Game 472 – Maple Leafs 3, Canadiens 1

Game 472
Maple Leafs 3, Canadiens 1
Wednesday, November 18, 1964
Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario

Despite a deplorable lack of finesse around the net in the early stages, the Toronto Maple Leafs last night reclaimed third place in the National Hockey League by defeating the Montréal Canadiens 3-1 at the Gardens.

The victory was the Leafs’ first in three games against the Canadiens this season, and left them one point behind Montréal and two in arrears of the league-leading Detroit Red Wings. Detroit has played one game more than Montréal and Toronto.

The Canadiens played without centre Henri Richard and defenceman Jacques Laperrière. And centre Jean Béliveau, bothered by a groin injury, made only two brief appearances.

The Leafs had all their casualties except Frank Mahovlich playing regular shifts. Normally the Leafs are challenged to keep pace with the fast, young Montréalers. But on this occasion, they not only outchecked and outmuscled the Habs, but for most of the game outskated them as well.

However, despite these major advantages, they were unable to take the lead until the 40th minute and didn’t have a two goal cushion until the final minute of play.

Centre Bob Pulford scored both those goals, the winner coming against a Canadiens power play. Goalie Terry Sawchuk, unbeaten in six games in the Leafs’ goal, saved against John Ferguson and cleared the puck to Brewer. Pulford fielded Brewer’s perfect pass near centre ice, faked one defenceman, then looped a backhander off defenceman Ted Harris’ stick. The puck flipped over Charlie Hodge’s left shoulder.

Sawchuk received an assist on the goal, the first point for a goaltender this season.

Rookie Ron Ellis set up Pulford’s second goal, scored with 25 seconds remaining. With Jim Roberts draped around his shoulders, he left the puck in front, drawing Hodge out of the net. Pulford, closing rapidly, punched the puck into the open net.

The Leafs’ dogged forechecking in the centre ice area had prevented the Canadiens from replacing Hodge with a sixth attacker.

Eddie Shack, deservedly named as the third star behind Pulford and the Habs’ Claude Provost, masterminded the first Leaf goal, scored by Andy Bathgate. It tied the game 1-1 and also was scored in the last minute of a period, the first.

Shack roared out of the penalty chute, pasted Dave Balon to the boards behind the Toronto goal, and came out with the puck instead of another penalty. He beat two Canadiens before reaching centre ice. When he crossed the Montréal blueline, he faked Proovst with a push-pass, regained the puck himself, and gave Bathgate a perfect pass. The former Ranger, restored to his normal post of right wing for this game, lashed a backhander to the far corner.

It was the type of play Shack so often starts, but so infrequently finishes, and the gallery of 14,174 gave him a prolonged salute.

The rambunctious winger continued his improved play and by the second intermission had relegated Don McKenney to occasional power play appearances. Shack played with George Armstrong at centre and Ellis.

Shack also had an oblique role in the winning goal. Again coming from the penalty box, he appeared to be heading for the Leaf bench when a play developed and he entered it. His replacement was trapped and the Leafs were penalized for having too many men on the ice. While Larry Hillman served that one, Pulford scored the winning goal.

Ferguson was the Montréal marksman, scoring within two minutes of the opening faceoff. Defenceman Allan Stanley, playing with a broken toe, was trapped up ice and the Canadiens got a three-on-one break. Ferguson didn’t even fake a pass, but whipped a drop shot into the short side off Sawchuk’s glove.

Story originally published in The Globe & Mail, November 19, 1964

1st Period

MTL GOAL – 01:28 – Ferguson (J. Tremblay)
MTL PEN – 07:08 – Larose, hooking
MTL PEN – 12:36 – Harper, delay of game
TOR PEN – 17:19 – Shack, holding
TOR GOAL – 19:39 – Bathgate (Shack)

2nd Period
TOR PEN – 02:13 – Brewer, cross checking
MTL PEN – 07:40 – Ferguson, hooking
TOR PEN – 16:54 – Shack, elbowing
MTL PEN – 17:21 – J. Tremblay, cross checking
TOR PEN – 19:03 – team, too many men on the ice
TOR SH GOAL – 19:49 – Pulford (Brewer, Sawchuk)

3rd Period
TOR PEN – 04:49 – Baun, tripping
MTL PEN – 13:07 – Ferguson, holding
TOR GOAL – 19:35 – Pulford (Ellis, Baun)

TOR – Sawchuk (W, 25-26)
MTL – Hodge (L, 30-33)

TOR – 13+14+6 = 33
MTL – 10+9+7 = 26

TORGoaltenders: Terry Sawchuk. Defence: Bobby Baun, Carl Brewer, Kent Douglas, Larry Hillman, Tim Horton, Red Kelly, Allan Stanley. Forwards: George Armstrong (C), Andy Bathgate, Ron Ellis, Billy Harris, Dave Keon, Don McKenney, Dickie Moore, Jim Pappin, Bob Pulford, Eddie Shack, Ron Stewart.
MTLGoaltenders: Charlie Hodge. Defence: Terry Harper, Ted Harris, Jim Roberts, Jean-Guy Talbot, J.C. Tremblay. Forwards: Ralph Backstrom, Dave Balon, Jean Béliveau (C), Yvan Cournoyer, John Ferguson, Bill Hicke, Claude Larose, Garry Peters, Claude Provost, Bobby Rousseau, Gilles Tremblay.

TOR – 6-5-4 (.533)
MTL – 6-4-5 (.567)