4 Former Toronto Maple Leafs Who Could Turn This Team Around

Toronto Maple Leafs v Florida Panthers
Toronto Maple Leafs v Florida Panthers / Megan Briggs/GettyImages
3 of 5

Borje Salming

Let’s face it, you could probably pick a couple of current defenders from any NHL roster, add them to the Toronto Maple Leafs lineup, and see a significant improvement. 

The team needs more speed, more passing, more shooting, more toughness, more everything.

Borje Salming had all of that, and the heart of a warrior.  He played 1148 games for the Leafs over 16 seasons, amassing an amazing 787 points (a 56 points per 82 game pace, for 16 seasons!!). 

He wasn’t just about offense, though, as he played just as well in the defensive zone, hitting, blocking shots, and clearing the front of the net.

As one of the first Swedes to star in the NHL, Salming took a lot of abuse, and he didn’t back down, spending 1344 minutes in the sin-bin over the course of his career.  Those are almost “goon” numbers in todays’s NHL.

Like many of his peers, Salming was stuck for most of his years on bad Harold Ballard era squads, but he always stood proud, and often bloody, on the Toronto blue line.

Today’s team has Morgan Rielly trying to hold down the fort (and he really should be the captain), but another injection of “lion-heartedness” is clearly what’s needed to elevate the modern Toronto Maple Leafs.