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Former NHLer Dave Balon dies at age 68; won two Cups with Habs

Balon had suffered from multiple sclerosis for more than 30 years. He died Tuesday, according to the New York Rangers, one of his former teams. Balon also played for the Vancouver Canucks and Minnesota North Stars, as well as the Quebec Nordiques when they were part of the WHA.

The forward began his NHL career with the Rangers in 1959 but was traded to Montreal in a highly publicized deal that brought goaltending legend Jacques Plante to New York in June 1963.

He went on to win the Cup with the Habs in 1965 and '66.

Balon was first affected by MS toward the end of his playing career in the early 1970s. The disease eventually led to his retirement in 1974.

His battle with MS continued to slow him down during his years coaching in the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League.

He is survived by his wife Gwen, daughter Jodi and son Jeff.

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