On today’s date in 1938, Toronto hockey legend and former Canadian senator Frank Mahovlich was born in Timmins, Ont.
The son of Croatian immigrants, Mahovlich grew up in small towns across Ontario while being scouted by the Toronto Maple Leafs. He joined the Maple Leafs full time in 1957-58; that season he beat Bobby Hull to win the Calder Trophy for rookie of the year. He also played for the Detroit Red Wings, Montreal Canadiens, Toronto Toros and Birmingham Bulls throughout his career.
Mahovlich was one of hockey’s greatest goal scorers, leading the Leafs in scoring every season between 1960-61 and 1965-66. He was the main offensive weapon for a dynasty that won the Stanley Cup in ’62, ’63, ’64 and ’67, and he was named to either the First or the Second NHL All-Star Team a total of nine times.
In March 1968, Mahovlich was traded to the Detroit Red Wings, with whom he netted a career high of 49 goals in 1968-69.
By 1971, he would be traded to the Montréal Canadiens, where he was a key part of two Stanley Cup wins.
Altogether, he played on six Stanley Cup-winning teams and was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1981 and Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame in 1990.
In 1994, he was made a Member of the Order of Canada. Four years later, Mahovlich was appointed to the Senate of Canada by then-prime minister Jean Chrétien, serving in that capacity until 2013.
CANADA POST COMMEMORATION
In January 2003, Canada Post honoured Mahovlich on a six-stamp souvenir sheet (Scott #1972) featuring NHL all-stars.
Released to commemorate the 2003 NHL All-Star Game in Florida, the sheet depicts Mahovlich (SC #1972a) alongside five legendary hockey players (from SC #1972b-f): Raymond Bourque, Serge Savard, Stan Mikita, Mike Bossy and Bill Durnan.
The 2003 NHL All-Stars set was designed by Stéphane Huot, of Montréal, and assisted by illustrator Charles Vinh and computer artist Pierre Rousseau. Each player is shown in an action shot and in a formal portrait as part of the selvedge.