Game 177 – Maple Leafs 3, Canadiens 1

Game 177
Maple Leafs 3, Canadiens 1
Saturday, December 6, 1941
Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario

Rookie Paul Bibeault didn’t lead the Montréal Canadiens out of the hockey wilderness Saturday night at Maple Leaf Gardens, but he provided a solid netminding background for the hard-pressed Irvinites.

The presence of Bibeault in the nets seemed to give the National Hockey League basement boys a new lease of life, and they at least went down fighting. The Leafs beat them 3-1 to climb back into a first place tie with the Boston Bruins.

A bad piece of hockey luck cost the Montréalers a goal early in the first period and they never got it back, despite an impressive display of aggressiveness. The Leafs had a 1-0 margin in the opening chapter when defenceman Jack Portland of the Canadiens whammed the puck into his own cage while trying to clear a rebound of Nick Metz’s shot. The official scorer added an assist for Bob Davidson on the play.

The teams went through a scoreless second period, and well into the third before the scoring gong again. Just to keep his record straight, Dave Schriner made it 2-0 for the Leafs on a play with Taylor and Carr. Quilty scored off a pass from Portland, and then Carr was back with the third Toronto goal off Schriner’s rebound. The smooth working Schriner has been consistently more successful in producing goals or setting up scoring plays against the Canadiens than any other NHL club.

Late in the third period, Dave weaved his way past the Montréal forward and defence patrols for a wide open play on Bibeault, but the rookie puck stopper outfoxed him. Bibeault, subbing for Bert Gardiner, arrived in Toronto Saturday by plane from Washington, where he had been guarding the nets for Ching Johnson’s American Hockey League club.

Montréal’s “razzle dazzle” line of Heffernan, Morin and O’Connor performed well in its Toronto professional debut.

The Leafs were without the services of Syl Apps and Wally Stanowski. Nick Metz worked as centre for Drillon and Davidson, while Church teamed with Kampman on the defence.

The official scorer booked Turk Broda with 37 saves during the evening, and only 29 for Bibeault.

Billy Taylor and Terry Reardon threatened to steal the limelight in the third period with a private feud that was only a couple of jumps short of a toe-to-toe slugging match.

The Saturday night attendance count was 10,531.

Story originally published in The Globe & Mail, December 8, 1941

1st Period
TOR GOAL – 07:45 – N. Metz (Davidson)

TOR PENS – Church, Davidson, Schriner
MTL PENS – Benoit, Blake, Goupille

2nd Period
MTL PEN – Blake

3rd Period
MTL GOAL – 01:03 – Quilty (Portland)
TOR GOAL – 05:04 – Carr (Schriner)

TOR GOAL – 08:35 – Schriner (Taylor, Carr)

TOR – Broda (W, 37-38)
MTL – Bibeault (L, 29-32)

TORGoaltenders: Turk Broda. Defence: Jack Church, Reg Hamilton, Bingo Kampman, Bucko McDonald. Forwards: Lorne Carr, Bob Davidson, Gordie Drillon, Hank Goldup, Pete Langelle, John McCreedy, Nick Metz, Sweeney Schriner, Billy Taylor.
MTLGoaltenders: Paul Bibeault. Defence: Red Goupille, Jack Portland, Ken Reardon. Forwards: Joe Benoit, Toe Blake (C), Bunny Dame, Ray Getliffe, Tony Graboski, Gerry Heffernan, Pete Morin, Buddy O’Connor, John Quilty, Terry Reardon, Charlie Sands.

TOR – 9-3-0 (.750)
MTL – 1-9-1 (.136)