. As some hockey fans may know, the Toronto Maple Leafs have not won a Stanley Cup since 1967. The following year, the NHL expanded from the Original Six to 12 teams.
Since that time, the Toronto Maple Leafs have produced seven Hall of Famers. They’ve also retired six numbers to honour its great players. We will take a closer look at the careers of the top 10 players since that last Stanley Cup victory.
Note: Some names you might expect to see may not be included on the top Toronto Maple Leafs players because their best years occurred before 1967.
Top 10 Toronto Maple Leafs Players Since 1967
1 Mats Sundin
Mats Sundin was not a homegrown talent but he did go on to become the franchise leader in points with 987.
The big Swede was the first European-born player to be drafted first overall when the Quebec Nordiques selected him at the 1989 Draft. He was acquired by the Maple Leafs in 1994 in a blockbuster trade that saw fan favourite Wendel Clark head to Quebec.
He would don the blue and white from 1994 to 2008 and lead the team in scoring 11 times over that stretch. Named captain in 1997, he tied Rick Vaive as the fastest player to reach 500 points, accomplishing the feat in 495 games.
Sundin was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2012 and his #13 hangs in the rafters at Scotiabank Arena. He’s a solid choice to be first in the best Toronto Maple Leafs players since 1967.
2 Darryl Sittler
Darryl Sittler was drafted eighth overall by the Maple Leafs in 1970 and was named captain of the team in 1975.
The Kitchener, Ontario native led the team in scoring eight times during his tenure from 1970-82. He currently stands second in scoring (916 points) in the long history of the franchise.
The graduate of the London Knights still holds the NHL record for points in one game, scoring 10 points against the Boston Bruins in 1976. Another career highlight was scoring the series-clinching goal for Team Canada against Czechoslovakia in the 1976 Canada Cup.
Sittler, who was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1989, shares his retired jersey #27 with Frank Mahovlich.
3 Borje Salming
Borje Salming was a trailblazer, signing with the Maple Leafs in 1973 and becoming the first Swedish-born superstar in the NHL. If not for all-time greats Bobby Orr, Denis Potvin and Larry Robinson, he would have won numerous Norris Trophies as the league’s best defenceman.
The smooth-skating defenceman was a Maple Leaf from 1973-89 and currently sits fourth in franchise scoring with 768 points. Few players had a greater impact on the city of Toronto. He received a lengthy standing ovation as a member of Team Sweden during the 1976 Canada Cup at Maple Leaf Gardens.
The native of Kiruna, Sweden was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1996. Also, his number 21 sweater has been retired. Sadly, he passed away in November at the age of 71.
4 Auston Matthews
Auston Matthews is the rising star of the franchise and, should he decide to spend the bulk of his career in Toronto, he most certainly will be at the top of the list before long.
The Arizona native (yes Arizona) was drafted first overall by the Maple Leafs in 2016. Matthews has led the team in scoring three times. This season, he became the fastest player in franchise history to reach 500 points, taking just 445 games to do so.
The product of the United States Development Program played one season with Zurich of the Swiss League before joining the Leafs. Last season, he became the first Maple Leafs player to score 60 goals en route to winning the Rocket Richard and Hart Trophies as well as the Ted Lindsay Award.
He has also won the Calder Trophy (2016-17) and Rocket Richard Trophy (2020-2021).
5 Wendel Clark
Clark was the heart and soul of the franchise during his first of three tenures with the team from 1985-94. He never led the team in scoring but he was the straw that stirred the drink for many years.
The Kelvington, Saskatchewan native was drafted first overall by the Maple Leafs in 1985. He started out playing defence for the Saskatoon Blades before moving up to forward for his NHL career.
Clark was traded to the Quebec Nordiques in 1994 in a huge deal that included Mats Sundin coming to Toronto. He returned to the team from 1995-98 and then again in 1999-2000. He racked up almost 1,700 minutes in penalties for his career.
6 Mitch Marner
Mitch Marner was drafted fourth overall by the Maple Leafs in 2015 and has led the team in scoring three times already.
The product of the London Knights set a franchise record this season, recording a point in 23 consecutive games. Then, he became the second fastest player in franchise history to collect his 500th point, reaching the milestone in just 467 games.
Playing Robin to Auston Matthews’ Batman, the Markham, Ontario native is a key member of a team with Stanley Cup aspirations.
7 Doug Gilmour
Doug Gilmour made a big splash in Toronto when he was acquired from the Calgary Flames in a 10-player deal in 1991.
The Kingston native was drafted by the St. Louis Blues in the seventh round of the 1982 Draft. Then, he was traded to the Flames and won a Stanley Cup in 1989. However, his personal bests were all set with the Maple Leafs from 1991-97. Gilmour led the team in scoring twice over that time.
The Cornwall Royals product won the Selke Trophy in 1992-93 and was named captain in 1994. He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2011 and his #93 has been retired by the team.
8 Rick Vaive
Vaive was drafted fifth overall by the Vancouver Canucks in 1979. He got traded to the Maple Leafs in his first NHL season. With fan favourite Dave ‘Tiger’ Williams going the other way in the deal, the pressure was on from Day 1.
Nicknamed Squid due to his Charlottetown, PEI roots, Vaive wore the blue and white from 1979-87. He led the team in scoring three times to become the fastest player to reach 500 career points with the team at the time (495 games).
Vaive also became the first player in franchise history to score 50 goals in 1981-82. He followed that up with two more 50-goal campaigns.
9 Norm Ullman
Norm Ullman started his Maple Leafs career in 1967 after a successful run with the Detroit Red Wings. Over his tenure with the Maple Leafs from 1967-75, he led the team in scoring three times.
The Provost, Alberta native signed with the Red Wings in 1955 and was traded to the Maple Leafs in an 8-player deal that involved Hall of Famer Frank Mahovlich heading to the Motor City.
Ullman was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1982.
10 Lanny McDonald
Lanny McDonald was drafted fourth overall by the Maple Leafs in the 1973 Draft. He paired up with captain Darryl Sittler to become a dynamic duo from 1973-80.
The native of Hanna, Alberta tied Sittler for the team lead in scoring in 1976-77 with 46 goals and 44 assists for 90 points. His most memorable moment as a Leaf came in 1978. Tha’s when he scored the overtime goal in Game 7 to eliminate the heavily-favoured New York Islanders. The Islanders would go on to win four straight Stanley Cup titles after that upset.
The Medicine Hat Tigers graduate would go on to win a Stanley Cup with his boyhood team, the Calgary Flames. He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2011.
11 Dave Keon
Like all good amplifiers, this list goes to 11 so we can include captain Dave Keon.
The Toronto St. Michael’s product was a Maple Leaf from 1960-75. He stands third all-time in franchise scoring with 858 points. He led the team in scoring once in the expansion era (1969-70).
The native of Rouyn-Noranda, Quebec won the Calder Trophy, Lady Byng and Conn Smythe. He may have won them all before 1967, but he still belongs on this list. Keon was Inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1986.
Top Toronto Maple Leafs Players Honourable Mention
Some of the names that did not make the list include 1972 Team Canada members Paul Henderson and Ron Ellis, Phil Kessel, the team’s best player during a down time in the early 2010’s and Felix Potvin, the best goaltender drafted and developed by the team in many years.
Do you see a name that doesn’t belong on this list? Or maybe you think there’s a player that has been overlooked. Remember, this is only the best players since 1967, so while George Armstrong, Tim Horton and Johnny Bower are all great Leafs, their best days came before the expansion era.