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[VIDÉO] Pull off the famous number 4: A touching encounter with Guy Lafleur

[VIDÉO] Pull off the famous number 4: A touching encounter with Guy Lafleur

Jay LaFleur received the final honor on Thursday when he saw his No. 4 jersey officially retired by QMJHL. Weak, sentimental and, above all, true to himself, the blond devil still refused to take all credit for the legacy he bequeathed to QMJHL.

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Ten former Lafleur teammates with Remparts were at the Videotron Center to witness this historic moment: André Savard, Michel Deguise, Richard Grenier, Bill Landers, Yves Lacrois, Yvon Blais, Réjean Giroux, Paul Dion, Michel Brière and Serge Gaudreault.

The gesture deeply affected Lafleur.

“Without them, I wouldn’t be here. Les Remparts was a team effort, and we were a family. There was a lot of pride and belonging. Today, to be able to do events like this and to find so many alumni who played with me that proves one thing…” He started before he suffocated him with ecstasy.

“The team is still standing,” he concluded, with tears in his eyes.

Several personalities including QMJHL President Gilles Courteau and Quebec Mayor Régis Labeaume among others paid sincere tribute to Guy Lafleur who witnessed his No. 4 withdrawn by QMJHL.

Stevens LeBlanc’s photo

Several personalities including QMJHL President Gilles Courteau and Quebec Mayor Régis Labeaume among others paid sincere tribute to Guy Lafleur who witnessed his No. 4 withdrawn by QMJHL.

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During the evening, the blond devil wiped some tears.

Stevens LeBlanc’s photo

During the evening, the blond devil wiped some tears.

The treatments that Laflore undergoes today greatly weaken him. Regardless, though: There was no way he could have missed Thursday night.

“It’s Guy LaFleur, it’s him. No more words,” said QMJHL Commissioner Gil Curto. In Gatineau a few weeks ago, he told me he would do everything he could with his medical team to be here. He even joked to me that if he had to come on A wheelchair, he would. For him, that was really important.”

Moreover, he acknowledged that the Wednesday on which the artwork in his portrait was unveiled in the Jean Bellevue Square, as well as Thursday evening, served as a balm in a difficult period.

“It changes the wrong place. It changes ideas. It is a kind of homecoming for me. We must never forget where we came from and we must never forget where we are going. For me, it is an honor to be here.”


Stevens LeBlanc’s photo

One thing is for sure: Although it has been more than 50 years since Guy Lafleur finished his apprenticeship with the Remparts, Quebec has not forgotten him. The crowd at the Videotron Center paid homage to him for about five minutes as he appeared on the rink in honor of which he had received.

On many occasions, fans chanted “Guy! Young! Young!” in the chorus.

Several figures then took up the microphone to pay tribute to him: from outgoing Mayor Regis Labomme to André Savard, via Prime Minister François Legault who recorded a video congratulating the new immortal for QMJHL.


Stevens LeBlanc’s photo

Patrick Roy also spoke and provided a delicious anecdote about the time when he rubbed shoulders with Guy LaFleur during their football careers.

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“I was 19 and it was my first time in the Canadian Forum locker room. I was a little freaked out and nervous. I’m going to sit in my locker […] My head was bent and I looked to my left and said to myself: “Tabarnak, it’s Jay Lafleur!” I bowed my head again and told myself I was no longer on my school bench! “

He later joked that LaFleur may have retired in 1984 after Roy returned to the rookie ranks because he “had no pleasure in throwing me in the face during training!” “.

“I was sure he would ask me for the bill,” he continued. The man returns with the New York Rangers and arrives at the Forum. Obviously, in the second half, Guy Lafleur scored two goals. I can tell you that that night, it wasn’t me who winked, it was Jay LaFleur who gave me one! ”

More than talent

Andre Savard, former teammate of Guy LaFleur

QMI’s photo, Sebastien St. Jean

Andre Savard, former teammate of Guy LaFleur

Andre Savard was at the forefront of Guy Lafleur’s exploits with Rempar de Québec. It affirms one thing: nothing he accomplished was successful without his talent. Savard was named among his ten former Lafleur teammates
To speak at a party yesterday. For him, there was no doubt about missing this moment.

“He was very important to me. He’s Jay Lafleur! We all followed his career after the Rimpar family and it’s a success story. He’s a great talent, Guy Lafleur, but you don’t become an idol just through talent. He’s a man of character, a determination and proud of being successful in front of his fans. To him, that was important. It’s not automatic that you become too old and too good. It’s perseverance, hard work, and a lot of pride.”

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Savard remembers well Lafleur’s influence on the city.

“In the media, Jay always had either his headline or subtitle in one of the three city newspapers. We were covered in newspapers like the Canadians and we were very popular because we had a big star and very good players.

“We started, there were 4,000 people in the stands and in the chain, there were 13,000 people sitting on the stairs. She sang and the atmosphere was extraordinary. Even after 50 years, these moments are still in the memory.”

Savard was also a key member of the 1971 winning version, didn’t struggle to play under No. 4, and reassured his teammate who asked him the question.

“I didn’t suffer at all, he was my right winger! We must not forget that in my 12-point game, I was playing with Guy Lafleur. You can take advantage of him when you play with him. We have to realize what he gave the team and we are behind him. It was extraordinary to experience what We lived it.”

The one who, among other things, served as general manager of Canadians for three seasons has made no secret of his grief over the state of health of Jay LaFleur.

“It’s sad that he’s going through this now. We don’t like him for anyone. There, it happens to Guy Lafleur. […] He didn’t have to be here, but that’s it, Guy. He gives back to those who love him. Tonight he gives back to the people who loved him. It’s a huge effort for him to be here. “