Brian Glennie. (The Canadian Press photo)

Former Maple Leaf and Canada’s Sports Hall of Famer Brian Glennie dies at 73

After nine seasons as a Leaf, he finished his career in 1978-79 with the Los Angeles King

Brian Glennie, a hard-hitting defenceman who spent most of his 10-year career with the Toronto Maple Leafs, has died. He was 73.

Glennie, who was inducted into Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame in 2005, helped Canada win Olympic bronze at the 1968 Winter Games in Grenoble, France, under Father David Bauer. The Maple Leafs confirmed his death on Friday.

“The Maple Leafs are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Brian Glennie,” the team said on Twitter. “Glennie was named one of the 100 Greatest Maple Leafs of all time and played over 500 games on the blue line in Toronto. Our thoughts are with his family during this difficult time.”

Glennie was No. 94 on the 2016 list, part of the franchise’s centennial anniversary.

The Leafs honoured Gennie with a moment of silence Friday before their game against visiting Anaheim.

Born Aug. 29, 1946, in Toronto, Glennie captained the Marlies to a 1967 Memorial Cup win on a team that included Brad Park and Mike Pelyk. He spent time at Michigan State before splitting the 1968-69 season with the minor-league Rochester American and Tulsa Oilers.

After nine seasons as a Leaf, he finished his career in 1978-79 with the Los Angeles Kings.

Over 572 career NHL regular-season games, Glennie had 114 points (14 goals, 100 assists) and 621 penalty minutes. He had one assist in 32 playoff games, all with the Maple Leafs. He played more games on the blue-line than any other Leafs in the 70s.

Glennie’s hip-checks stopped many an opposition skater in mid-stride. Former tough guy John Ferguson called him “an old-style standup hitter.”

Glennie was easy to spot with a mop of hair and, then later in his career, a helmet that looked like a bowling ball.

While Glennie gave out hits, he also absorbed them and was on the wrong end of an infamous incident in 1975 at Maple Leaf Gardens after he was blindsided by Dan Maloney of the Detroit Red Wings. Irate at a Glennie hit on a teammate, Malone jumped the Leaf from behind, rode him down and then smashed him into the ice.

Knocked unconscious, Glennie was taken to hospital with a concussion. Maloney was charged with assault causing bodily harm the next day but was later acquitted.

Maloney died in 2018 at the age of 68.

Glennie took his tough guy style to the advertising world, joining forces with fellow Leaf Lanny McDonald for a Swanson’s Hungry-Man dinner ad that saw Glennie rip the freezer door off to get his meal.

Glennie was named to the Canadian roster for the 1972 Summit Series against the Soviet Union, but was an extra player did not see action in any of the eight games.

The experience stayed with him, however.

“Probably the highlight of my career,” he told CTV.

The role of reserve player was not for everyone, with some leaving. Not Glennie.

“I remember when they came to me and asked me if I was going to leave, I said there’s no way I’m leaving this,” he recalled.

A back injury forced Glennie to retire from hockey. Later in life, he moved to Ottawa to be closer to his grandchildren.

There was no immediate word on cause of death although he had been in ill-health. Funeral arrangements were pending.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

NHL

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

UPDATED: Red Deer has nine active COVID-19 cases

Number of cases increased by 107 Friday

“My world exploded,” says Bentley-area farmer who’s swather was struck by a motorist

Dennis Duncan was a mile from home when his swather was struck by another travelling at high speeds

Rimbey’s Hawk Tail Brewery places in the Canadian Brewing Awards

Hawk Tail Brewery among two other Central Alberta Breweries to bring home top accolades.

QUIZ: A celebration of apples

September is the start of the apple harvest

Six injured, man in custody following BB gun incident in Alberta, RCMP say

Airdrie’s downtown core was told to shelter-in-place, while others nearby were asked to stay inside

Nearly 20 per cent of COVID-19 infections among health-care workers by late July

WHO acknowledged the possibility that COVID-19 might be spread in the air under certain conditions

Wetaskiwin RCMP make arrests for Hit and Run to residence

Damage estimates are expected to be in excess of $20,000.

Young Canadians have curtailed vaping during pandemic, survey finds

The survey funded by Heart & Stroke also found the decrease in vaping frequency is most notable in British Columbia and Ontario

Multi-cause protestors rally in Ponoka

Signs ran the gamut from protesting pedophilia to masks, to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau

B.C., Alberta sending nearly 300 fire personnel by Friday to help battle wildfires in Oregon

Some 230 firefighters, most from British Columbia but including a number from Alberta, will be deployed Friday

Most Read