The Malik Report
by George Malik on 06/10/13 at 01:49 PM ET
Somehow, this doesn't surprise me, per the Detroit Free Press:
When it comes to holding a grudge, the Turtle is at the top of the Detroit sports fans’ list.
Former NHL forward Claude Lemieux, who played with, among others, the New Jersey Devils and the Colorado Avalanche, beat out his former teammate, Patrick Roy, in our online voting tournament to “crown” the most hated opposing athlete in Michigan.
Lemieux garnered just over 75% of more than 2,230 votes. He is perhaps most notorious around these parts for this cross-check in the 1996 Western Conference finals that literally rearranged Kris Draper’s face.
Of course, Wings fans won’t forget March 26, 1997, when Darren McCarty exacted revenge on Lemieux, pummeling him on the ice and leaving him with no recourse but to cover up for dear life.
To be fair, he wasn’t just some slug on the ice. He’s a four-time Stanley Cup champion and was the Conn Smythe Winner in 1995, when the Devils swept the Wings in the finals, probably the beginning of Detroit’s “love affair” with him. He scored 80 playoff goals, ninth-most in NHL history.
Lemieux beat out another ex-teammate, Peter Forsberg, along with Scottie Pippen and Ron Artest (Metta World Peace) on his way to the dubious title.
The Free Press had listed 7 hockey players out of the 24 athletes that were named as "most hated" contenders, and the other 3 hockey players were Peter Forsberg, Patrick Roy, Shea Weber, Chris Pronger and Sidney Crosby.
Roy, Lemieux, Forsberg and Artest were the semifinalists.
The Free Press is now asking fans to weigh in on a bracketed slate of athletes they admired despite playing for opposing teams, and Joe Sakic, Teemu Selanne and Bobby Hull are the hockey players on their list.
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The Malik Report is a destination for all things Red Wings-related. I offer biased, perhaps unprofessional-at-times and verbose coverage of my favorite team, their prospects and developmental affiliates. I've joined the Kukla's Korner family with five years of blogging under my belt, and I hope you'll find almost everything you need to follow your Red Wings at a place where all opinions are created equal and we're all friends, talking about hockey and the team we love to follow.