John Brophy: His name alone evokes so many wild stories from hockey's Slap Shot era. But for a certain group of Maple Leaf players, there's the unforgettable years he coached in the late '80s in St. Catharines and with Toronto between 1986-88. His old-time hockey methods collided with the modern NHL and the resulting mess played out in the waning days of the Harold Ballard era in Toronto.
Flash forward 25 years. A group of 'Brophy's Boys' knew they had to visit their colourful coach, when they recently happened upon the Nova Scotia retirement home where the 80-year-old is now confined.
"We were on the NHL Legends tour bus outside the native reserve in Eskasoni," said Mark Osborne. "Guys such as Al Iafrate, Tom Fergus, Gary Leeman, myself, Dan Daoust. We had a five-hour drive to our next game in Liverpool, we looked at the atlas and saw the road ran right through Antigonish.