Longtime NHL winger René Robert died at the age of 72 on Tuesday.
The news comes days after Robert, 72, was admitted to a Florida hospital on Friday after suffering a heart attack.
A native of Trois-Rivières, Que., Robert had stints in Toronto and Pittsburgh before beginning his tenure with the Buffalo Sabres near the end of the 1971-72 season. In his first full year with the club the year after, he recorded 40 goals and 83 points, later topping that two seasons with a 100-point campaign.
Robert never failed to fall below the 62-point mark in seven complete seasons with the club, making up a spot of the famed “French Connection” line with fellow Quebecers Gilbert Perreault and Richard Martin. The line was one of the most deadly in the league at the time and a staple of Sabres legend.
“Kim and I were saddened to hear the devastating news of Rene Robert’s passing,” Sabres owner Tim Pegula said. “When we first took over as owners, the members of The French Connection were three of the first people to welcome us to the organization. During our time with the team, Rene has been one of the most active alumni and we’ve grown to know him well over the past 10 years. He was a friend to us and to the entire organization and will be missed dearly. Our thoughts and prayers are with Rene’s family during this difficult time.”
In 524 games with Buffalo, Robert had 222 goals and 552 points. He’d finish his NHL career with a two-year run with the Colorado Rockies before going full circle and finishing off with the Toronto Maple Leafs in 1982.