the Cup, Murphy brought it back to Toronto, deepening fans’ misery.
56. Nikolai Antropov, Toronto Maple Leafs: Leafs fans can’t decide what they hate most about Antropov — his constant injuries, his stork-on-ice skating, or the fact that Toronto just signed him to a two-year contract extension.
57. Eric Lindros, Philadelphia Flyers: The bruising center once dubbed “The Next One,” Lindros became hated by many Flyers fans for failing to live up to his potential after a series of injuries and concussions derailed his promising career. Lindros does garner sympathy in some corners, though, if only because the man he feuded with in Philly, Bobby Clarke, ranks as one of the most reviled executives in sports history.
58. Keith Primeau, Detroit Red Wings: A first-round pick who never lived up to the hype in Detroit, Primeau was another talented player criticized for being a poor skater. Many Wings fans see it as no coincidence that the team ended its 40-year championship drought after Primeau was traded for Brendan Shanahan.