Friday, September 17, 2010

Kelly & Nevin

This month, I had the pleasure of meeting two great players from the Original Six era - Red Kelly and Bob Nevin .

Red Kelly started his NHL career as a defenceman with Detroit. His run in the NHL came to an end as a centre with the Maple Leafs. Kelly is an honoured member of the Hockey Hall of Fame.

Bob Nevin broke into the NHL with Toronto and won two  Cups with the blue & white. A late season trade with the New York Rangers in 1964 prevented him from gaining a third cup ring. Nevin's leadership abilities were evident when New York named him team captain.

When talking to Kelly, I couldn't help but think of his biography from the Great Hockey Players Series. Written by Maple Leaf Gardens Publicity Director Stan Obodiac, it was published in 1971.

It covers Red's childhood in Simcoe, Ontario up to the time of his coaching the Pittsburgh Penguins. Although only 70 pages long, it is packed with photos and illustrations. In my opinion, we can never have enough hockey biographies. There certainly seems to be enough content to add another volume to the Red Kelly story. He not only was a professional athlete, but a Member of Parliament and a successful businessman. In 1964, he represented Lester Pearson at the Olympic Games in Tokyo.

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