Maple Leafs 3, Canadiens 3
Saturday, February 11, 1939
Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario
Les Canadiens of Montréal, the National Hockey League tail enders, looked every inch the part until late in the third period of a poor game at Maple Leaf Gardens Saturday night. Trailing the Leafs by 3 to 1, and rather lucky that it was not at least 6 to 1, the harassed Habitants suddenly came to life with a two goal outburst that required only twenty two seconds and got them a 3-all tie.
The Canadiens came out of the sloppy shinny with a split in the points and also, judging by the reaction of the 9,957 paid onlookers, with more prestige than the Maple Leafs, who once again bogged down in a game that they should have won with ease.
The contest, which provided the home fans with the season’s worst all-round display of NHL pasttiming, was highlighted by goalie Cude’s great work in keeping the Leafs off the score sheet in the third period. He was so good that the Toronto team supporters cheered him more than once. The Maples had blown a 3 to 0 lead, and the crowd did not like that fact. The final verdict of 3 to 3 can be written into the annals of the lordly Leafs as one of their disgraces.
The first period can be summed up as follows: no scoring, no penalties, no hockey. The Canadiens put on a scream-lined exhibition of check-check and slap-slap from blue to blue line – and it wasn’t long until the Leafs followed suit. The period was almost over before either goalie had to make a real save.
Stung by criticism, the Toronto team really bored in and got going in the second stanza, most of which was played in the Frenchmen’s defence area. Came four minutes of ganging, and Kelly whipped a low shot through both Siebert and Cude for the first goal. Parsons and Horner drew assists.
After play had been held up, referee Ion got first aid for two of his fingers that were cut by his whistle in a tumble into the boards. The Leafs scored again just past the eleven minute mark. Metz circled in from the right flank and fired a terrific shot into the twine.
Romnes and Kampman had built up the play. Less than five minutes later, Apps tallied from right in front of a finish criscross passing play set up by McDonald’s sparkling rush. The Flying Frenchmen appeared to be definitely grounded, and the score, not the Frenchies, gave promise of soaring.
The 3-0 count, however, finally spurred the Canadiens into turning on a bit of pressure, and they bagged a goal only fourty-four seconds later. Cain tossed the rubber home, with Ward and Siebert assisting after Broda had pulled off a couple of close-in saves.
The Montréalers did considerable pressing of the scramble sort in the early part of the third period, but instead of creating scoring chances for themselves, they mostly provided breakaways for the Leafs. But either the Leafian snipers had gone off the gold standard or else goalie Cude had gone back to his palmy days as a rubber repeller. Anyway, as an instance of it all, Drillon on two solo breakaways with only the goalie to beat, could not connect.
Around the 16 minute mark, the Leafs suddenly cracked behind their blue line. Siebert’s low shot whistled through a maze of legs past Broda after Buswell and Haynes had helped in the ganging. Only twenty two seconds later, Blake staged one of his hard driving assaults. Although detoured away from the cage, he slid a neat pass over to the uncovered Gagnon, who easily tied the score from short range. The Leafs tried hard in an overtime session that produced better than usual action, but the Habitants managed to hold them out.
Story originally published in The Globe & Mail, February 13, 1939
TOR GOAL – 04:21 – Kelly (Parsons, Horner)
TOR GOAL – 11:01 – Metz (Romnes, Kampman)
TOR GOAL – 15:37 – Apps (McDonald)
MTL GOAL – 16:08 – Cain (Ward, Siebert)
MTL GOAL – 15:59 – Siebert (Buswell, Haynes)
MTL GOAL – 16:20 – Gagnon (Blake)
TOR – Broda (T)
MTL – Cude (T)
TOR – Goaltenders: Turk Broda. Defence: Jimmy Fowler, Reg Hamilton, Red Horner (C), Bingo Kampman, Bucko McDonald. Forwards: Syl Apps, Murph Chamberlain, Bob Davidson, Gordie Drillon, Busher Jackson, Pep Kelly, Gus Marker, Nick Metz, George Parsons, Doc Romnes.
MTL – Goaltenders: Wilf Cude. Defence: Walter Buswell, Stewart Evans, Des Smith, Cy Wentworth. Forwards: Toe Blake, Herb Cain, Polly Drouin, Johnny Gagnon, Paul Haynes, Rod Lorrain, Armand Mondou, Babe Siebert (C), Bill Summerhill, Lou Trudel, Jimmy Ward.
TOR – 12-17-7 (.431)
MTL – 8-19-7 (.338)