Cornwall - Jan. 2, 2012 - Hard to believe that it was twenty years ago today that Cliff Fletcher pulled off the deal that brought Doug Gilmour to the Toronto Maple Leafs. January 2, 1992 will be remembered as day that the Leafs pulled off one of the more lopsided deals in their history.
The Maple Leafs acquired Gilmour along with forwards Ric Nattress, Kent Manderville, defenceman Jamie Macoun and goaltender Rick Wamsley in exchange for wingers Gary Leeman, Craig Berube, defencemen Alexander Godynyuk and Michel Petit, and goalie Jeff Reese.
While the newly crowned Hall of Famer won his only Stanley Cup with the Flames, he will always be remembered as a Maple Leaf. Statistically, his best years were in the Blue and White where he posted back-to-back 100 point seasons in 1992-93 and 1993-94. Gilmour currently sits 14th on Toronto’s all-time scoring list. He finished his career with 393 games played in Leafs uniform with 131 goals, 321 assists for a total of 452 points. Killer also garnered a total of 386 penalty minutes.
On top of his solid regular season numbers, Gilmour was at his best when it mattered the most - the Playoffs. In 52 playoff games, he scored 17 goals and added 60 assists for a total of 77 points. This works out to an impressive 1.48 points per game.
The Flames didn’t get much production out of the players they got in the deal. Leeman had 29 points in 59 games with the Flames, Berube (17 points in 113 games), Godynyuk (9 points in 33 games), Petit (48 points in 134 games) and Reese had 17 wins in 39 appearances for Calgary.
On January 31, 2010 Leafs GM Brian Burke made a big splash by shipping Nicklas Hagman, Matt Stajan, Jamal Mayers and Ian White to Calgary for the Leafs' current captain Dion Phaneuf, Fredrik Sjostrom and Keith Aulie.
Early indications are strongly suggesting that Burke won this deal hands down. Mayers, Hagman and White are no longer in Calgary, while Stajan has only one goal with the Flames this year. Sjostrom is no longer playing for the Leafs, but Aulie is a big defenceman that is beginning to play a role as a 5th or 6th D-man. Aulie has played eight games for the Leafs this season.
Phaneuf has emerged as the face of the Leafs and their leader. Since entering the NHL, Phaneuf has been one of the top scoring defencemen, due in large part to his cannon for a shot. Beyond his scoring touch, his toughness has benn a great fit for the Burke style of hockey. Phaneuf is having a rebound season and is on pace to once again score over 50 points this year.
Clearly, it will be hard to match the steal the Leafs achieved when the acquired Gilmour, although early indications also look good with the Phaneuf deal. As a Leafs fan, we can only hope that Burke has a few tricks up his sleeve again this January.
There have been a lot of trade rumours about Eric Staal coming to Toronto, but in keeping with the topic of this story - how about another January deal with the Flames? Perhaps after Jarome Iginla nets his 500th goal for the Flames, he too could join the Blue and White.