Ted Lindsay on Howe: ‘Greatest player that ever played’

Ted Kulfan
The Detroit News
"Production Line" revisited with Ted Lindsay, Sid Abel and Gordie Howe in 1980.

Detroit — The news of Gordie Howe’s death only compounded what was already shaping to be a dreary day for Ted Lindsay.

Lindsay was spending most of the day Friday at the hospital with his wife Joanne, who was undergoing chemotherapy treatment.

Lindsay, 90, was in the waiting room for an update on his wife.

“I’m a believer,” Lindsay said. “My wife, that’s who I’m thinking about.”

But Lindsay also had a moment to reminisce about his former teammate Howe, who died Friday morning at the age of 88.

The last time Lindsay really talked to Howe, said Linday, was about three years ago.

And there’s a reason when Lindsay says that.

Red Wings mourn loss of 'Mr. Hockey'

“The last few years, that wasn’t Gordie, that wasn’t him,” said Lindsay, of Howe’s dementia. “It was about three years ago when I remember talking to him.

“It was Gordie.”

The line of Sid Abel, Lindsay and Howe was one of the most productive and well-known trios in NHL history, nicknamed the ‘Production Line.’

The line had skill, toughness, grit and goal-scoring ability, nearly every hockey component a coach or scout would want.

As for Howe, specifically, Lindsay left no doubt Friday morning, while remembering his friend and teammate.

“The greatest player that ever played,” Lindsay said. “He was the best out of all of them. No one better.”


Twitter: @tkulfan

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