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March 12, 2019

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Rangers great Howell dies

Hockey Hall of Famer Harry Howell, who was the last to win the Norris Trophy as National Hockey League’s top defenseman before the Bobby Orr era began, has died. He was 86. Canada’s Howell spent 17 years on the New York Rangers’ blue line from 1953 to 1969. “One of the most iconic players in franchise history, Harry’s Hall of Fame accomplishments on the ice were exceeded only by the tremendous gentleman he was off the ice,” said Rangers president Glen Sather. Howell competed in an era where the role of the defenseman changed from a conservative stay-at-home blueliner to an attacking force that provided support for the forwards and scored the odd goal when needed. Boston Bruins slick-skating Orr had plenty to do with that transformation. A seven-time all-star, Howell won the Norris Trophy in 1967 and Orr won it the next eight seasons. Howell played almost 20 seasons with the Rangers and appeared in 1,411 career NHL games. He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1979.


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