Game 110 – Maple Leafs 2, Canadiens 0

Game 110
Maple Leafs 2, Canadiens 0
Thursday, November 24, 1932
Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario

Planting two shots in the cage behind George Hainsworth in the middle of a rousing second period, the Maple Leafs handed the Montréal Canadiens the short end of a 2 to 0 count in their first meeting of the present National Hockey League campaign at Maple Leaf Gardens last night.

The victory placed the Leafs in first place in the International section of the NHL, tied with the New York Americans at five points each. The defeat was the third the Canadiens have suffered this week.

While lacking some of the excitement and thrills of previous meetings between the Flying Frenchmen and the Leaping Leafs here, last night’s game enthused a crowd of 8,000 fans. All the scoring was confined to a few minutes in the second frame, which was the best of the three. Andy Blair and Charlie Conacher were the successful snipers. It was Conacher’s first goal of the present season, and he obtained it single-handed.

The Leafs were entitled to the decision. They outshot their opponents in all three periods, had more close-in scoring chances, and combined better on the attack. Only some fine stopping by the nonchalant Hainsworth prevented them collecting a more substantial total.

The visitors only showed flashes of the speed of which they are capable, with Howie Morenz setting the pace, as usual, but finding only sporadic responses from his teammates. Morenz is just as outstanding as of old on the Canadiens’ attack, but his side partners are slipping. At least, that is the way it looked last night. Joliat and Gagnon were away below their brilliant displays of the past.

But just because they failed to register a goal, don’t get the impression that the Canadiens didn’t give Lorne Chabot, the Leaf goalkeeper, plenty of work to do. Chabot turned in a sensational display at times. In the second period, he kicked aside three shots that had goal tagged all over them, all within the space of a minute. There were times, too, when the Canadiens had the Leafs boxed up in their own defence area, and the Toronto net guardian was busier than a man giving toy balloons away at a school children’s picnic.

Chabot was simply unbeatable at all times. He may have been extremely fortunate on two or three shots, but for the most part he was just too smart for the visiting sharpshooters, and his performance was one of the features of the game.

Blair got the first goal of the game nearly eight minutes after the start of the second period. It was a beauty, too. After some end-to-end rushes by both teams, that gave the fans the first big thrills of the evening. Doraty charged down right wing, carried the puck over the visitors’ blue line, and snapped a pass to Blair, who was fifteen feet in front, and to one side of the net. The rangy centreman pivoted as he backhanded a shot that went high all the way, and beat Hainsworth cleanly, to lodge in the centre of the cage. It was a speedy snap shot, and Hainsworth was just a fraction of a second too late in his attempt to block it.

The second goal was nearly as good. It came about five minutes later, when both teams were short a man. Clancy and Gagnon had a run-in behind the Leaf net, Gagnon hitting Clancy over the head with his stick. Gagnon was beckoned to the penalty bench, but he lingered to have a few more words with Clancy, and both players were put off when it looked as if they were going to drop their sticks and do a little punching to relieve their feelings. In the penalty box, it was necessary to seat the penalty timekeeper between them in order to keep peace, but they subsided finally, eventually shaking hands.

While the teams played five men a side, Conacher carried the puck from his own end of the ice rink, charged in over the Canadiens’ blue line, and blazed one of his steaming shots from outside the defence. The puck staggered Hainsworth as he blocked it. He could not hold it or deflect it more than a few feet in front of the side of the net, and Conacher, continuing his rush through the defence, picked up the rebound and, while the goalkeeper was still off balance, flipped the rubber into the corner of the net.

Between that goal and the one Blair scored previously, Hainsworth had a narrow escape from being scored upon. A rolling puck from Blair’s stick went bounding along the ice in front of the net. One of the Canadiens attempted to clear it but missed, and Hainsworth, caught off guard momentarily, also missed it as he made a quick stab with his stick to stop the puck. However, fortune smiled upon him that time, for the rubber struck the goalpost and lay just outside the goal line, but behind Hainsworth. To everyone but the goal judge, it looked like a goal, and both teams virtually stopped. However, one of the Canadien wing men who had a clearer view than most skated over while Hainsworth was still looking for the rubber in the net, and fished it out from under his feet.

Both goalkeepers were called upon for some hard stops in the goalless first period. A penalty to Conacher in the first few minutes gave the Canadiens a chance to wage a strong offensive, but the Leafs had no difficulty holding them well out. Carson and Gagnon drew penalties in close succession, and, with a two man advantage, the Leafs failed to get the puck past Hainsworth. Before the Canadiens were at full strength again, Lépine and Larochelle broke away and found a one man Toronto defence facing them. Larochelle passed the puck to Lépine, but his knee high shot from close range was turned aside by Chabot. It was a great scoring chance spoiled.

The second period more than made up for any lack of thrills in the first, and both teams did some furious attacking. Morenz led several rousing assaults on the Toronto net, while Charlie Conacher was prominent among the Leaf attacks. The Blair-Gracie-Doraty front line of the Leafs also provided some keen excitement whenever it was on the ice, and it earned the laurels as the Leafs’ most effective attacking division on this occasion. The other two lines were not far behind, and the team as a whole gave a much better performance than in any previous game here this season.

The third period was only exciting in spots. The Canadiens took advantage of a penalty to Jackson, the only one of the period, to put on a five man offensive, but after boxing the Leafs up around the net for a while, and giving Chabot considerable jumping-about to do, they were never really dangerous.

The Leafs had a goal called back early in the period, when the puck went into the net off Doraty’s skate following a thrilling rush by “Happy” Day. Doraty came in fast for the rebound, but couldn’t get his stick down on the puck in time. It rebounded into his skates and back into the cage, but the officials disallowed it. There was no protest from the Leafs.

On two or three occasions, the Leafs had good scoring chances in this frame, but were turned aside by Hainsworth. He made a fine stop from Jackson near the end of the game, when the latter cut right in on him, after taking a pass from Primeau. It was one of the best opportunities Jackson had all evening, but his shot hit Hainsworth on the knee and glanced into the corner.

The game was cleanly played, the few penalties being for minor infractions. Joe Primeau got one of his rare penalties. This time, he was benched for batting the puck forward with his hand. Joe did it in more self defence than anything else, as the puck bounced up in front of him while he was in full stride, and he instinctively put his hand out to ward it off.

For the Leafs, the defence of Clancy and Horner looked particularly good. Day and Levinsky also afforded Chabot fine protection whenever they were on and did some effective rushing besides. Charlie Conacher gave the best individual display for the Leafs, while the line of Blair, Gracie and Doraty gave the liveliest display and appeared to put more action into the play than any of the others. Doraty is improving every time out.

Morenz starred for the Canadiens, with Larochelle, Lépine, Mantha and Burke being the pick of the others, outside of Hainsworth.

Story originally published in The Globe, November 25, 1932

1st Period
MTL PEN – 07:15 – Carson
MTL PEN – 12:30 – Gagnon
MTL PEN – 17:35 – Gagnon

2nd Period
TOR GOAL – 04:42 – Conacher
TOR PEN – 05:00 – Conacher
TOR PEN – 05:05 – Horner
TOR GOAL – 07:40 – Blair (Doraty)

3rd Period
TOR PEN – 01:15 – Bailey
TOR PEN – 02:00 – Clancy
MTL PEN – 12:15 – S. Mantha
TOR PEN – 15:00 – Bailey
MTL PEN – 17:15 – Leduc
TOR PEN – 19:00 – Jackson

TOR – Chabot (W + SO, 47-47)
MTL – Hainsworth (L, 64-66)

TOR – 19+26+21 = 66
MTL – 14+17+16 = 47

TORGoaltenders: Lorne Chabot. Defence: King Clancy, Hap Day (C), Red Horner, Alex Levinsky. Forwards: Ace Bailey, Andy Blair, Charlie Conacher, Baldy Cotton, Harold Darragh, Ken Doraty, Bob Gracie, Busher Jackson, Joe Primeau.
MTLGoaltenders: George Hainsworth (C). Defence: Marty Burke, Gerry Carson, Albert Leduc, Georges Mantha, Sylvio Mantha. Forwards: Johnny Gagnon, Leo Gaudreault, Aurèle Joliat, Wildor Larochelle, Pit Lépine, Armand Mondou, Howie Morenz, Paul Raymond.

TOR – 2-2-1 (.500)
MTL – 1-4-0 (.200)