Ron Hawkins sings of “a wounded soldier from the bad old days,” in his song Peace and Quiet, which Tim Thompson wove together with archived footage to create his acclaimed ode to the Toronto Maple Leafs.
That lyric rings true when examining the tenure of former captain Rick Vaive.
A prolific scorer, he was named team captain at the age of 22 and netted three-consecutive 50-goal seasons while enduring a circus-like atmosphere and futility during the Harold Ballard era.
At his peak between 1980-87, he achieved great personal success on the ice, but it also marked a time when the franchise’s legacy to past glory was fully severed. It was a paradoxical experience as a professional in a life that through various contributing circumstances, “left him on the edge of the limelight.”
Catch 22 is the title of his memoir which he wrote with journalist Scott Morrison and it was released on Nov. 17. Here is Vaive, in his own words.