Game 229 – Canadiens 1, Maple Leafs 1

Game 229
Canadiens 1, Maple Leafs 1
Thursday, January 16, 1947
Forum de Montréal, Montréal, Québec

Toronto’s weary but ever-fighting Maple Leafs battled the world champion Montréal Canadiens to a 1-1 stalemate before a roaring, record crowd for the season at the Forum tonight.

It was a typical bruising struggle between the arch rivals that was slowed somewhat by 20 minor penalties – 11 for the homesters and 9 for the Leafs.

Hard on a rousing 2-1 victory by the injury-riddled Toronto club over the Habitants in Toronto last night, the draw left the Leafs atop the National Hockey League with a nine point margin over the Canucks. The Leafs have yet to beat Dick Irvin’s Habs in Montréal this season, and the teams are tied in their six games, each having won two, lost two and tied two.

Toronto, playing with 14 men, including only a three man defence corps, against the top strength Canadien squad of 16, surprised even their few supporters here by taking a one goal lead on a bullet drive by Bud Poile just two and a half minutes after the opening whistle. The visitors held on desperately until near the seven minute mark of the final frame, when a miscue by hard working rearguard Gus Mortson allowed Bobby Fillion to pop in the equalizer. He grabbed the puck on Turk Broda’s doorstep.

Both goaltenders, Broda and the hunk of ice, Bill Durnan, pulled off sensational saves in every period, that had the record crowd of 12,066, including hundreds who packed every available inch of standing room yelling, jumping and screaming. They screamed too at referee King Clancy who, determined that this game wouldn’t get out of hand, started waving players to the penalty bench early, and kept a continuous stream heading that way throughout the tilt. Howie Meeker, the Leafs’ fiery little rookie, took four minors, two of them along with giant Butch Bouchard after high sticking duels.

Mortson, who last night suffered a two stitch cut in his head when struck by Bouchard’s stick, played a terrific game, along with his 19 year old partner, Jim Thomson, and the veteran Wally Stanowski.

His miscue that gave Fillion the puck came like this: the Canadiens were pressing, and Gus was attempting to clear from behind the net. He shot the puck directly onto the stick of Fillion, who came from nowhere at a mile-a-minute clip. Broda had no chance on his snap shot.

The first Leaf tally – the only goal of the penalty filled, lightning fast first period – came on a play set up by Wally Stanowski and Jimmy Thomson. With the hardrock Murph Chamberlain and fiery Billy Reay in penitence for the Habitants, Thomson trapped the puck just inside the Canadien defence zone and whipped a fast pass over to Stanowski. Wally, in turn, slipped the puck over to Poile, who was standing unguarded 30 feet out. Bud’s terrific drive, partially screened, went by Durnan knee high.

The penitence parade continued throughout the scoreless second period, in which action slowed down at times and lines were changed at quick intervals. The Leafs appeared the more tired.

At one time during the middle frame, there were three players sitting out penalties – two of them Habitants – as Clancy, who let nothing escape his eagle eye, issued a total of seven, four to the red-jerseyed Canadiens.

Just as in the opening frame, fisticuffs threatened more than once. Stanowski and Glen Harmon of the Canadiens went off near the end of the period after a high sticking duel, in which Wally appeared really mad for one of the few times this season.

The closest the Canucks came to getting back that Leaf goal in the second period was in the closing seconds, when Maurice Richard rocketed right in, and let go a drive that had Broda beaten. It hit the post, bounced back a few feet and was cleared by a defenceman, while Broda looked for it vainly.

Story originally published in The Globe & Mail, January 17, 1947

1st Period
MTL PEN – 01:20 – Chamberlain
MTL PEN – 02:10 – Reay
TOR PP2 GOAL – 02:30 – Poile (Thomson, Stanowski)
MTL PEN – 03:58 – Bouchard
TOR PEN – 05:17 – Meeker
TOR PEN – 07:41 – Mortson
MTL PEN – 11:52 – Reay
TOR PEN – 14:54 – Thomson
MTL PEN – 16:52 – Lach
TOR PEN – 17:28 – Meeker
TOR PEN – 18:12 – N. Metz

2nd Period
MTL PEN – 03:56 – Peters
MTL PEN – 05:52 – Reardon
TOR PEN – 05:52 – Meeker
TOR PEN – 14:43 – Thomson
MTL PEN – 14:53 – Richard
MTL PEN – 17:21 – Harmon
TOR PEN – 17:21 – Stanowski

3rd Period
MTL PEN – 04:30 – Lach
MTL GOAL – 06:37 – Fillion
MTL PEN – 10:14 – Bouchard
TOR PEN – 10:14 – Meeker

MTL – Durnan (T)
TOR – Broda (T)

MTLGoaltenders: Bill Durnan. Defence: Butch Bouchard, Glen Harmon, Roger Leger, Ken Reardon. Forwards: George Allen, Toe Blake (C), Murph Chamberlain, Bob Fillion, Léo Gravelle, Elmer Lach, Leo Lamoureux, Buddy O’Connor, Jimmy Peters, Billy Reay, Maurice Richard.
TORGoaltenders: Turk Broda. Defence: Gus Mortson, Wally Stanowski, Jimmy Thomson. Forwards: Syl Apps (C), Gus Bodnar, Bill Ezinicki, Ted Kennedy, Joe Klukay, Howie Meeker, Don Metz, Nick Metz, Bud Poile, Gaye Stewart.

MTL – 19-11-4 (.618)
TOR – 23-8-5 (.708)