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This Date in NHL History

Aug. 21: Blake born in Ontario

Plus: Hockey Hall of Fame announces Class of 1969; Wild hire Guerin as GM

by John Kreiser @jkreiser7713 / Managing Editor


1912: Toe Blake, who plays on or coaches 11 Stanley Cup-winning teams on the way to earning induction into the Hockey Hall of Fame, is born in Victoria Mines, Ontario.

Blake, whose real name is Hector, signs with the Montreal Maroons in February 1935, then plays eight regular-season games and one in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. He gets his name on the Cup for the first time when the Maroons defeat the Toronto Maple Leafs in the Cup Final.

The Maroons send Blake to the Montreal Canadiens on Feb. 13, 1936, and he spends the rest of his hockey career helping them win championships.

Two come as a player; he combines with Elmer Lach and Maurice Richard to form the "Punch Line," one of the great three-man units in NHL history. The line helps the Canadiens win the Stanley Cup in 1944 and 1946. It stays intact until Jan. 11, 1948, when Blake breaks his leg in a game against the New York Rangers, ending his playing career after 13 seasons. He's elected to the Hockey Hall of Fame as a player in 1966 and is named to the 100 Greatest NHL Players in 2017.

Blake turns to coaching and gets the job with the Canadiens in 1955. Montreal wins the Cup in each of his first five seasons and finishes with eight championships in Blake's 13 seasons as coach. He steps down after the Canadiens sweep the St. Louis Blues in the 1968 Cup Final.

Video: Toe Blake was one of toughest players, best coaches



1969: The Hockey Hall of Fame unveils its newest members. Longtime NHL players Red Kelly, Sid Abel, Roy Worters and Bryan Hextall Sr. are elected. Former Detroit Red Wings owner Bruce Norris is elected in the Builders category.


2006: The Los Angeles Kings announce they will retire Luc Robitaille's No. 20 in a ceremony on Jan. 20, 2007. The announcement comes four months after Robitaille plays his final game, ending a career that sees him score 557 of his 668 NHL goals with Los Angeles.


2019: The Minnesota Wild hire Bill Guerin as the fourth general manager in their history. The move comes 14 months after they pass on Guerin and hire Paul Fenton as GM to replace Chuck Fletcher. Guerin comes to the Wild after five seasons as an assistant GM with the Pittsburgh Penguins following a playing career that sees him score 429 goals in 18 seasons and win the Stanley Cup with the New Jersey Devils and Pittsburgh Penguins.

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