Toronto Maple Leafs legend Börje Salming has died after a battle with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS.) He was 71.
The group launched a press release on Thursday asserting the dying on behalf of the Salming household, saying he was a “pioneer of the sport and an icon with an unbreakable spirit and unquestioned toughness.”
“He helped open the door for Europeans in the NHL and defined himself through his play on the ice and through his contributions to the community,” Maple Leafs President Brendan Shanahan wrote.
“Börje joined the Maple Leafs 50 years ago and will forever be part of our hockey family. We extend our deepest condolences to his wife, Pia, his children Theresa, Anders, Rasmus, Bianca, Lisa and Sara and brother Stieg.”
Salming introduced in August he had been recognized with ALS.
“I’ve obtained information that has shaken my household and me,” he stated on the time “The indicators that indicated that one thing was incorrect in my physique turned out to be the illness ALS, often known as Lou Gehrig’s illness.”
Salming, who performed 16 seasons with the Toronto Maple Leafs from 1973 to 1989 and was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1996, stated he acknowledged there’s presently no treatment for ALS.
“In an instantaneous, every part modified. I have no idea how the times forward shall be, however I perceive that there shall be challenges higher than something I’ve ever confronted.”
ALS is a progressive nervous system illness that results in paralysis, the lack to swallow, respiratory failure and eventually dying.
Earlier this month, the previous Leafs defenceman was honoured by the franchise in an emotional moment with former gamers Darryl Sittler and Mats Sundin.
Mayor John Tory expressed his condolences to Salming’s household, family members, and to Toronto hockey followers following the information of his passing.
“From Sweden to Toronto, ‘The King’ shall be remembered for the unbelievable impression he had on our metropolis,” Tory stated in a statement Thursday. “I’m grateful he was capable of be right here earlier this month for such a brave and loving moment on the ice.”
Salming’s #21 jersey hangs within the rafters at Scotiabank Arena. His quantity is just one of 19 others the Leafs have retired.
Outside of the Leafs, Salming performed for Sweden at 4 IIHF World Championships, three Canada Cups, and the 1992 Winter Olympics.
With recordsdata from CTV News Toronto’s Sean Davidson