Game 400 – Canadiens 4, Maple Leafs 2

Game 400
Canadiens 4, Maple Leafs 2
Thursday, October 15, 1959
Forum de Montréal, Montréal, Québec

The Montréal Canadiens, flaunting their class outrageously in the first period, defeated the determined Toronto Maple Leafs 4-2 in a National Hockey League game here tonight.

The Canadiens, perhaps a little ruffled after losing their last start, 8-4 in Boston, made it clear from the start that there would be no repeat of such a debacle in this game.

They hammered three goals past jumpy Johnny Bower in the Leafs net in the first two minutes and 20 seconds. They added their fourth goal late in the period.

The Leafs, who might have been discouraged by that overpowering thrust, fought back resolutely for the next two periods, but the poised Canadiens seemed to anticipate most of their moves. And goalkeeper Jacques Plante came through with a few big saves. The Leafs spent most of the third period in the Montréal zone, but the Canadiens shadowed them so closely that they didn’t get too many good scoring opportunities.

Henri Richard, Jean Béliveau, Marcel Bonin and Dickie Moore scored the Montréal goals. Frank Mahovlich and Bobby Pulford scored for the Leafs.

For the Leafs, it was their first loss in three games. They won their first two starts from the Chicago Black Hawks. The Canadiens have won two, tied one and lost one in their first four games.

The most impressive performers for the Canadiens were centremen Henri Richard and Béliveau. Bert Olmstead gave it a special effort for the Leafs, checking furiously throughout most of the game, but some of his mates weren’t as energetic.

Henri Richard appeared to squander several other scoring opportunities by repeatedly trying to set up his venerable brother, Maurice. But the elder Richard, in this game at least, looked like a liability to the Canadiens.

Henri opened the scoring when the game was only 17 seconds old, by cutting in from left wing and flipping a floater between Bower and the post. Bower was perhaps disconcerted by Maurice Richard, who was cruising in front awaiting a pass.

Béliveau made it 2-0 little more than a minute later, knocking in Bill Hicke’s rebound. Hicke was sprawled in the goal crease when the puck went in, but referee Vern Buffey decreed it was a legitimate goal.

Bonin made 3-0 21 seconds later, scrambling in to pick Béliveau’s rebound off the left post and ram the puck to the open side. This provoked loud gasps of glee from the crowd of 13,775, who envisioned a couple of dozen goals or so.

But the Leafs stiffened and came back to score a goal of their own at 4:07. Mahovlich pushed in Gerry Ehman’s rebound. The Canadiens got that one back on a power play, with Moore picking up a lateral from Doug Harvey, and slapping a 30-footer past Bower.

Pulford scored his goal in the third period, darting from behind the Montréal net to bank the puck in off Plante’s skate.

Story originally published in The Globe & Mail, October 16, 1959

1st Period

MTL GOAL – 00:17 – H. Richard (M. Richard, Moore)
MTL GOAL – 01:59 – Béliveau (Hicke, Bonin)
MTL GOAL – 02:20 – Bonin (Béliveau, Hicke)
TOR GOAL – 04:04 – Mahovlich (Ehman, Harris)
TOR PEN – 09:27 – Duff, tripping
TOR PEN – 15:16 – Armstrong, high sticking
MTL PP GOAL – 16:46 – Moore (Harvey, Béliveau)
TOR PEN – 19:09 – Duff, fighting major
MTL PEN – 19:09 – Turner, fighting major

2nd Period
TOR GOAL – 01:27 – Pulford
MTL PEN – 13:11 – Geoffrion, holding

3rd Period
TOR PEN – 10:26 – Olmstead, tripping
MTL PEN – 11:22 – Harvey, tripping
MTL PEN – 14:24 – Bonin, tripping

MTL – Plante (W, 34-36)
TOR – Bower (L, 34-38)

MTLGoaltenders: Jacques Plante. Defence: Doug Harvey, Tom Johnson, Albert Langlois, Jean-Guy Talbot, Bob Turner. Forwards: Ralph Backstrom, Jean Béliveau, Marcel Bonin, Bernie Geoffrion, Phil Goyette, Bill Hicke, Don Marshall, Ab McDonald, Dickie Moore, André Pronovost, Claude Provost, Henri Richard, Maurice Richard (C).
TORGoaltenders: Johnny Bower. Defence: Bobby Baun, Carl Brewer, Tim Horton, Al MacNeil, Allan Stanley. Forwards: George Armstrong (C), Dick Duff, Garry Edmundson, Gerry Ehman, Ted Hampson, Billy Harris, Frank Mahovlich, Bert Olmstead, Bob Pulford, Larry Regan, Ron Stewart, Johnny Wilson.

MTL – 2-1-1 (.625)
TOR – 2-1-0 (.667)