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1980-81 Bill McCreary Toronto Maple Leafs Game Worn Jersey Rookie Gretzky Hit - Photo Match - Video Match
Lot #84

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1980-81 Bill McCreary Toronto Maple Leafs Game Worn Jersey  Rookie  Gretzky Hit - Photo Match - Video Match
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Description
1980-81 Bill McCreary Toronto Maple Leafs Game Worn Jersey Rookie Gretzky Hit - Photo Match - Video Match
Lot #84

This road blue knit gamer by Maska was worn by Bill McCreary during the 1980-81 NHL season, his rookie year. The Toronto Maple Leafs selected McCreary in the 6th round of the 1979 NHL Entry Draft. This Hudson, Ohio native came from a long line of players in the family and began his career playing college hockey at Colgate University for a couple of seasons. McCreary turned pro in 1980-81 with the AHL’s New Brunswick Hawks. The Leafs came calling later that season and McCreary was officially called up to the NHL at just 21 years of age.

It was in his 2nd NHL game on January 3, 1981 in Edmonton that McCreary found hockey immortality. He laid a devastating hit on Oilers phenom Wayne Gretzky, something that has been replayed perhaps a million times thru the years. In fact, Don Cherry famously used this footage in an early version of his Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em series and has talked about it on numerous other occasions. McCreary’s NHL journey lasted a mere 12 games. He would spend the next 7 seasons playing primarily in the IHL, having spent his last 5 years with the Milwaukee Admirals.

The game wear on this sweater is solid and consists of stick and slash marks, board burns, board paint transfer, un-repaired burn holes, stitch pops, material pulls, heavy inner pilling and a handful of team-sewn repairs. Shown above is a beautiful photo match of McCreary wearing this exact jersey on January 3, 1981 immediately after laying out Wayne Gretzky. Also shown above are video highlights of the devastating blow to “The Great One”. Based on the nice game wear it’s safe to assume that McCreary wore this sweater during the preseason while competing to make the big squad in addition to wearing it during the 1980-81 regular season. This well-worn photo matched example would make for quite the conversation piece in your collection and is your chance to own a piece of hockey history!