Doug Gilmour is a true legend, and to nobody’s surprise, he was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2011. Gilmour won the Stanley Cup in 1989 and scored the Cup Clinching Goal. In 1 474 games, Gilmour scored 450 goals and 1 414 points.
He’s one of the top centermen in NHL history, and to this day, he still holds three franchise records for the Maple Leafs. Nobody has more assists in a season (95), points in a season (127), and assists in a game (6).
After retiring, Gilmour got appointed Senior Advisor for the Maple Leafs. Then, two years later, he stepped into the bench to be an assistant coach for the Toronto Marlies in the AHL. Gilmour then, after just one season, moved on.
Not many former NHL players go on to work with juniors, but Gilmour started as a head coach for the Kingston Frontenacs, OHL, in 2009. He later became General Manager for the Frontenacs and even President of Hockey Operations.
Guesting ”The Sign Off: A Frameworth Podcast,” Gilmour talked about the challenges of coaching and being a General Manager in the OHL.
”Kingston called and I decided to go coaching junior, and it was a great experience. The GM side was pretty cool too, when it’s draft time and to see the faces of the kids. But one thing I hated about it was when I had to cut a kid. It’s like I’m killing their dream, and you got to stay positive, and you know… You’re close, but in reality, you’re not. Even if you have to trade a kid, it’s really shattering.”
”I had one parent, and he’s very wealthy. And his kid was a top two centerman, and a lot of these kids are the top players coming into junior, and some stay at that level. They don’t develop any higher. And other kids are maybe a little bit smaller, they’re growing, getting bigger, and their skills are getting better. So it’s not up to us to let that happen. Give them an opportunity. But they got to do it by themselves.”
The kid Gilmour was talking about wasn’t happy with his role in the team.
”So this one kid decided to come in. He played power play and regular shift, but he wanted to kill penalties. And I said, well, what about the third-fourth line guys that protect you and go through the wall for you? I got to give them a role too.”
”So I guess he went and spoke to his dad. We played that one night and I’m walking out and there’s his dad talking to the owner of Kingston. So I got home, and the owner calls me, and I said, ’Okay, what was that about?’ And he goes, ’He wanted to know how much the team was. He wanted to buy it, so he could fire you.”
The owner didn’t sell the team to the wealthy parent, however. And what happened next, Gilmour calls,”what comes around goes around.”
”So you talk about karma, but two weeks later, he gets caught trying to outrun cops at 3AM. My nephew’s K-9 in Kingston, so, his dad said ’Well, what can you do for us?’ And I said, ’Nothing. You got to fight this one on your own.”