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Islanders Hall of Famer Mike Bossy reveals he's battling lung cancer

Islanders legend and Hockey Hall of Famer Mike

Islanders legend and Hockey Hall of Famer Mike Bossy revealed he is battling lung cancer and is stepping away from being a TV analyst. Credit: Jim McIsaac

CHICAGO — Mike Bossy is battling lung cancer, the Islanders’ Hall of Famer revealed on Tuesday in explaining his decision to step away from his television career.

TVA Sports, a French-language Canadian network, released an open letter from the Montreal-born Bossy to address his recent on-air absence.

"Today, it is with great sorrow that I must retire from your screens for an obligatory break," Bossy wrote as translated to English by Google. "A necessary stop during which I will have to receive treatment for lung cancer.

"I can assure you that I intend to fight with all the determination and all the ardor that you have seen me display on the ice and in my game," Bossy continued. "That same determination that has helped me achieve my dreams and…propelled me to the top of my sport."

Bossy, 64, joined TVA Sports in 2015 as an analyst after previously working for MSG Networks.

The Islanders selected Bossy 15th overall in 1977 and he went on to score a franchise-record 573 goals with 553 assists, the third most in team history, in 752 NHL regular-season games between 1977-87 before back issues prematurely curtailed his career.

He scored at least 51 goals in each of his first nine NHL seasons, becoming the second NHL player to notch 50 goals in 50 games in 1981. The Islanders won four straight Stanley Cups from 1980-83 and Bossy was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1991.

"The battle I am about to wage will not be easy," Bossy wrote. "Know that I will give it my 100%, nothing less, with the objective of meeting you again soon.

"Like the athletes who are about to deliver the performance of their lives, I will need all of my strength and focus. Surrounded by my family and friends, I want to preserve this sacred and peaceful space, away from cameras and interviews."

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