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As his number is retired, a look back on Marc Staal’s time in Sudbury


This year marks 50 years of the Sudbury Wolves and as part of the celebrations, the team is retiring the jersey of a gifted former player at Friday’s game.

Marc Staal has been a pillar in the hockey community for decades and this week’s Rastall OHL file takes a look back at his career and how his former team is celebrating his success.

Born in Thunder Bay, Staal began his OHL career in 2003 at age 16 in Sudbury playing for the Wolves. Two decades later, his Wolves No. 14 jersey is set to be retired at the Sudbury arena while he’s still in the NHL with the Florida Panthers.

"What he did in his career as a Sudbury Wolf just deserves to live in the rafters," said GM Rob Papineau.

“You know, moving forward no one will wear No. 14 again, that’s going to be Marc Staal’s honour and it’s something that will be up there for future Wolves to look up and aspire to.”

Staal has gone on to play more than a thousand games in the NHL. Looking back at Staal’s OHL career, Papineau said he stood out early.

“He started to look like a man playing with boys,” he said.

“He started to look like there was a difference in what he was able to do on the ice, controlling the play, controlling everything, and as a defenceman that’s rare. It’s special.”

Papineau said Staal was also a great ambassador for the Wolves and also for Sudbury, the north and the hockey community at large.

“You don’t realize how rare it is to be named the Most Valuable Player in the playoffs and not win the championship,” he said.

“I think Connor McDavid has done it since but it’s a very small group of people that have done it. You know he was a two-time gold medalist for our country, representing both Canada and the Sudbury Wolves when he was there he was named a top defenceman at that level.”

In front of what the Wolves hope will be a full house, Staal will be joined by his family for the ceremony to watch his number being raised. Top Stories

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