Börje Salming is dead: NHL legend loses battle with nervous illness

World ice hockey is losing one of its greatest legends: Swedish star defender Börje Salming is dead.

Börje Salming is dead: NHL legend loses battle with nervous illness

World ice hockey is losing one of its greatest legends: Swedish star defender Börje Salming is dead. Just a few days ago, the 71-year-old was honored by his Toronto Maple Leafs - causing goosebumps and tears.

Former NHL pro Börje Salming has died at the age of 71. This was announced by his former club Toronto Maple Leafs. The Swede, who played over 1000 games in the world's top league between 1973 and 1990, suffered from the incurable nervous disease ALS. He made the diagnosis public in August. He's a legend in Toronto, a trailblazer for generations to come. He played for the Maple Leafs for 16 years and collected 787 points. He was named to the NHL All-Star team three times. Salming was one of the league's first major superstars not to hail from hockey's homeland, the United States or Canada.

Just two weeks ago, the hearts of the fans, those responsible and the players at his former club were deeply moved. Salming was honored for his outstanding performance in the Maple Leafs jersey. Many fans should have already realized that evening: They will probably see their legend for the last time. The nervous disease ALS had seriously affected the Swede. The current players of the Maple Leafs banged their bats against the rink, the fans rose from their seats - and Salming was overcome with emotion. The Swede started to cry. And the club bosses next to him and the ranks also shed tears. The terminally ill NHL giant got a great, well-deserved honor. his last.

Since the beginning of the year, the Hall of Famer has had serious health problems. As the Swiss "Blick" reported, Salming was already struggling with weak muscles in February before he was diagnosed with ALS in July. A death sentence.

The former leader on the ice had become a terminally ill person, and the people of Toronto became aware of this tragedy on the evening of the ceremony. Salming had lost massive weight. "Blick" spoke of ten kilos in just two months. He could no longer speak, only communicate through gestures and digital media. "It's impossible to describe - to see the person you love in such a bad state that you can't do anything," his wife Pia confessed to the Expressen newspaper. Now Salming has lost the fight against the disease.

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