Kurt Walker (ice hockey)

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Kurt Walker
Born (1954-06-10)June 10, 1954
Weymouth, Massachusetts
Died August 17, 2018(2018-08-17) (aged 64)
Atlanta, Georgia[1]
Height 6 ft 3 in (191 cm)
Weight 185 lb (84 kg; 13 st 3 lb)
Position Right wing
Shot Left
Played for Toronto Maple Leafs
NHL Draft Undrafted
Playing career 1974–1980

Kurt Walker (June 10, 1954 – August 17, 2018) was an American professional ice hockey player who played 71 games in the National Hockey League (NHL) for the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Playing career[edit]

Walker started his professional career with the Saginaw Gears, of the International Hockey League, in the 1974–75 IHL season.

Walker played 71 NHL games, over parts of the 1975–76 through 1977–78 NHL seasons, all with the Toronto Maple Leafs. He scored his first career NHL goal against the Vancouver Canucks on January 21, 1977.[2] Walker scored 9 points in the NHL and accrued 152 penalty minutes.

He closed out his professional career with the Adirondack Red Wings of the American Hockey League in the 1979–80 AHL season.

Post–playing career[edit]

Playing as an enforcer throughout his hockey career, Walker required 17 surgeries to repair injuries.[3] He criticized the NHL Alumni organization, which he claimed did not support retired players enough financially.[4] As a result, he created an organization called Dignity after Hockey to raise awareness and funds to provide health care to retired players.[5] In 2017, he added his name to a class-action lawsuit against the NHL alleging neglect of support for players suffering injuries and financial strain once retired.[3]

Walker died in Atlanta, Georgia[1] on August 17, 2018 after a brief bout with sepsis.[6][7]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Loftus, Mike (August 19, 2018). "Kurt Walker, South Shore native who reached NHL, then advocated for players, dies at 64". The Patriot Ledger. Retrieved August 20, 2018. 
  2. ^ Malinowski, Mark (August 23, 2015). "GETTING TO KNOW: KURT WALKER". thehockeynews.com. Retrieved August 17, 2018. 
  3. ^ a b Gordon, Sean (November 29, 2013). "Seven seasons, 17 surgeries and Kurt Walker is still in pain". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved August 17, 2018. 
  4. ^ McGran, Kevin (May 24, 2014). "Ex-NHLers say they are hurting, need help but NHL Alumni isn't there for them". Toronto Star. Retrieved August 17, 2018. 
  5. ^ "Kurt Walker Former NHL Enforcer Heads "Dignity After Hockey"". independentsportsnews.com. May 17, 2017. Retrieved August 17, 2018. 
  6. ^ Hornby, Lance (August 18, 2018). "Former Leafs enforcer and advocate for retired NHLers, Kurt Walker, dead at 64". Toronto Sun. Retrieved August 18, 2018. 
  7. ^ Cooper, Bruce C."Former Maple Leaf Kurt Walker passes at 64" HockeyBuzz.com

External links[edit]