He coached the Toronto Maple Leafs, his surname began with the letter B and he led the Toronto Maple Leafs to a playoff series victory.
Okay, so we know it’s not Mike Babcock.
Nope, it’s John Brophy. He coached the Leafs from 1986-88. During the 1986-87 Stanley Cup playoffs, Brophy guided the Leafs to a first-round six-game upset of the St. Louis Blues before Toronto fell to the Detroit Red Wings in a seven-game Norris Division final. Toronto squandered a 3-1 lead in that series.
Brophy never came close to playing in the NHL. In fact, he toiled in the Eastern Hockey League from 1952-73 and was a feared minor-pro tough guy. Brophy topped 200 penalty minutes in 11 separate seasons.
Among Brophy’s teammates over the years were Vic Howe – Gordie’s brother – future NHL coaches John Muckler, Don Perry and Wayne Maxner, four-time Stanley Cup champion Andre Pronovost and future NHL goalies Les Binkley, Gilles Villemure, Andy Brown, Ross Brooks and ex-Leaf Marv Edwards. He even wrote a book about his experiences going from the bowels to the penthouse of hockey.