Saturday, January 1, 2011
The Greatest Maple Leafs Defensemen of All Time
The boys in blue and white continue to falter as they look headed to another missed post season unless they somehow can turn it around. A new year is upon us once again and I though it would better to have my first blog of 2011 take a look at some better moments and memories in Leafs history, so hear goes Leafs Nation as we take a stab at the Greatest Toronto Maple Leafs defensemen of all time and dont forget to let me know who you think is the greatest in our poll at the end.
The 9 Greatest Leafs Defensemen
Legend: GP- Games Played, G- Goals, A- Assists, PTS- Points
Regular Season Leaf Stats: GP- 1,185 G- 109 A- 349 PTS- 458
Playoff Season Leaf Stats: GP- 97 G- 9 A- 32 PTS- 41
Horton was considered the most revered defensemen of his time and seemed invincible on the ice, he was a three time first team all star and three time second team all star, Horton would win four Stanley Cups and his name will live on thanks to the very popular donut and coffee chain we all love.
Elected into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1977
Regular Season Leaf Stats: GP- 1,099 G- 148 A- 620 PTS- 768
Playoff Season Leaf Stats: GP- 81 G- 12 A- 37 PTS- 49
Salming is a national hero in his native Sweden and his brilliance led to a rebirth of great hockey in Toronto. Salming was named a one time first team all star, five time second team and is said to have opened the floodgates to the NHL for Europeans. He still holds the clubs record for all time regular season assists.
Elected into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1996
Regular Season Leaf Stats: GP- 476 G- 62 A- 99 PTS- 161
Playoff Season Leaf Stats: GP- 45 G- 4 A- 7 PTS- 11
Day was a steady Leafs blueliner and captured one Stanley Cup with the club in 1932. Day who's real name was Clarence was nicknamed Happy due to his positive outlook and he also went on to coach the club to five Stanley Cups.
Elected into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1961
Regular Season Leaf Stats: GP- 286 G- 52 A- 78 PTS- 130
Playoff Season Leaf Stats: GP- 37 G- 6 A- 6 PTS- 12
Clancy was purchased in 1930 for $35,000 cash and two players from Ottawa by Conn Smythe. The courageous blueliner was part of one Stanley Cup in 1932 and has an NHL Trophy named in his honour representing leadership qualities on and off the ice to the best player who exemplifies this. Clancy will also be remembered for sitting at the bunker during Leafs games with former owner Harold Ballard at MLG.
Elected into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1958
Regular Season Leaf Stats: GP- 633 G- 47 A- 186 PTS- 233
Playoff Season Leaf Stats: GP- 82 G- 4 A- 27 PTS- 31
Stanley was a member of four Stanley Cups with the club and named a second team all star on three occasions. Stanley was one of the Leafs better defensive defensemen and use to also take draws for the club in the defensive zone.
Elected into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1981
Regular Season Leaf Stats: GP- 490 G- 42 A- 110 PTS- 152
Playoff Season Leaf Stats: GP- 71 G- 7 A- 10 PTS- 17
Horner was a member of the 1932 Stanley Cup winner and led the NHL in penalty minutes for eight straight seasons, the tough as nails player will always be remembered for going after Bruin Eddie Shore after the hit that ended Ace Bailey's hockey career.
Elected into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1965
Regular Season Leaf Stats: GP- 473 G- 19 A- 136 PTS- 155
Playoff Season Leaf Stats: GP- 63 G- 3 A- 15 PTS- 18
Brewer a member of three Stanley Cup winners was an excellent athlete and was even offered a baseball contract by the Cleveland Indians. Brewer was a one time first team all star and a two time second team all star. Brewer once broke the jaws of two Bruins players with thunderous hits in the same game.
Regular Season Leaf Stats: GP- 580 G- 94 A- 320 PTS- 414
Playoff Season Leaf Stats: GP- 55 G- 13 A- 32 PTS- 45
Turnbull still holds the club record for most goals in a season with 22 by a blueliner and most points with 79. Turnbull recorded 50 or more points on five occasions. Turnbull will be best remembered for a five goal performance against the Wings back in 1977.
Regular Season Leaf Stats: GP- 181 G- 52 A- 108 PTS- 160
Playoff Season Leaf Stats: GP- 24 G- 3 A- 9 PTS- 12
Pratt had a short but memorable stay as a member of the Leafs, he won the Stanley Cup with the club in 1945 and was named a one time first team all star and one time second team all star as a member of the club. He is only one of two Leafs to win the Hart Trophy doing so in 1944. Pratt and the team soured after a contract dispute and he was sent packing to Boston in 1946.
Elected into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1966
Honourable mentions goes out to Tomas Kaberle, Bill Barilko, Bobby Baun, Bryan McCabe, Al Iafrate and Wally Stanowski.
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