Game 481 – Canadiens 2, Maple Leafs 2

Game 481
Canadiens 2, Maple Leafs 2
Thursday, March 4, 1965
Forum de Montréal, Montréal, Québec

The Toronto Maple Leafs settled for a 2-2 tie with the Montréal Canadiens last night, thanks to Gump Worsley’s alert goaltending and their own inability to capitalize on some excellent scoring opportunities.

Despite squandering enough chances to win twice, the Leafs did interrupt their latest slump, taking their first National Hockey League point in five games.

The Canadiens’ share of the tie moved them into second place, two points behind the Chicago Black Hawks and one ahead of the Detroit Red Wings. The Leafs trail the Wings by five.

Claude Provost’s 25th goal of the season, scored on a third period power play, provided the tie for Montréal as the Canadiens twice came from behind before the Forum’s largest crowd this season, 15,676.

Jean Béliveau, with his best game in some time, got their other goal. It was only his eighth.

Frank Mahovlich, who had nine of the Leafs’ 27 shots on goal, opened the scoring with the Canadiens a man short in the first period and Don McKenney, recently repatriated from Rochester, showed his appreciation by supplying a 2-1 lead before the second intermission.

The goals were “The Big M”‘s 19th, McKenney’s fourth.

It appeared as if McKenney’s goal might stand up as a winner as the Leafs outplayed the Canadiens and Terry Sawchuk continued his adept play in the Leafs’ goal through half the second period and 12 minutes of the third.

However, after Carl Brewer had saved one shot, Provost whacked the puck from behind and to one side of the Toronto goal. The puck rebounded off a skate, possibly Sawchuk’s, and into the short side. The Leafs’ Kent Douglas was off for hooking.

Sawchuk, who made 31 stops, had no chance at all on Béliveau’s goal. Brewer, Bob Baun and George Armstrong all had opportunities to clear the puck, but didn’t. Finally Bobby Rousseau threw the puck to the lanky Béliveau, who was alone in front. He toyed with the helpless goalie for a second, then punched the puck into a corner.

Mahovlich had scored with Ralph Backstrom off for tripping. Andy Bathgate forced Worsley to one side of the net, then Red Kelly took the rebound behind the net and passed to the open side to The Big M. He merely had to tip it over the goal line.

Allan Stanley’s pass to McKenney started the Leafs’ other scoring play. McKenney gave the puck to Dave Keon, reclaimed it, and whipped a shot past one defenceman and between Worsley’s pads.

The Leafs, employing Mahovlich on double shifts most of the time in order to play four lines, started the game strongly and kept the puck in Montréal territory most of the first 10 minutes. But Worsley, playing for the first time in eight games, was as sharp as if he had been in all along.

He stopped The Big M twice, Baun, George Armstrong then Keon with major saves before Mahovlich tallied at 15:20. Keon and Mahovlich in the second period, Bathgate and The Big M in the third, also had great chances. On another occasion, Mahovlich threw the puck behind Worsley, but no Leaf was in the goal area to redirect it home.

Overall this was a game of excellent goaltending. Sawchuk robbed Dave Balon, Provost and Backstrom in the opening period, Dickie Duff, John Ferguson and Backstrom in the second, and Claude Larose, Balon, Backstrom and Provost in the third.

He was fortunate in the final seconds when Henri Richard had him beaten, but missed an open corner and hit the post. “The Pocket Rocket” was so perturbed he broke his stick over his knee.

The Leafs took six of the 11 minors imposed by referee John Ashley in a tough, but not particularly belligerent match. They also served two misconducts, Brewer for banging his stick on the ice to protest a first period hooking call, and Bathgate for invading the referee’s crease to object to Baun’s holding sentence in the second.

NOTES: Ron Ellis, Bob Pulford and Red Kelly were Leaf forwards who didn’t get a shot on goal…Béliveau and Balon were the Habs’ most accurate, each with five…Bell Telephone is producing a circular screen film for Expo ’67 and in the early moments, a special 360-degree camera was suspended only 10 feet over the ice…The Leafs have lost only once in six games at the Forum this season…Manager-coach Punch Imlach spent most of the day here fighting the flu…The Leafs had a 3-on-1 break early in the final period, but Ron Stewart tripped as he took the pass…On Ferguson’s last period penalty, the Leafs were guilty of some careless play and Jim Roberts had two chances. Earlier with the Habs short, Keon lost control of the puck on a breakaway.

Story originally published in The Globe & Mail, March 5, 1965

1st Period

TOR PEN – 06:08 – Brewer, hooking + misconduct
MTL PEN – 15:06 – Backstrom, tripping
TOR PP GOAL – 15:20 – Mahovlich (Kelly, Bathgate)
TOR PEN – 16:30 – Douglas, roughing
MTL PEN – 16:30 – Richard, roughing

2nd Period
MTL GOAL – 01:39 – Béliveau (Rousseau, Tremblay)
TOR PEN – 04:13 – Baun, holding
TOR PEN – 04:13 – Bathgate, misconduct
TOR GOAL – 09:01 – McKenney (Keon, Stanley)
MTL PEN – 19:00 – Duff, slashing

3rd Period
MTL PEN – 04:30 – Ferguson, slashing
TOR PEN – 10:10 – Douglas, hooking
MTL PP GOAL – 12:03 – Provost (Ferguson, Richard)
TOR PEN – 15:51 – Shack, roughing
MTL PEN – 15:51 – Richard, high sticking
TOR PEN – 17:02 – Mahovlich, holding

MTL – Worsley (T, 25-27)
TOR – Sawchuk (T, 31-33)

MTL – 8+11+14 = 33
TOR – 9+8+10 = 27

MTLGoaltenders: Gump Worsley. Defence: Terry Harper, Ted Harris, Jacques Laperrière, Noel Picard, Jim Roberts, Jean-Guy Talbot, J.C. Tremblay. Forwards: Ralph Backstrom, Dave Balon, Jean Béliveau (C), Dick Duff, John Ferguson, Claude Larose, Claude Provost, Henri Richard, Bobby Rousseau.
TORGoaltenders: Terry Sawchuk. Defence: Bobby Baun, Carl Brewer, Kent Douglas, Tim Horton, Red Kelly, Allan Stanley. Forwards: George Armstrong (C), Andy Bathgate, Ron Ellis, Dave Keon, Frank Mahovlich, Don McKenney, Bob Pulford, Eddie Shack, Pete Stemkowski, Ron Stewart.

MTL – 29-19-11 (.585)
TOR – 25-21-13 (.534)