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Maple Leafs who played for Canada at the Olympics

While a few Leafs are destined for international duty at the Olympics this week, none will be suiting up for Canada this time around. (Bryan McCabe, of course, was the last Maple Leaf to represent Canada at the Olympics.)

But there is an interesting Maple Leaf history in terms of individuals who, at some point in their NHL career, played for the blue and white and also represented Canada during an Olympic hockey competition, before or during their time with the Leafs. (I’m not including players like ex-Leaf greats Sid Smith or Todd Sloan, who represented Canada at World championships as amateurs after retiring from the NHL, or Carl Brewer, the Leaf All-Star who retired early and also re-gained his amateur status to compete for Canada in the World Championships in 1967, before returning to the NHL. I’m focusing only on those who played in the Olympics.)

It’s worth noting the gap in the list below for 1972 and 1976, because Canada pulled out of Olympic competition after 1968, not to return until 1980.

I’ve no doubt missed some guys, but in my lifetime, the names of one-time Maple Leafs who also played at least once in the Olympics that I recall include:


Darryl Sly - Sly played briefly for the Leafs in the mid-later 1960s.


Brian Conacher – a descendant of the famous Conacher sporting family (his father Lionel is pictured at right, while he was with the New York Americans. Uncle Charlie was a Maple Leaf star, voted the athlete of Canada’s first half of the twentieth century). Brian was a key member of the ’67 Cup squad and has since written some very thoughtful books on his experiences in the game over the years.

Rod Seiling - we lost Rod in the 1964 Andy Bathgate trade. He had several splendid seasons with the Rangers, reaching the Stanley Cup finals in 1972 before returning to play for the Leafs in the mid-1970s.

Terry Clancy – other than the Conachers’, the Clancy family may be the one most affiliated with the Maple Leafs. King’s son Terry played parts of three seasons with the Leafs in the late ‘60s and early ‘70s, after playing briefly with the expansion Oakland Seals. His dad was a fixture around Maple Leaf Gardens as a player, coach and executive off and on for fifty years.


Brian Glennie - joined the Leafs organization after his Olympic experience, and was a solid player on the Leaf blueline for a decade.

Bill MacMillan - came up in the Leaf system, played for Canada’s national team (I’m not certain if he played in the Olympic Games in France, but I believe he was on the team) and then surfaced with the Leafs in the 1970-’71 season, and had a solid NHL career, mostly with the Islanders.


Glenn Anderson - Anderson played with the Leafs on that wonderful ’93 team, after his outstanding Stanley Cup years with the Oilers throughout the 1980s. he played in the Olympics before turning pro.


Kirk Muller – best-known as a New Jersey Devil and for helping Montreal win a Cup in ’93. He came to the Leafs when the team was in transition in the mid ‘90s. he also played in the Olympics before joining the NHL.

Russ Courtnall - a first-round Maple Leaf draft choice, part of the Maple Leaf “Hound Line” in the ‘80s.

Dave Gagner - he had a solid career with the North Stars after the Olympics and played with Toronto near the end of his career.


Brian Bradley - had his best seasons in Vancouver and Tampa but played parts of two seasons in the early ‘90s with the Leafs.

Serge Boisvert - played a few games, I recall, with the Leafs in the early 1980s, after playing in the Olympics.


Trevor Kidd - a long-time NHL’er who was a Leaf back-up in the early 2000s.

Eric Lindros - Leaf fans pined for Lindros for years. By the time we got him it was too late, and injuries ended any hope of a happy ending in blue and white.


Todd Warriner - played with the Leafs in the mid-later 1990s.


Joe Nieuwendyk - pros were allowed at this point. We got him too late too, though he was a wonderful addition, if only for a short time.

Shayne Corson - better known perhaps for his play elsewhere, but I loved his shot blocking in the playoffs for Toronto.


Curtis Joseph - maybe would have never left Toronto if he had not been named to the ’02 team. (My point is that there wouldn’t have been any issues around his not playing more in the Olympics in Salt Lake, and he may have been happy to stay and play in Toronto.)


Bryan McCabe - came to Toronto in one of the best trades the Leafs have made, and was an end of season All-Star with Toronto in 2004 before being named to the Olympic team in 2006 in Turin, Italy.

For me, the most interesting names are those individuals who played prior to the Olympics accepting North American professionals in 1998, particularly those from the 1960s—when the players were all truly un-paid amateurs.

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