Leafs to honour Clark prior to game against Blackhawks

TSN.ca Staff
11/22/2008 9:50:23 AM
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As the Montreal Canadiens retire Patrick Roy's number a few hours east on the 401, the Toronto Maple Leafs will be honouring a number of their own - former captain Wendel Clark's No. 17 - before the club's home game against the Chicago Blackhawks.

Clark's ceremony is one of two the Maple Leafs have scheduled for this season. They will also honor the No. 93 of Clark's old linemate, Doug Gilmour, on Jan. 31 before a game against the Pittsburgh Penguins.

The respective No. 17 and No. 93 banners for Clark and Gilmour will join those of Syl Apps, Ted Kennedy, Turk Broda, Johnny Bower, Tim Horton, George Armstrong, Charlie Conacher, Frank Mahovlich, Darryl Sittler, Hap Day, Red Kelly and Borje Salming. Unlike other NHL teams, an honoured number in Toronto remains in active circulation.

The first overall pick in the 1985 NHL Entry Draft, Clark had 330 goals and 234 assists in 793 games over his 14-year career with the Maple Leafs, Quebec Nordiques, New York Islanders, Tampa Bay Lightning, Chicago Blackhawks and Detroit Red Wings.

Clark enjoyed the best season of his career with the Maple Leafs in 1993-94, when he recorded personal bests of 46 goals and 76 points in 64 games. He served as captain from 1991-94, leading Toronto to the Western Conference Final twice.

The Leafs have just two wins in their last eight games and have allowed 67 goals, the most in the Eastern Conference.

Vesa Toskala has allowed three goals or more in six of his last seven games, including four goals in 28 minutes in a 4-2 loss in Vancouver last Saturday.

The Blackhawks have won the first two games of their annual circus road trip and three straight on the road after a 6-3 win Thursday at Dallas.

After getting two points in his first four games, Patrick Kane has a point in 12 of his last 15 games. Kris Versteeg is second on the team with 19 points.

Both players have helped Chicago climb to near the top of the league with 3.56 goals per game, and they are facing a Maple Leafs team that is nearly last in goals allowed at 3.37 per game.

Wendel Clark (Photo: Ken Levine/Allsport/Getty Images)


(Photo: Ken Levine/Allsport/Getty Images)
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