This morning the Maple Leafs announced that they will add three new alumni to their Legends Row outside the Air Canada Centre as part of the kick-off of events leading up to their 100th anniversary in 2017.
Tim Horton played for the Maple Leafs from 1949 to 1970, 21 years with the organization, winning four Stanley Cups with the team in the 1960's. As a defenseman he was known to be reliable, and hard to get through. Horton holds the club record for most consecutive games played, at 486 games from February 11, 1961, to February 4, 1968.
Hard working off the ice, he worked for Leafs owner Conn Smythe's gravel pits in the summer before taking a risk and opening up his first doughnut shop in 1964.
As George Armstrong, his Captain, would say of Tim Horton, "No finer person, teammate or hockey player has ever lived."
Horton was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1977 and his number 7 was honoured by the Maple Leafs in 1995.
Babcock: "Most of us celebrate Tim Horton everyday."— James Mirtle (@mirtle) January 21, 2016
Broad was awarded the Vezina trophy in 1941 and 1948. He also won the Calder trophy in 1938. He holds the record for most games played by a Maple Leafs goaltender, missing only four games in the seasons he played for the team, and still holds the record for most shutouts by a Maple Leafs goaltender with 62.
Broda was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1967, and his number 1 was honoured by the Maple Leafs in 1995 (alongside Johnny Bower).
Dave Keon is considered by many to be the greatest player to ever put on the Blue & White. A dynamic two-way centre, Dave Keon burst onto the Maple Leafs scene in 1960 in a Calder Trophy winning season, scoring 20 goals and 45 points. Keon won the Lady Byng in just his second season, after taking only one penalty.
He helped the Maple Leafs win Stanley Cups in 1962, 63, 64, and 1967 and was named playoff MVP in '67, awarded the Conn Smythe trophy for his efforts -- the only Maple Leaf to win the award.
Keon was consistently the Leafs top player, top goal scorer, and top points getter in his time with the team. A few years after being the playoff hero, Leafs owner Harrold Ballard would use Keon as a public scapegoat for the Leafs misfortunes. Ballard refused to resign the 35-year-old in 1975, saying any team could sign him but demanded huge compensation for doing so. Keon would sign with the WHA's Minnesota Fighting Saints before bouncing around the WHA (mostly due to team instability) and returning to the NHL in Hartford, where he played until his retirement in 1982.
Dave Keon has had little to do with the Maple Leafs since he left in 1975. He refused to have anything to do with the club while under Ballards ownership, and told the Toronto Sun in 2005 "that the new owners (majority equity owned by the Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan, chaired by Larry Tanenbaum) would like to say they are different, but they are all the same."
Keon has appeared at three pre-game ceremonies at the Air Canada Centre recently, when the '63 and '64 Stanley Cup winning teams were honoured. Keon has in the past turned down attending a ceremony to have his number 14 honoured by the team as well.
With the announcement of his addition to Legends Row, and his commitment to attend Saturday Night's pre-game ceremonies to honour the new additions, could the relationship between the team and Keon be warming? It would be great for both parties, and the fans, if it's true.
"I always believed Legends Row would not be complete without Dave Keon." - Darryl Sittler on Keon and the Leafs settling differences.— Lance Hornby (@sunhornby) January 21, 2016
Details for the Legends Row statue unveiling ceremonies, to be held in October to open the Toronto Maple Leafs 2016-17 Centennial Season, will be announced this summer.