Ex-NHL MVP Eric Lindros files defamation lawsuit against former ref

Thursday February 26th, 2015

Former NHL forward Eric Lindros has filed a lawsuit in Ontario Superior Court against former referee Paul Stewart, the Huffington Post, AOL Inc. and AOL Canada Inc., claiming that he was defamed in an article published last July 16.

According to the amended statement of claim filed on Nov. 24, Lindros says a Huffington Post story written by Stewart, entitled "Hecklers, Hooligans and the Striped-Shirted Maitre D" has false statements in it and was inaccurate and defamatory.

In the article, Stewart wrote that Lindros swore at him during the player's rookie season with the Philadelphia Flyers after the ref tried to talk to him during a delay in a game against the New Jersey Devils.

"Hey, Eric. How are things going? How's your dad?" Stewart asked.

"[Bleep] you. Just drop the [bleeping] puck already,” Lindros allegedly said.

Stewart wrote that he and Lindros “got off on the wrong foot" and described sending posters to the Flyers' equipment manager to be co-signed by Lindros after the game, intending to donate them to a charity auction. According to Stewart's story, when the Flyers star was told that the posters were from Stewart, he promptly ripped them up. Lindros denies in the lawsuit that he ripped up the posters.

In his amended claim, Lindros seeks $250,000 after originally seeking $3 million in damages.

Lindros, a seven-time All-Star, had 372 goals and 493 assists in 15 NHL seasons with the Flyers, New York Rangers, Toronto Maple Leafs and Dallas StarsHe won the Hart Trophy as the NHL’s Most Valuable Player in 1995, after scoring 50 goals and assisting on 71 others for the Flyers. Stewart officiated in 1,010 career NHL regular-season games until 2003.

- Scooby Axson

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