Angelo Bumbacco, founder of the OHL's Soo Greyhounds, has died at age 88.

"Angelo was an invaluable part of the Soo Greyhounds since our inception and had an enormous impact on the lives of many of our players making them feel comfortable moving away from home to come play in the Soo," team president Tim Lukenda said in a statement. "He is a true legend who will be remembered fondly as the Soo’s Mr. Hockey."

Bumbacco drafted NHL Hall-of-Famer Wayne Gretzky at age 16 and the legend said Bumbacco was a "friend and mentor ever since."

"Angelo Bumbacco's contributions to our league and the game of hockey cannot be overstated," said OHL commissioner David Branch.

In addition to becoming a permanent fixture in the hockey community of Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., Bumbacco scouted in the NHL for the Detroit Red Wings, Chicago Blackhawks, Pittsburgh Penguins, New York Rangers and the Tampa Bay Lightning, including in 2004 during the run to their first Stanley Cup victory.