As part of the NHL Centennial Celebration, renowned Canadian artist Tony Harris will paint original portraits of each of the 100 Greatest NHL Players presented by Molson Canadian as chosen by a Blue Ribbon panel. NHL.com will reveal two portraits each Monday in 2017.
This week, the portraits of New York Islanders legend Mike Bossy, who won the Stanley Cup four times, and forward Eric Lindros are unveiled in the 12th installment.
Bossy, who scored 573 goals in 10 seasons, is the only player in the history of the NHL with nine straight 50-goal seasons.
In his NHL100 bio on Bossy, author Stu Hackel describes him as a phantom.
"He'd just vanish while his New York Islanders teammates moved the puck up ice and around the offensive zone. Then, seemingly out of nowhere, he'd materialize with no enemy checker near him just as a pass would arrive on the blade of his stick.
"That wasn't the extent of his magic, however, because Bossy's hands were quicker than your eyes -- or those of the opposing goalie. He'd propel the puck goalward instantaneously, so quickly that the movements of his arms and wrists were impossible to detect.
"Or Bossy would be carrying the puck, closing in on a backskating defenseman who was intent on preventing both the puck and the right wing from advancing anywhere near the goal. The defenseman was sure he had his prey lined up for a rough ride when suddenly -- poof! -- Bossy was gone and so was the puck. Then -- boom! -- they were behind their hunter with only the goalie in front of them, and you knew what would happen next."
Harris said when it came to painting Bossy, he thought of him as a shark.
"The Islanders were hard to ignore in the late '70s and early '80s. Four Stanley Cups and Mike Bossy scoring goals at a record pace made them stand out," Harris said. "His skill was undeniable and he had great anticipation, like a shark waiting to attack. I hoped to capture this aspect of his game: ready to be in the right place at the right time en route to yet another 50-goal season."
Lindros, who played with four teams during his 13-season career, is best known for being captain of the Philadelphia Flyers and centering John LeClair and Mikael Renberg on the "Legion of Doom" line in the late 1990s. Lindros never won a Stanley Cup, but took the Flyers to the Final in 1997, leading all players with 26 points in 19 games. He won the Hart Trophy as the NHL's most valuable player in 1994-95.
In his NHL100 profile, NHL.com Columnist Nick Cotsonika wrote of Lindros' love of the game and his dominance when healthy.
"When he was healthy, happy and humming, Lindros was a dominant force. He had the skill of a small man but stood 6-feet-4, weighed 240 pounds and powered through opponents with a mean streak.
"From the time he broke into the NHL with the Philadelphia Flyers in 1992-93 to his final season with them in 1999-2000, he averaged 1.36 points per game. Only Mario Lemieux (2.11) and Jaromir Jagr (1.45) averaged more.
Harris said Lindros reminded him of a freight train.
"To me, Eric Lindros was a skill player trapped in a 'power forward' body," Harris said. "He would crush a defender behind the net, then in the same breath feather a pass to LeClair in front for a goal," Harris said. "He was a freight train with touch. In my painting of No. 88, I focused on the freight train. Big, strong, fast, barreling down on the opposition's net!"