Report: First Overall NHL Draft Pick is Homeless Again After Earning $13 Million

joe murphy homeless

The number 1 pick in the 1986 NHL Draft is reportedly homeless for the second time in two years and is struggling with drug addiction.

Joe Murphy was the first overall pick by the Detroit Red Wings in the 1986 NHL Draft and a Stanley Cup champion with the Edmonton Oilers in 1990. He spent 15 seasons in the NHL with the Detroit Red Wings, Edmonton Oilers, Chicago Blackhawks, St. Louis Blues, San Jose Sharks, Boston Bruins and Washington Capitals from 1986 to 2001. Murphy earned more than $13 million in his career, but he is homeless in Kenora, Ontario, Canada again.

According to the Detroit Free Press, Murphy suffered several concussions during his career in the league. He was part of a lawsuit against the NHL that failed to get class-action status. The NHL announced a $19 million settlement in November 2018 for more than 300 retired hockey players for failing to protect them from head injuries and failing to warn them about the harmful effects. A player who agreed to a settlement could receive $22,000 and claim $75,000 in medical assistance. Murphy told the Free Press he refused because he does not want NHL doctors checking his health out.

Murphy has visited homeless shelters in Kenora, Ontario, and is suspected of using crystal meth, according to the Free Press. The 51-year-old center his adamant about not wanting help. He stayed at a motel paid for by the NHL Alumni Association for several months last winter and moved out. Glenn Healy, the executive director of the players’ union, and Adam Graves arranged the hotel for Murphy. Murphy said:

I didn’t ask them to help. They put me in a room and I said this room won’t work. It’s going to end in failure. 
I get into those situations and my head starts going and I don’t want any trouble to start. It’s not the shelters, it’s me. I like having the privacy. It’s my own fault.

What do you think is the root cause for Murphy's plight - Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE), mental health issues, or drug addiction? Comment below.