Bill Juzda

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Bill Juzda
Born (1920-10-29)October 29, 1920
Winnipeg, MB, CAN
Died February 17, 2008(2008-02-17) (aged 87)
Winnipeg, MB, CAN
Height 5 ft 9 in (175 cm)
Weight 190 lb (86 kg; 13 st 8 lb)
Position Defence
Played for Toronto Maple Leafs
New York Rangers
Playing career 1940–1952

William Juzda (October 29, 1920 – February 17, 2008) was a Canadian professional ice hockey defencemen from Winnipeg, Manitoba. He played with the Toronto Maple Leafs and New York Rangers of the National Hockey League and won two Stanley Cups with the Leafs in 1949 and 1951. Although not a prolific goal scorer Juzda built a reputation as one of hockey's hardest hitters. [1]

Early years and pre-war NHL career[edit]

Juzda began his hockey career in the Western Junior Hockey League with the Elmwood Maple Leafs and Kenora Thistles helping the Thistles earn a trip to the Memorial Cup final in 1940. He was called up by the New York Rangers during the 1940-41 season but spent a good part of the year with their AHL affiliate, the Philadelphia Rockets. He appeared in 45 games with the Rangers during the 1941-42 season. Juzda put his NHL career on hold when he volunteered for World War II service with the Royal Canadian Air Force (R.C.A.F.). He maintained his connection with hockey by playing for the R.C.A.F. hockey team in the Winnipeg National Defense Hockey League (WNDHL).

NHL career after WWII[edit]

At the conclusion of the war, Juzda was discharged from military service and he returned to hockey full-time. He joined the New Haven Ramblers of the AHL and was re-signed by the New York Rangers in time for the 1946 season. He would appear in another 137 games with the Rangers before being traded to the Toronto Maple Leafs in a multi-player deal in time for the 1947 season. With the Leafs, Juzda would win his two Stanley Cups in 1949 and 1951 playing alongside legendary Leaf team mates that included Ted "Teeder" Kennedy, Bill Barilko and Howie Meeker. He appeared in a total of 211 games with the Leafs. He left the NHL after the 1952 season.

Career after the NHL[edit]

Juzda played for the Pittsburgh Hornets of the AHL in 1952 and earned an AHL 2nd team All-Star selection. In 1953 he returned to Winnipeg to play for the Winnipeg Maroons for ten seasons making two Allan Cup final appearances. The Maroons toured Czechoslovakia where hockey veterans still refer to a bone-rattling body check as a “Juzda”.[citation needed] Also in the mid-fifties Juzda had brief stops with Intermediate hockey clubs, the Brandon Wheat Kings and the Pine Falls Paper Kings. While Juzda officially retired from hockey after 1963, he played old-timers’ hockey well into his 70’s.

Juzda coached hockey from levels midget to senior. Until his death, Juzda resided in Winnipeg, MB and still wore his Stanley Cup Ring from the 1948–1949 season. [2] He was inducted into the Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame and Museum in 1992. [3] He died on February 17, 2008.

Awards and achievements[edit]

External links[edit]