Game 401 – Maple Leafs 1, Canadiens 1

Game 401
Maple Leafs 1, Canadiens 1
Wednesday, October 28, 1959
Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario

The Montréal Canadiens, who were supposed to be reeling in fatigue with their fourth game in five nights, gambolled friskily to a 1-1 tie with the Maple Leafs in the Gardens last night.

And it was decrepit, old Maurice Richard, an obstinate fellow who refuses to retire gracefully, who scored the Canadiens’ only goal in the first period. Dick Duff, on one superlative thrust, tied it for the Leafs early in the third period.

This was a vigorous, heavy checking game, played at high speed most of the time. The Leafs had the determination, but the Canadiens had better puck control. And although the Leafs outshot the Canadiens 28-25, the Leafs blew a great many scoring opportunities through wild shooting.

Both goalkeepers, Johnny Bower of the Leafs and the Canadiens’ flamboyant Jacques Plante played excellent games. Plante was run down twice in the heavy traffic, but each time he recovered.

A crowd of 14,571 (21 more than the Gardens capacity) saw the Canadiens stretch their unbeaten string to six games (five wins and one tie). It was also the fifth successive game that the artistic Plante has held his opposition to one goal.

Late in the first period, Plante was almost knocked out after a spectacular goalmouth collision with the Leafs’ flying Johnny Wilson. Wilson, cutting in front of the Canadiens goal, was steered into the leaping Plante by Montréal defenceman Guy Talbot. The impact sent Plante flying in the air and when he landed, he bumped his head on the ice. But he recovered after executing a few deep knee bends.

He was smacked again the second period by Frank Mahovlich behind the Montréal net. But Plante jumped to his feet quickly this time, without even a grimace.

Mighty Maurice scored his third goal of the season, and the 528th of his 18 year reign, in the first period, and he did it with his customary swoosh and swish.

Brother Henri, who was being impeded by Leaf defenceman Tim Horton, started the play by sliding a pass to Dickie Moore in the Leafs zone. Moore lured the Leafs’ other defenceman, Allan Stanley, to one side, and tossed a perfect pass to Maurice, who lashed a backhander in the net from about 10 feet out.

Maurice was in a similar position a couple of minutes later, but this time Bower seemed to collapse in all directions at once to smother the shot.

Duff tied the score on a magnificent effort in the third period. He picked up the puck halfway between the centre red line and the Montréal blue, and set sail. Henri Richard tried to catch him, but he was left behind. Duff eluded Doug Harvey at the Montréal blue line, wore Tom Johnson for a few strides before he shook him off, and darted in close from right wing (his wrong one) and cuffed the puck in the short side.

The Leafs lengthened their own undefeated streak to three with this tie. They have won one and tied two of their last three games. And in four games at home, they have won two and tied two.

NOTES: Bob Pulford, with his powerful skating and checking, put plenty of muscle into the Leafs’ attack. He made some of his better plays as a penalty killer. But he may have established the trend for the Leafs’ erratic shooting early in the first period. Pulford missed the net twice from close in on his first shift…Gerry Ehman missed the net on a setup pass from Bert Olmstead in the second period, and Larry Regan struck out on George Armstrong’s rebound in the third…Bower made great stops in the third period on Jean Béliveau and Bernie Geoffrion…The Canadiens’ André Pronovost and Mahovlich had an accidental level crossing crash in the third period. Mahovlich had to go to the dressing room to have facial cuts repaired…Another heavy jolt was dealt by Montréal defenceman Junior Langlois in the first period. He decked Ted Hampson, who was skating with his head down…Maurice Richard and Talbot were tagged with misconduct penalties during the game for giving their unsolicited opinions about Montréal penalties.

Story originally published in The Globe & Mail, October 29, 1959

1st Period

MTL PEN – 04:31 – Harvey, interference
MTL GOAL – 11:06 – M. Richard (Moore, H. Richard)
TOR PEN – 13:26 – Brewer, holding
MTL PEN – 19:15 – Talbot, tripping + misconduct

2nd Period
TOR PEN – 07:42 – Baun, kneeing
TOR PEN – 13:03 – Baun, high sticking
MTL PEN – 13:03 – McDonald, high sticking
MTL PEN – 17:52 – Talbot, holding
MTL PEN – 17:52 – M. Richard, misconduct

3rd Period
TOR PEN – 01:10 – Horton, tripping
MTL PEN – 03:48 – Talbot, tripping
TOR GOAL – 05:49 – Duff (Armstrong, Pulford)

TOR – Bower (T, 24-25)
MTL – Plante (T, 27-28)

TOR – 3+16+9 = 28
MTL – 5+8+12 = 25

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

TOR – 4-2-2 (.625)
MTL – 7-2-2 (.727)