Skip to main content

George Parsons

Toronto Maple Leafs' George Parsons was in his second full season when tragedy struck.

Parsons was a junior and senior star in Toronto before sticking with the Leafs in 1938. A powerful skater with a blistering shot, hockey was to literally be his salvation. When he was not on the ice, he was working to support his family. From the age of 14 he dropped out of school to work crushing stone because his ill father was unable to provide for his family.

The hometown boy seemed destined to become the next Maple Leafs star. In 1939 he helped the Leafs to a first place finish and an appearance in the Stanley Cup final while being described by one scribe as "the best money player on the club."

Then a nasty accident resulted in Parson losing his left eye, and his hockey career.

"I remember the date well. It was March 3rd, 1939. I was 24 years old. Earl Robinson of Chicago tried to lift my stick but he hit me in the eye. When I was in the hospital the president of the league, Frank Calder, visited me and suggested that I shouldn't play again."

In fact Parsons would not be allowed to play. The league had previously adopted the Trushinski by-law which forbade players with one eye to play. It was named after a minor leaguer named Frank "Snoozer" Trushinski, who had lost sight in one eye, returned, and then lost most of the sight in his other eye.

Though it was an accident, George Parsons had to come to grips with the fact that his once-promising career as a hockey player was over.

But his career in hockey was not.

He became heavily involved with the equipment manufacturer CCM, helping to develop equipment that would be safer for players at all levels, from youth to pros. He rose to North American sales manger to vice-president of product development. His work on helmets and facial protection was his biggest legacy.


Popular posts from this blog

100 Greatest Hockey Players Of All Time

What follows is a listing of the 100 greatest hockey players of all time, in my opinion. As discussed earlier, the definition of greatness is a very personalized endeavor and there is absolutely nothing wrong with it.
While there is no way of ever truly ranking the top 100 definitively, it is important for the creators of such lists to be open and transparent of how the came to their conclusions. That accountability allows the reader to better understand the process. 

Although admittedly I'm using a completely unscientific formula, I weigh career achievements (era statistics, awards, championships) and legacy (impact on and off ice, peak dominance) equally high. I rank player ability as the third most important ingredient, as first and foremost as a tie breaker. Hence, I'm not necessarily looking for the better player, as in text book definitions of what a hockey player should be, but for players with the greatest careers and greatest legacies. Therefore the best player is not n…

Top Ten Junior Players Of All Time

Let's take a look at the Top Ten junior players of all time. For the purposes of this list we will at players in the WHL, OHL and QMJHL only.

10. Pat Lafontaine, Verdun, QMJHL Rookie-record 104 goals, 234 points in 1982-83; major junior player of the year.

9. Denis Potvin, Ottawa, OHL 254 games, 95 goals, 234 assists, 329 points. Broke Bobby Orr's junior records.

8. John Tavares, Oshawa, OHL 215 goals, 433 points in 247 games; most goals in OHL history; eligibility rules changed to admit him at 15; 2006 major junior rookie of the year, 2007 major junior player of the year; two world juniors, named 2009 all-star, top forward and MVP.

7. Sidney Crosby, Rimouski, QMJHL 120 goals, 303 points in 121 games; two-time major junior player of the year; silver and gold with Canada at two world juniors.

6. Eric Lindros, Oshawa, OHL 97 goals, 216 points in 95 games; one Memorial Cup victory; three world junior tournaments; major junior player of the year in 1991.

5. Mike Bossy, Laval, Q…

Greatest Hockey Legends: M