Ellis, a 19-year-old rookie with the Maple Leafs, astounded his teammates and rivals in Toronto.

Ron Ellis, a Maple Leafs legend, passed away last week, leaving the hockey world without a legend. Additionally, Ellis established a strong reputation for himself as a 19-year-old NHL rookie in this 1964 piece from THN’s archive.
This week, Hockey Hall of Famer Ron Ellis passed away, leaving the hockey world without a legend. In this exclusive article published in The Hockey News on November 7, 1964 (Vol. 18, Issue 5), Ellis’ influence as a 19-year-old Toronto Maple Leafs rookie who was destined to be a star was clearly seen.

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Before playing for the Leafs in the 1964–65 regular season, Ellis was a Memorial Cup winner with the Toronto Marlboros. However, he had very high standards for himself and made it clear to then-Leafs coach and general manager Punch Imlach what he expected of himself.

Ellis remarked, “I told Mr. Imlach I’m going to give hockey two years.” “Going back to school is my plan if I can’t make it by then. I’d rather not play in the lesser leagues. This is where it really matters.

Ellis didn’t need to be concerned. scoring 23 goals in just 62 games for the Leafs. He would go on to win a Stanley Cup in 1966–1967, but even before then, he was well-liked by both opponents and teammates.

Ellis won’t be in the minor leagues, according to Bruins manager Milt Schmidt. “He’s strong and a fantastic skater.”

Imlach continued, “I have no problems with kids like this standing by.”

Toronto, Ontario – The Toronto Maple Leafs haven’t had a promising rookie to match their most recent standout player, Dave Keon, in many years. Ron Ellis is the one with the new face.

Within the time frame he set for himself, Ellis, a 19-year-old winger with one more year of junior eligibility, has broken through to the veteran-laden Toronto team. He remarked, “I told Mr. Imlach (the Leafs’ general manager and coach) I’m going to give hockey two years.” “Going back to school is my plan if I can’t make it by then. I’d rather not play in the lesser leagues. This is where it really matters.

The Bruins’ coach Milt Schmidt declared, “He won’t be in the minors.” “He’s strong and a fantastic skater.”

Ellis had five goals and one assist in the Leafs’ first seven games, and everyone in the Toronto organization is projecting that Ellis will become a star. Goalie Terry Sawchuk feels Ellis is the best prospect he’s seen in a long time. “Ellis is so strong that he keeps driving at you when you think you’ve got him stopped,” defenseman Bobby Baun remarks. “You belong in the National League when you can skate like Ellis,” argues Leafs President Staff Smythe. “With kids like this standing by, I’ve got no problems,” remarks Imlach.

Dave Keon is in the center of the rink, Don McKenney is on the left wing, and Ellis is skating at the right wing.

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