The Toronto Maple Leafs are inducting former captain Dave Keon, goaltender Turk Broda and defenceman Tim Horton to their Legends Row monument.
The club will unveil statues of Keon, Broda and Horton in October and add them to previous inductees Ted Kennedy, Darryl Sittler, Johnny Bower, Borje Salming, George Armstrong, Syl Apps and Mats Sundin on Legends Row. Keon and representatives from the Horton and Broda families will be honoured Saturday night prior to the Leafs' game against the Montreal Canadiens at Air Canada Centre.
“There have been hundreds of great players who have worn the Maple Leaf sweater during the team's 99 seasons, but you would have a difficult time finding three players who are more loved, or better represent the greatness of this franchise and its history, than Dave Keon, Turk Broda and Tim Horton,” Leafs' president Brendan Shanahan said Thursday in a statement. “Legends Row is a tribute to the men who helped make the Toronto Maple Leafs one of the most iconic clubs in sports, but it's also an opportunity to build a strong connection between fans of all ages with that tradition.
“Adding the names Keon, Broda and Horton to the monument is a thrill for everyone in the organization and generations of Leaf fans.”
Keon spent 15 seasons with Toronto, winning the Calder Trophy as the NHL's top rookie in 1960-'61. A four-time Stanley Cup winner, Keon also claimed the Lady Byng Trophy twice (1962-'63) and served as Leafs captain for six seasons.
Keon left Toronto for the rival World Hockey Association in 1975, the start of a lengthy falling out between himself and former owner Harold Ballard. Keon returned to the NHL in 1979 with the Hartford Whalers, one of four WHA franchises absorbed by the NHL.
Keon retired after the 1981-'82 season and was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1986.
“I am very happy to have been selected with Turk Broda and Tim Horton to Legends Row,” said Keon. “I'm looking forward to the ceremonies on Saturday.”
Toronto purchased Broda from the Detroit Red Wings for $7,500 in 1936, a steep price at that time. Broda, who won the Stanley Cup five times with the Maple Leafs, would make 629 career appearances with the team and had a 2.53 goals-against average.
He was a member of the Leafs' squad that in 1942 dropped the first three games of the Stanley Cup final to Detroit before rallying to win the next four contests. The native of Brandon, Ont., was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1967 and died in October 1972 at the age of 58.
Horton, a native of Cochrane, Ont., is regarded as one of the best defencemen ever to play in Toronto. A six-time all-star, Horton played on four Stanley Cup-winning teams with the Leafs and became the first player in franchise history every to play in 1,000 games.
He also branched out into the coffee and doughnut industry, opening his first Tim Hortons restaurant in 1964. After stints with the New York Rangers and Pittsburgh Penguins, Horton was playing with the Buffalo Sabres in 1974 when he died in a car accident.
Horton was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1977.
As former Leafs captain George Armstrong would say of Tim Horton, “No finer person, teammate or hockey player has ever lived.”