Played In Stanley Cup Finals
During the 1996-97 season, Lindros had seventy-nine points in fifty-two games, another career high. Though he did not get along with his coach, Terry Murray, Lindros and the Flyers made it to the Stanley Cup finals. Philadelphia struggled defensively. The team was swept in four games by the Detroit Red Wings, and Lindros did not play as well again. Murray was fired, and Lindros shouldered some of the blame.
Lindros was also accused of not playing well at the World Cup games, where Canada lost to the United States in 1996. While he was captain of the 1998 Canadian Olympic team, one favored to win the gold, the Canadians did not medal at all. Again, Lindros was accused of not being the leader he could be. The 1997-98 NHL season was also a struggle for Lindros. He missed eighteen games because of a concussion, and only had seventy-one points. In the 1998 playoffs, the Flyers were eliminated in the first round by the Buffalo Sabres in five games. Lindros only scored one goal and two assists in the series.
While Lindros took the blame for the playoffs, the Flyers struggles were not all because of Lindros. Yet his injuries and high profile leadership position put a strain on his relationship with Flyers GM Bobby Clarke. As a restricted free agent, Lindros further enraged the team by spurning the team's offer of a five-year $42 million deal, and only taking a one-year contract extension that took him through 1999-2000. Beginning in the 1998-99 season, Lindros and Clarke traded shots in the press.
Lindros began the 1998-99 season by playing well, and very physical. Yet he played a cleaner game with fewer retaliatory penalties. He did have a major concussion in January, 1999, which knocked him out. While the Flyers were pushing for a playoff spot, Lindros struggled as a player before suffering a bizarre injury. During a game against the Nashville Predators on April 1, 1999, Lindros suffered a collapsed lung, and nearly died from blood seeping into his chest cavity. Because of his injury, he was unavailable for the playoffs and the team again lost in the first round. This was again seen as Lindros's fault, and there was talk of trading him.
- Eric Lindros - Concussion Problems
- Eric Lindros - Related Biography: President And General Manager Bobby Clarke
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