Borje Salming's True Legacy

From Today's Toronto Star

When the fearless Swede pulled on a Leafs sweater in 1973, he changed the NHL forever

The banner, bearing Borje Salming’s battle-worn visage and his No.21, will inch skyward into the rafters of the Air Canada Centre tonight. There amongst the icons, along with fellow newcomers Red Kelly and Hap Day, Salming will have a place of permanence, well- and hard-earned after 16 stellar years on the Toronto

For his legacy, however, look down, not up. On the ice will be two Swedish captains - Mats Sundin of the Leafs and Ottawa’s
Daniel Alfredsson - an unheard of possibility when the shy kid from inside the Arctic Circle packed up his reindeer-patterned sweaters in Kiruna and changed the face of professional hockey.

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The Leafs will also honour Hap Day

Seven Stanley Cups and a Hall of Fame induction later, the Toronto Maple Leafs are finally going to honour a man who should have been honoured long ago.

The Leafs will raise Clarence (Hap) Day's No. 4 to the Air Canada Centre roof, 16 years after the St. Thomas resident's death.

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and Red Kelly

“When I arrived in Toronto, Punch and I talked things over. He asked me how I would feel about playing defence. I said fine. If I made a mistake, I’d still have players behind me. He told me the road to the Stanley Cup leads through Montreal and he wanted me to check Jean Beliveau.”

“I remember 1967 because we could have had another five Cups in a row,” recalled Beliveau. “Punch moved Red up to forward and he had a great playoff. I admired Red for his great talent, but I had the occasion to meet him and he’s always been more than a gentleman.”

Kelly would play never play defence again.

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