Chicago Blackhawks Throwback Thursday- Tom Lysiak

By Keith Schultz

Chicago Blackhawks Throwback Thursday Takes a look back at some of the Chicago Blackhawks All-Time Greats, and some colorful players that have made the franchise great for 80 plus seasons. 

I was going through my pictures of former Chicago Blackhawks and I saw this picture of a hockey card of Tom Lysiak and posted it on Twitter today.

Lysiak was a name you heard a lot from during the 1980’s if you were like me listening to Chicago Blackhawks radio broadcasts of Pat Foley because he was a very consistent scorer.

Lysiak was a very consistent scorer from the time he took the NHL ice, as a rookie with the Atlanta Flames he scored 19 times and collected 45 assists and came in 2nd in the Calder trophy voting losing out to Denis Potvin of the New York Islanders who had 10 less points than Lysiak.

Lysiak played for the Flames for the rest of the 70’s never scoring less than 23 goals while hitting a high of 31 goals in 1976.  His stats with the Flames mirror a lot of a young Patrick Kane‘s minus all of the Stanley Cup Playoff magic that #88 has had throughout his career.   Lysiak made the playoffs but the Flames never won a series in Atlanta.

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In 1979 the Chicago Blackhawks and the Atlanta Flames made a trade. Tom Lysiak was traded to Chicago by Atlanta with Pat Ribble, Greg Fox, Harold Phillipoff and Miles Zaharko for Ivan Boldirev, Phil Russell and Darcy Rota, March 13, 1979.

Lysiak continued to score goals on a consistent basis, but he wasn’t the top dog on the team playing on secondary lines behind Denis Savard and Steve Larmer.

Of course, you can’t tell the story of Lysiak without mentioning what happened on October 30, 1983 when he tripped referee Ron Francis and ended up serving the longest suspension ever handed out by the NHL at the time of 20 games.

The curse of Lysiak has died down since the Chicago Blackhawks current core has won 3 Stanley Cups in the past 7 seasons, but there for a time many believed the NHL and the NHL referees for a long time were out to get the Chicago Blackhawks and give them extra penalty minutes in big spots due to the Lysiak trip.

1982 was the best season for Lysiak in Chicago. He picked up 82 points throughout the year and helped lead the Chicago Blackhawks to the Conference Finals where they lost to the Vancouver Canucks.  In the playoffs, Lysiak had his best playoff season with 6 goals and 9 assists.

Lysiak wasn’t my favorite player growing up, but he played in a lot of games in that very good 80’s era where they just couldn’t get to the Stanley Cup Finals.

Next: Blackhawks Goalie Problems Brewing

What is your memory of Lysiak?