This is a photo of Floyd Smith taken 50 years ago. He had a nice NHL career (616 games over many years, 1954-1972) and then went straight into coaching in the minors (Cincinnati) before spending some time as an NHL bench boss in the mid-to-late 70s for Buffalo and then Toronto.
Punch Imlach once wrote about him that he would “go into the corners as well as anybody in the league.”
Floyd Smith is one of the men who spent time as General Manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs. Considering their long history, the Leafs haven’t had very many men at the top.
Smith was GM of the Leafs 1989-91, after Gord Stellick and before Cliff Fletcher. By my count there have been 12 General Managers at one time or another in Leafs history:
- Charles Querrie
- Conn Smythe
- Hap Day
- Punch Imlach
- Jim Gregory
- Gerry McNamara
- Gord Stellick
- Floyd Smith
- Cliff Fletcher
- Ken Dryden
- Pat Quinn
- John Ferguson Jr
Which if I’m right would make the next name #13. It looks like Toronto won’t have that man in place before the draft, before they decide who to buy out, hell before the team is in place for 08-09. When they hung Ferguson out to dry, Richard Peddie said the following about the next Leafs GM:
“Our ideal candidate will be a long-term builder and a short-term fixer who has an established track record of success on the ice. Along with experience and extensive knowledge in the areas of drafting and identifying talent in the professional, amateur and international ranks, this individual will be comfortable with the intense scrutiny within the Toronto hockey market and will work effectively with the media. He will have the full autonomy to lead this hockey club in the manner he feels is best.”
He’ll have complete autonomy, but will take control of the club after the draft, after the free agent season and after all the other teams have made their roster changes and made themselves ready for camp and another season.