09 Nov Learn the story of Leafs legend Johnny Bower at Puck Talks
There are some names in hockey that don’t require any other context. Gretzky, Lemieux, Orr, Roy and more recently Crosby.
You can add Bower to that list. That is the title of Dan Robson’s recent book on the late Toronto Maple Leafs’ goaltender. The author, who recently joined The Athletic as a senior writer and head of features wanted to tell the story behind that legendary name.
“When it comes to sport in general but hockey specifically there are few legends that stand up to the mystique and adoration that Johnny built through his remarkable life,” says Robson of why he decided the write the book.
Much of that life has been well documented, especially once Bower had started his incredible career in the blue and white. But there is still plenty of the tale that has gone untold before this book, including why he changed his name to the now famous “Johnny Bower” in the first place.
“I think there’s a lot of mystery that surrounded him from when he sort of emerged as a Toronto Maple Leaf until his passing that really went somewhat unexplored,” he says.
Robson will be celebrating the launch of that book at the Puck Talks and The Athletic Toronto Leafs-Bruins viewing party on Saturday. The event will get underway at the Rec Room in Toronto at 5:00 p.m. and is free with an RSVP.
Robson has joined our pre-game portion of the event to discuss both his book and the incredible life of Bower.
“I think if you like good stories, you fell in love with hockey for the same reason I did I think you’ll sit down and have a great time chatting about one of the most beloved figures that hockey has ever seen,” he says.
The event also features a pre-game panel for the current edition of the Leafs game against the Boston Bruins hosted by Andi Petrillo and also featuring Robson, Tyler Dellow, Justin Bourne and Scott Wheeler.
“It’s interesting to be talking about Johnny, who was obviously part of the last time the Toronto Maple Leafs won the Stanley Cup back in 1967,” says Robson, “I think talking about the Leafs now as potential Cup champions it’s interesting to talk about the parallels of the past and the present.”