Baz Bastien was a promising Toronto Maple Leafs goaltender whose career was ended when he was hit in the eye on the first day of training camp in 1949. Bastien had arrived in Toronto in 1940 from Timmins to play for the Marlies.
Bastien won the OHA title for the Marlies in 1941 before spending three years in the Canadian army. When he returned he made his NHL debut on opening night of the 1945-46 season for the Maple Leafs. He lasted five games before being sent to the Pittsburgh Hornets in the AHL, where he played for the next four years, the victim of Turk Broda's playoff heroics in the Toronto net.
Bastien lost sight in his eye after it was hit directly by a puck, the third or fourth he faced at the team's first practice in Welland, Ontario. He stayed with the Hornet organization, becoming the head coach in 1950 and winning three AHL championships with the team. After running AHL franchises in Hershey and again in Pittsburgh, he served for ten years as Sid Abel's assistant general manager in Kansas City and in Detroit with the Red Wings. Bastien returned to Pittsburgh in 1977 when he made the Penguins general manager.
Six years later, Bastien, on his way home from a dinner sponsored by the Penguins, was driving 80 m.ph. and had a blood-alcohol level of .26 the states legal limit was .1 when his car rammed a motorcycle carrying two people, both of whom miraculously escaped serious injuries. Bastien died half an hour after the early-morning crash, succumbing to a combination of a fractured skull and a heart attack.