Monday, 29 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 29th Edition

 

ClaudeLemieux86 (2)

Claude Lemieux scores the Game Seven winner in vs. Hartford, April 29, 1986. (Photo: Denis Brodeur, CHC)

 

1973: Jacques Lemaire scored twice and added two assists as the Canadiens won 8-3 against the Chicago Black Hawks in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Finals. Habs captain
Henri Richard tied brother Maurice and Red Kelly for the Stanley Cup record with his 12th appearance in the Finals.

Sunday, 28 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 28th Edition

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Rox Hextall and Stephane Fiset congratulate Jacques Demers and Patrick Roy (Photo: Denis Brodeur, CHC)

 

Today marks Step One complete in the Montreal Canadiens quest for the Stanley Cup, in 1993. On this night the Habs moved onto the Adams Division Finals with a 6-2 win over the Quebec Nordiques. After falling behind 2-0 in the series, the Canadiens battled back, winning the next four games.

 

Paul DiPietro, playing in his 3rd playoff game, had 3 goals and added an assist to lead the Canadiens in scoring. DiPietro found himself in the line-up, following an injury to Stephan Lebeau.

 

Sadly, it was the last time the Canadiens and Nordiques, who had made the post-season for the first time since 1987,  would meet in the playoffs.

 

A clip of the closing moments of the game, and a post-game interview with Patrick Roy, can be seen below.

 

Saturday, 27 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 27th Edition

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(Photo: Getty Images)

 

1967: Jean Beliveau scored two goals against the Toronto Maple Leafs, during a 6-2 Canadiens' victory in Game Four of the Stanley Cup Finals. The two goals gave him 128 total playoff points and put him past Maurice Richard into second place behind Gordie Howe on the all-time playoff point list.

 

1971: Beliveau had three assists in a 6-1 Habs win against the Minnesota North Stars in Game Five of the Semi-Finals. “Le Gros Bill” set a career playoff record for most assists -- 92, one more than the previous record held by Gordie Howe.

Friday, 26 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 26th Edition

(Photo:Ryan Remiorz, AP/CP)

2006: Saku Koivu’s left eye is injured in Game Three of the Eastern Conference Quarter-Finals against the Carolina Hurricanes. Koivu suffered a torn retina, from an errant stick by the Hurricane’s Justin Wiliams in the second period, and missed the rest of the playoffs.

Thursday, 25 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 25th Edition

 

1994: Patrick Roy stopped 60 shots and Kirk Muller scored at 17:18 of OT (after picking up an earlier assist) to give Montreal a 2-1 win at Boston, in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Quarter-Finals. It was Montreal's 11th straight OT win, an NHL record.

 

Habs Born On This Day: Rene Joliat (1898), Alexei Emelin (1986)

 

Sources:

www.hhof.com

www.sihrhockey.org

Wednesday, 24 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 24th Edition

Beliveau-69winner (2)

1969: Jean Beliveau (pictured) scored at 11:28  of the second overtime period for the only overtime goal of his playoff career to give Montreal a 2-1 victory over the Boston Bruins. The win clinched the Stanley Cup Semi-Final Series four games to two.

"I thought we'd lost possession," Beliveau said following the game. "I turned back ready to head for our own end and then I saw Joe (Provost) come up with the puck.

"It was a perfect pass from that old guy over there," he joked, pointing in the direction of Provost, two years his junior. "I gave a little yell and the puck was there. I had no time to think or make a fancy shot. I just let it go and it went in."

Beliveau also picked up an assist on the night. Goaltender Rogie Vachon made 50 saves against the Bruins.


Francis Bouchard was able to provide a clip of the winning goal.

Tuesday, 23 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 23 Edition

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Tony Esposito turns 70 today- (Photo A Breed Apart – Douglas Hunter)

 

1919: An electrical fire consumes the Canadiens’ home rink, The Jubilee Arena. The club would relocate to the Mount Royal Arena.

 

1978: Guy Lafleur scored twice and added three assists, and Ken Dryden recorded his 9th career playoff shutout as the Canadiens won 8-0 over the Detroit Red Wings, in Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Quarter-Finals, for their sixth straight playoff road win (over two years).

 

1991: Shayne Corson scored two goals and added two assists as the Canadiens won 6-2 over the Boston Bruins, at the Forum in Game 4 of the Adams Division Finals.

 

Habs Born on This Day: Tony Esposito (1943), Ryan Walter (1958), Claude Julien (coach, 1963), Patrick Poulin (1973)

Monday, 22 April 2013

Today In Habs History: April 22nd Edition

With speculation of a potential Habs-Leafs playoffs matchup in 2013, it’s appropriate to note that this day in 1979 marks the last post-season faceoff between these two Original Six teams.

Coming off three straight Stanley Cups, and falling just a point behind the up and coming New York Islanders for first place overall, the Canadiens earned a bye into the Quarter Finals.

The Leafs were looking for retribution from a 4-0 series sweep at the hands of the Habs in the ‘78 Semi-Finals, and had a late regular season surge to ensure another playoff berth. After dispatching the Atlanta Flames in two straight games, they looked ahead to their long-time rivals.

Sunday, 21 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 21st Edition

 

1938: Toe Blake scored the winning goal in overtime, as Montreal beat the Detroit Red Wings 5-4 before a crowd of 8,000 in Earls Court, England, in the first of a nine game tour of England and France between the two teams.

 

Detroit coach Jack Adams addressed the crowd prior to and during the game, explaining some of the differences in rules between the NHL and the British Ice Hockey Association. English fans got to see some minor skirmishes, hits and even a penalty shot, according to the April 22, 1938 report from La Patrie. A dozen penalties were given out, including a five-minute misconduct to Detroit’s Hec Kilrea, who maintained his innocence as he skated to the the penalty box,

Saturday, 20 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 20th Edition

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Maurice Richard and Jean Beliveau with the Stanley Cup (Photo: AP)

1958: Bernie Geoffrion scored twice and added an assist as the Canadiens beat the Boston Bruins 5-3 in Game 6 of the Finals.

It was the tenth Cup in franchise history and the Canadiens third straight, equalling the NHL record set by Toronto from 1946-47 through 1948-49.

Some video clips of the series follow.

Friday, 19 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 19th Edition

 

1975: Ken Dryden recorded his second career playoff shutout in the Canadiens' 4-0 win over the Vancouver Canucks,  in Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Quarter-Finals.

 

1980: Michel "Bunny" Larocque recorded the only shutout of his playoff career to lead the Canadiens to a 5-0 win over the Minnesota North Stars, in Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Quarter-Finals.

 

1986:  Guy Carbonneau scored twice as the Canadiens won 3-1 over the Hartford Whalers, in Game 2 of the Adams Division Finals.

 

1989: Pat Burns became just the second coach in Stanley Cup history to win his first six playoff games when Bobby Smith scored the winner at 12:24 of OT in a 3-2 win over the Boston Bruins Bruins, in Game 2 of the Adams Division Finals.

 

1991: Stephane Richer scored two goals, including the winner at 0:27 of overtime to lead the Canadiens to a 4-3 win against Boston, in Game 2 of the Adams Division Finals.

 

1992: Rookie Gilbert Dionne scored twice, and Patrick Roy recorded his 5th career playoff shutout as the Canadiens beat the Whalers 2-0 in Game 1 of the Adams Division Semi-Finals.

 

2004: Jose Theodore recorded his first career playoff shutout in the Montreal's 2-0 win over the Bruins, in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Quarter-Finals. It was only the fourth game 7 road shutout in NHL playoff history.

 

Habs Born on This Day: Garry Blaine (1933), Luc Gauthier (1964)

 

Sources:

 

www.hhof.com

www.sihrhockey.org

Thursday, 18 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 18th Edition

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Photo: HHOF

 

1959: The Montreal Canadiens became the first team ever to win four consecutive Stanley Cup Championships, with a 5-3 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs in Game Five of the Finals.

 

With Jean Beliveau and Maurice Richard out with injuries, rookie Ralph Backstrom stepped up and led the scoring with a goal and three assists. Three of his four points came in the first period.

 

It was the Canadiens’ 11th Stanley Cup Championship.

 

A couple video clips of the HNIC telecast (put together by Francis Bouchard) feature game highlights and a brief segment of the players celebrating their victory.

 

Wednesday, 17 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 17th Edition

 

 

1958: Maurice Richard led Montreal to a 3-2 win against the Boston Bruins in Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Finals, with an overtime goal at 5:45. It was Richard's sixth career overtime goal in the Stanley Cup playoffs. The Canadiens went on to win the Cup in six games.

 

1973: Larry Robinson scored the first playoff goal of his NHL career at 6:45 of overtime to give the Canadiens a 4-3 win over the Philadelphia Flyers, in Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Semi-Finals. Robinson became the 2nd NHL rookie defenseman to get an OT goal.

 

1978: Rejean Houle scored a goal and added three assists as the Canadiens won 6-2 over the Detroit Red Wings, in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Quarter-Finals.

 

1995: Mark Recchi picked up four assists, and Pierre Turgeon scored his 11th career hat trick (and his first with Montreal) in the Canadiens' 5-2 win against the Washington Capitals.

 

Habs Born On This Day: Gerry McNeil (1926)

 

Sources:

www.hhof.com

www.sihrhockey.org

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Today In Habs History: April 16th Edition

Bruins captain Milt Schmidt watches as Elmer Lach and Maruice Ricard celebrate Lach’s Game Five overtime Cup winner on April 16, 1953. (Photo: Roger St-Jean, La Presse Archives)

 

Certainly another memorable image from Canadiens history comes from this day in 1953 as Maurice Richard and Elmer Lach celebrated the latter’s overtime winner, against the Boston Bruins in Game Five of the Finals, to win the Stanley Cup.

Monday, 15 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 15th Edition

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A quiet day on the history front, as playoff season begins to open some down time in the history ledger.

So with that, birthday wishes to former Habs center Keith Acton (pictured), who turns 55 today. Acton played five seasons with the Canadiens, his best in 1981-82 when he centered Guy Lafleur and Steve Shutt and scored 88 points (36 goals).

The 5’8”,  hard-nosed, two-way centre was traded to the Minnesota North Stars on Oct. 28, 1983, aong with Mark Napier and a third round pick in the 1984 NHL Entry Draft, for Bobby Smith.

Acton has been an assistant coach with the Philadelphia Flyers, New York Rangers, Toronto Maple Leafs and the Columbus Blue Jackets.

The late Bill Meronek who played all 19 of his NHL regular season games and one playoff game with the Canadiens, was born on this day in 1917. Meronek was coached in Verdun of the Quebec Senior League by Hall of Famer Aurel Joliat.

Meronek had four points in seven games with the Habs, in the 1939-40 season. He returned to Montreal for the 1942-43 season (9 points in 12 games) was limited to home games due to World War II commitments.

Meronek died in 1999 at the age of 82.

 

Sources:

www.canadiens.com (Acton Photo)

www.hhof.com

www.sihrhockey.org

Sunday, 14 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 14th Edition

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Maurice Richard holds the Stanley Cup for that last time as an active player. (Photo: CHC)

 

On April 14, 1960 Jean Beliveau scored twice as the Montreal Canadiens became the first, and to this day the only team to win five consecutive Stanley Cup Championships, with a 4-0 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs. It was the Canadiens 12th Cup victory.

 

Jacques Plante made 30 saves to record his 10th career playoff shutout, and his third of the playoffs, as Montreal swept through the playoffs in eight straight games.

 

Beliveau and Henri Richard would share the playoff scoring title, with 12 points each.

 

Below is some video footage from that night. The first clip is the final minute of play in the game, where the Leafs attempt to at least break the shutout. Following that is a post-game interviews by Rene Lecavalier with coach Toe Blake and Maurice Richard.

 

The third YouTube comes from the series “Great Hockey Classics,” and features colour highlights from the series, and a look back, 28 years later, featuring commentary from Maurice and Henri Richard, Jean Beliveau, Floyd Curry, Dickie Moore,  Dollard St. Laurent and Phil Goyette.

Saturday, 13 April 2013

As old as it gets: Habs vs. Leafs from 1932 !!

 

Some very rare footage pops up on the internet, and this is certainly one of those moments. Stu Hackel of habsinsideout.com first mentioned it two years ago, but with the Leafs and Habs facing off tonight, it’s worth another look.

The short film, named “A Sport Chat on Hockey: Canada’s National Game” is narrated by Foster Hewitt, and features from a game featuring the Montreal Canadiens and the Toronto Maple Leafs from March 5, 1932.

The segment, running over eight minutes gives a great look at the NHL in the Depression era.

The March 7th Edition of The Montreal Gazette further confirmed the footage, noting in their game report that the game was photographed by sound cameras with the Leafs’ Charlie Conacher and the Canadiens Howie Morenz as the, “’principals’ in the movie drama.”

Lorne Chabot and George Hainsworth tend to the nets for Toronto and Montreal respectively, though you don’t hear Hainsworth’s name mentioned.

The Gazette also noted a fight between Ace Bailey and Aurel Joliat but it was edited out of the film.

Sit back folks and enjoy some real “old school” NHL action featuring some of the greatest players of the 1930’s.

Today in Habs History: April 13th Edition

1944Stanleycup (2)

Toe Blake is hoisted on his teammates shoulders (left) following the Habs Stanley Cup victory in 1944. (Photos: La Presse)

 

April 13, 1944. Toe Blake scored the game winner at 9:12 of OT and added four assists, as Montreal beat the Chicago Black Hawks 5-4 in Game 4 of the Finals. The Habs swept the series to win the Stanley Cup, their first title in 13 years and the fifth in franchise history. The victory ended what was then their longest period without a championship.

 

The Canadiens were down by a 4-1 score, after 40 minutes of play. Fans in the MOntreal Forum yelled “Fake!, Fake"!,” suspecting the home team was sitting on their heels to allow for another game and more playoff revenues. The Canadiens players put those doubts to rest in the final 20 minutes.

 

Elmer Lach scored his second goal of the night, at 10:02 of the third period, to get the Canadiens within two. Then it was time for Maurice Richard, playing in his first Stanley Cup Final, to turn things on with a pair of goals in explosive fashion.

 

The following is the radio broadcast, heard across the country, of Richard’s two goals, courtesy of  the CBC Digital Archives. Unfortunately they did not include Blake’s OT winner.

Friday, 12 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 12th Edition


1950: The Canadiens acquire Frank King from the Cleveland Barons (AHL) for cash.

1955: Dick Irvin became the first coach in NHL history to win 100 career playoff games, when the Montreal Canadiens beat the Detroit Red Wings 6-3 in Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Finals.

1960: Maurice "Rocket" Richard scored his 82nd (and final) NHL playoff goal in Game 3 of the Finals against the Toronto Maple Leafs. The Habs beat the Leafs 5-2, and won again two nights later for the 1960 Stanley Cup Championship.

1987: Montreal completed their sweep of the Boston Bruins in the Adams Division Semi-Finals with a 4-2 win in Game 4. It was the Canadiens' 18th straight playoff series victory over Boston (a playoff record dating back to 1946).

Habs Born on This Day: Bert McAffrey (1893), Roman Hamrlik (1974)

Sources:
www.hhof.com
www.sihrhockey.org

Thursday, 11 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 11th Edition

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1954: Gerry McNeil recorded his 5th (and final) career playoff shutout, and Ken Mosdell scored the winning goal at 5:45 of overtime to lead the Canadiens to a 1-0 win over the Detroit Red Wings, in Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Finals.

 

1959: Claude Provost(pictured)  scored twice in the third period as the Canadiens won 3-1 over the Toronto Maple Leafs, in Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Finals.

 

Also on this day..

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 10th Edition

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Canadiens captain Emile “Butch Bouchard” accepts the Stanley Cup in 1956 (Photo: AP)

 

On April 10, 1956 Jean Beliveau scored a goal and two assists as Montreal beat the Detroit Red Wings 3-1 in Game Five of the Finals, to become the 1956 Stanley Cup Champions. It was eighth cup for the franchise and the start of a record five straight Stanley Cup Championships for the Canadiens.

The following is some video footage of Game Four and Game Five, as well as some of the Semi-Final against the New York Rangers. Immediately following that is some colour footage of Game Five, taken at ice level. A segment from ESPN Classics rounds out the trio of YouTube videos.

 

Tuesday, 9 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 9th Edition

 

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Saku Koivu makes his retun on April 9, 2002 (Photo: RYAN REMIORZ, AP)

The game itself for the Canadiens on April 9, 2002 had some key implications for the Habs. It was the third-last game of the season, and the Canadiens, battling for a final playoff spot, defeated the Ottawa Senators 4-3. The win gave them a very valuable two points that would allow them to hang on to eight place, despite losing their final two games.

 

But on that night in April, it wasn’t about points or playoff positions, it was about courage.

 

The start of Montreal’s 93rd season started with a shocker as captain Saku Koivu announced he had intra-abdominal non-Hodgkins lymphoma, a form of cancer. Until five years prior, this form of cancer was considered uncurable. But with advances in science there was hope. The question was, could Koivu return to the ice?

Monday, 8 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 8th Edition

Jim Henry congratulates Maurice Richard following Game Seven of the 1952 Semi-Finals between the Canadiens and the Bruins. (Photo: Roy St-Jean)

 

If I had to pick out one goal and image  from Maurice Richard’s fabled career, his playoff winner in the seventh game of 1952 Stanley Cup Semi Final easily tops the list.

 

Here’s something I wrote on it for Eyes On The Prize in 2012, to mark the anniversary of the goal.

 

Elsewhere on this day…

Sunday, 7 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 7th Edition

Ed Mazur (Photo: Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame)

 

1953: Rookie Ed Mazur (pictured) scored twice and had an assist in the Canadiens' 4-1 playoff win against the Chicago Black Hawks in the 7th and deciding game of their Stanley Cup Semi-Final series.

Saturday, 6 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 6th Edition

Paul Masnick was an unlikely playoff hero in 1952 (photo: HHOF)

1944: Maurice Richard scored the first of his NHL-record three Stanley Cup Finals' hat tricks, in a 3-1 win over the Chicago Black Hawks, in Game Two of the Finals. The win was the second of four straight by the Canadiens over the Chicago.

 

1952: Paul Masnick, recalled that morning from the Cincinnati Mohawks (AHL), scored at 7:49 of the second overtime period, as Montreal evened the semi-final series at three games apiece with a 3-2 win over the Boston Bruins.

Friday, 5 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 5th Edition

Joe Hall (photo: canadiens.com)

1919: Montreal Canadiens' star Joe Hall succumbs to pneumonia, related to the Spanish Flu outbreak that ended the 1919 Stanley Cup Finals between Montreal and the Seattle Metropolitans four days earlier.

 

1970: Montreal finished the 1969-70 regular season in a fourth place tie with the New York Rangers. But the Rangers had scored two more goals during the regular season, knocking Montreal out of the playoffs for the first time in 22 years.

A look back at the events of that weekend, from a post I did in 2010.

Thursday, 4 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 4th Edition


Pat Burns was born on this day in 1952 (Photo : CP/Shaney Komulainen)

1944: Maurice Richard made his Stanley Cup Finals debut, getting an assist on the game winning goal, in a 5-1 Montreal Canadiens' victory over the Chicago Black Hawks in Game One of the Finals.

Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 3rd Edition

(photo: Hockey Hall of Fame)

April 3, 1977 brought the conclusion of, what is considered by many, the most dominant regular season by a team in NHL history. With a 2-1 road victory over the Washington Capitals, the Canadiens finished with a record of 60-8-12 for a league-record 132 points, finishing 20 points ahead of the 2nd ranked Philadelphia Flyers.

 

The Canadiens became the first NHL team to win 60 games in a season, and set another NHL record with their 27th road victory. Home-ice advantage was an understatement as Montreal lost just a single game at the Forum. The Habs scored 387 goals and allowed just 171, leading the league in both categories.

 

Their offensive might was staggering. With a goal in their final game, Steve Shutt set an NHL record for left wingers with his 60th of the season.

 

Guy Lafleur led the NHL scoring race for the second straight year, with a team-record 136 points. A large percentage of Lafleur’s scoring came from an NHL record 28-game point streak (19 goals, 42 assists), that he carried to season’s end.

 

Larry Robinson brought 85 points from the blue line, en route to his first Norris Trophy, while Guy Lapointe scored 25 goals. The Canadiens’ offense was spread out to say the least, as 14 different players were in double digits in goal scoring.

 

The icing on the cake came a month and a half later, winning the Stanley Cup while losing just two playoff games, and are considered to be the greatest NHL team to ever be assembled.

 

Also on This Day…

Tuesday, 2 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 2nd Edition


Photo: HHOF


 


1950: Bill Durnan played the final game of his NHL career, when Montreal lost 4-1 to the New York Rangers, in Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Semi-Finals.


 


Also on this Day..


 


1959: Dickie Moore and Doug Harvey each had three assists as the Canadiens won 4-2 over the Chicago Black Hawks, in Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Semi-Finals.


 


1975: Ken Dryden recorded his 18th career shutout, and Pete Mahovlich had three assists (including two within a span of :06) in the Canadiens' 6-0 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins.


 


1977: Guy Lafleur and Bob Gainey each had a goal and three assists as the Canadiens extended their NHL-record home undefeated streak to 34 games (28-0-6), with an 11-0 win over the Washington Capitals. Ken Dryden picked up his 36th career shutout. The win was the 59th of the season for the Canadiens, setting a new NHL record.


 


1980: Guy Lafleur scored twice to become the first player in NHL history to get six straight 50 goal seasons, as the Canadiens beat the Detroit Red Wings 7-2. Lafleur broke the mark of 5 straight 50-goal seasons set by Phil Esposito.


 


1988: The Canadiens scored a club record three goals in 37 seconds in the first period, on their way to a 9-4 win against the Buffalo Sabres. Stephane Richer scored his third career hat trick, and had an assist, and Larry Robinson added four assists.


 


Habs Born on This Day: Cec Hoekstra (1935)


 


Sources:


www.hhof.com


www.sihrhockey.org

Monday, 1 April 2013

Today in Habs History: April 1st Edition

(Photo: Getty Images)

Kenneth Kilander’s name is not on the Stanley Cup, but in 1961 he certainly got his hands on it. It only seems fitting that Killander’s tale of thievery comes on April 1.

 

I wrote about the devoted Habs fan’s story in 2010. Here’s the link to it.

 

Also on this day..