“Several years ago when I retired as a player, I stated the two proudest moments of my hockey career were when I was drafted first overall by the Toronto Maple Leafs and second, the day I was named captain of the Toronto Maple Leafs,” Clark said during a brief speech. “Tonight’s the official hat trick.” [link]
That night (last night) was the night his number was retired with the Toronto Maple Leafs.
I guess this is proof that I wasn’t a Leafs fan in the 80’s, because I don’t remember him as a big enforcer. When I think “wild-eyed 5-minute major for fighting”, I think Tie Domi. But You-Tube has plenty of reminders of just how much this guy gave for the game, and for the Leafs. I do remember the McSorley/Gilmour debacle, as that was the year I became a Leafs fan.
[man, at 0:41 there is a moment when McSorley looks like he could have gone end-over-end, and Clark would have had the better of him… all but for 1/16th of an edge of ice.]
Before that, in the 80’s, when I wasn’t much of a fan, my new friends at summer camp tried to convince me that Wendel Clarke was their uncle. It didn’t take much convincing, since I was all like “Wendel who?” And it turns out that the joke was really on me, as they were “Clarke” and he was “Clark”, but that didn’t stop me from asking how their uncle was doing… I guess the joke continues to be on me.
It’s weird being in Washington, and having the captian here be number 17 with the name Clark; now there’s hardly a game that goes by that I don’t think about Mr. Wendel.
Also makes me wonder if time will be so kind to Mr. Sundin, who has clearly been one of the most prolific Leafs, but who is leaving under such strained circumstances.
Whatev; looks like Gilmour is getting his due — his number will be raised in Toronto on Jan. 31.
More Wendel — All Heart: