Surprise! Maple Leafs Retire 11 New Numbers

Prior to yesterday's home opener against the Boston Bruins, the Toronto Maple Leafs had only retired two numbers:

  • #5 for Bill Barilko
  • #6 for Ace Bailey

The number of retired numbers has now bloomed to 13 with the following additions:

  • #1 for Johnny Bower and Turk Broda
  • #4 for Hap Day and Red Kelly
  • #7 for Tim Horton and King Clancy
  • #9 for Charlie Conacher and Ted Kennedy
  • #10 for Syl Apps and George Armstrong
  • #13 for Mats Sundin
  • #14 for Dave Keon
  • #17 for Wendel Clark
  • #21 for Borje Salming
  • #27 for Frank Mahovlich and Daryl Sittler
  • #93 for Doug Gilmour

Only one current Leaf had to switch numbers to make this possible, so James van Riemsdyk scored his goal last night as #25 instead of his old #21.

Here's the excellent ceremony you likely missed because you were busy being frustrated by the Jays game. It gives you a chance to hear the Leafs' new PA Announcer Mike Ross as well.


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Comments (12 - click here to join in!)

Rob J

Let's be reasonable here. Only 6 or 7 of these players are retired-number-worthy.

October 16, 2016 @ 3:42 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

@Rob J

Nobody is suggesting Wendel belongs in the Hockey Hall of Fame. This isn't about that. This is about what these players mean to the Leafs and Leafs fans.

So if I look at the players I saw play (Mats Sundin, Wendel Clark, Borje Salming and Doug Gilmour), I'm okay with it. All four were special Leafs these past 35 years.

October 16, 2016 @ 7:00 PM

Rob J

I guess I never really 'got' the Leafs, so by extension, these types of ceremonies go right over my head.

October 16, 2016 @ 8:53 PM


Scott Eric

Did the ACC get another new video screen?

October 17, 2016 @ 12:32 PM

Argie

I've been a life-long Leaf fan and I always get my back up when people criticize the club (especially when it comes from a Habs fan) BUT this was nonsense. Retiring 16 numbers??? My two favorite Leafs of all time, Sundin & Salming I can see but Wendel Clark. What the hell?

As if it wasn't bad enough that they produced a list of the 100 greatest Leafs. A list that included the aforementioned, Mr Clark, Tiger Williams and Tie Domi. I have to ask, how come John Kordic and Jim Korn not on it?

As a Leaf fan, I'm hanging my head in shame.

October 17, 2016 @ 3:00 PM

Rob J

@TM,
When the Stars were killing it in 1999, the fans would chant "Eddie's Better" in order to annoy Patrick Roy. Many though they were saying "Eddie Vedder"

October 17, 2016 @ 3:17 PM

mrmojorisinca

I think this is awesome!! sound track makes its very special :)
Argie, you think Clark is in the same category as Domi?

October 17, 2016 @ 3:41 PM

Justin

@Argie

Wendel Clark is arguably the most popular Leafs player in history. His era pre-dates mind but there's a certain generation of Leafs fans that will always see him as #1 in popularity. The fact that he was our #1 overall pick, captained the team for years, led us during our best post-1967 era, and continues to hang around as a big part of the Leafs community is huge. I have no issue with it whatsoever, he's a Toronto hero.

Tiger Williams wasn't a scorer but was damn good in his role. It's not a stretch to deem him the best enforcer that ever played the game considering how much of a heavyweight he was on the ice and how much he scored as well. Tie Domi was also one of the best fighters of his era, and a HUGE fan favourite. He meant way more to this city than half the players on the list. When you think of the 1995-2005 Leafs, you think Sundin, Cujo, Belfour, and Domi. He should absolutely be on there.
Drawing a parallel between the prominence of Domi and Kordic/Korn is absolutely insane.

October 17, 2016 @ 6:00 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

@Justin

If all goes according to plan, I'll be skating with Wendel Clark this Friday at Maple Leaf Gardens.

He's from my era and I love him as a player. I'm not delusional, in that I don't think he should have a sniff at the HHOF or be included on any Top 100 NHLers of All-Time lists, but I do think he's worthy of having his #17 retired by the Maple Leafs.

So long as they don't retire Domi's #28...

October 17, 2016 @ 6:03 PM

Argie

@Justin & mrmojo...
No, I don't put Clark in the same category as Domi or the other two meatheads. However, popularity shouldn't determine if your number gets retired. Clark could fight and had a good shot - that's it. Look at his stats, its all there.

Also, they should have put the bar a little higher - like, if you're not in the HOF, your jersey doesn't get retired.

October 18, 2016 @ 10:51 AM

mrmojorisinca

alright that sounds much better. I don't agree, but at least I can understand your point with the explanation.

As long as they keep it to special players who mean something more then a gimmick then I'm all for players numbers being retired even if they aren't in the HOF..so lets hope the next one retired will be from someone on this current roster who brings the Stanley Cup to Toronto..

October 18, 2016 @ 11:16 AM

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