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The King of EBUGs, Norm Beaudin

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The Maple Leafs were beaten by an EBUG (Emergency Back-Up Goalie). David Ayres, part-time practice goalie of the Leafs and Zamboni driver of the AHL Marlies, stopped 6 of 8 shots over half a game. He earned his first (and surely only) NHL victory and even recorded a shot on net with a long clearing pass that hit the net. As inspiring and impressive as Ayres story is, he's got nothing on longtime pro, Norm Beaudin.  That's right. Beaudin surely has to be the only ever Emergency Goalie to score a goal in the same game. The Hull-Ottawa Canadiens were the Eastern Professional League affiliate of the Montreal Canadiens and were loaded with future NHLers. Beaudin, in his rookie pro season after leading the junior Regina Pats with 57 goals the previous season, was joined by the likes of Red Berenson, Terry Harper, Jacques Laperriere, Claude Larose, Jimmy Roberts, Cesare Maniago and Ernie Wakely.  It was Wakely's injury that prompted Coach Scotty Bowman to ask his bench if anyone…

Auston Matthews chasing Rick Vaive

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Auston Matthews is on track to set a new mark for goals scored in a season for the Toronto Maple Leafs. As he entered the All-Star break, he had notched 34 goals while playing in every one of Toronto's 49 games, on pace to total 57 goals. For a franchise that has been around for over a century, the Leafs actually have one of the lower totals for their best goal scoring season as Rick Vaive's 54 in 1981/82 stands as the record. I thought it would be interesting to look back to see where the Leafs top goal-scoring years stood after the same 49 games that Matthews has played this year.
1960/61 Frank Mahovlich After 49 games on January 28, 1961, The Big "M" had scored 40 goals and 19 assists while playing in every game. With 21 games remaining, he seemed to be a lock to break the record of 50 goals in a season set by Maurice Richard. Alas, the pressure got to Mahovlich and he only scored 8 more in his last 21 games to finish with 48 in 70 games. He would top this total b…

1961/62 Montreal Forum Program

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One of my more recent acquisitions is this beautiful Montreal Canadiens program. As a diehard Maple Leaf fan and collector, I admit I have very few Canadiens items in my collection, but this cover was just too nice to pass up. The program is from opening night of the 1961/62 season at the Forum. It pictures the Habs and the Maple Leafs on the cover in a great painting by renowned hockey artist, Tex Coulter. Tex was prolific in creating artwork for programs, magazines and calendars. The detail of the cover is below.
Although the players shown are not named in the program, it is easy enough to name them all through their numbers and/or faces. The Canadien #16 is of course Henri Richard. The sprawling Leaf at the top is Tim Horton, the Leaf with the "A" on the jersey is Allan Stanley and the Leaf #9 is Dick Duff. The goaltender #1 is most likely Johnny Bower. Assuming the painting is from a photo taken during the previous season (1960/61) then it is possible the goalie is Cesa…

1938/39 Maple Leafs Program

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Usually I will share my latest vintage program over at Maple Leafs Programme Project but this one is just too good. From the 1938/39 season, this program is from a game between the Leafs and the visiting New York Rangers. The Rangers ended up winning the match by a score of 3-2 as Dave Kerr out-duelled Leafs Turk Broda. The player pictured on the cover is not stated, but he bears a resemblance to Bob Davidson. Pretty cool listing by W.A. Hewitt of hockey's stars from 1900-1939.
Above is a full page advertisement featuring a great interior photo of Maple Leaf Gardens. I cropped and enlarged it below.
Another ad shows game action between the Rangers and Leafs. A few of the players are identifiable. The middle Leaf is Syl Apps, and #11 has to be Busher Jackson. The Ranger goalie is Dave Kerr who played every game for the Rangers in the previous two seasons.
Next is an advertisement from Quaker Oats for some terrific Leafs memorabilia.
Below is an ad for Golden Crest Dairy depicting …

Connor McDavid's Hot Start

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Connor McDavid is living in the 1980's. Well, at least his scoring exploits are living in the 1980's. After scoring a ridiculous 17 points in the Oilers first seven games of the season, he is producing at levels not seen in decades. He is only the third player in 30 years to collect at least 17 points in his first 7 games of the season. The other two, Wayne and Mario. Those two made a habit of storming out of the gates, Gretzky did this on 8 different occasions, while Lemieux did it 4 times. Perhaps most amazing is the fact Lemieux started the 2002/03 campaign with 16 points in his first 7 games...at age 37.

Of course, the old tale of  league-wide scoring rates rears it's head while comparing different eras. Below are the hottest starts in modern NHL history with each season's league goal scoring rate included.

PLAYER YEAR  G-A-Pts       NHL  G/GP avg
McDavid 19/20     5-12-17              6.23

Lemieux  86/87    10-9-19                7.34
Lemieux  88/89    13-13-26   …

1939 Toronto Maple Leafs Program

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Here is the latest addition to my Maple Leaf Programme Project, the quest to collect a game program from every season in the history of Maple Leaf Gardens. I believe this is the 42nd of 50 seasons between 1930/31 and 1979/80 that I have a program from Maple Leaf Gardens. A few of them are from wrestling or ice-capades events at the Gardens and one is a Junior game. These all count for my purposes.  This latest acquisition is from April 1939, an Allan Cup Finals game between the Montreal Royals and the Toronto Goodyears. The Royals would eventually win the Allan Cup by three games to two. The Goodyears were led by future NHLers Don Metz, Peanuts O'Flaherty, Hank Goldup and 22 year-old future Leafs Coach/GM, George "Punch" Imlach. The Royals boasted two future big-leaguers in Buddy O'Connor and Gerry Heffernan. The cover of the program has a wonderful painting of a Leaf skater, not identified inside the program.  Looking through the photo database of the Leafs of that…

Guy Carbonneau, Unexpected Hall-of Famer

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After years of absolute zero buzz around his Hall of Fame candidacy, Guy Carbonneau was surprisingly voted in as an Honoured Member. Personally, I don't agree with the selection of "Carbo" to the Hall, in my mind, there are probably forty other players I'd put in ahead of him. His supporters point to the fact that Carbonneau won three Selke Awards, three Cups and was the top defensive forward of his era. I'm not sure that's enough for enshrinement. To be blunt, if Guy Carbonneau is a Hall of Famer, then Buffalo Sabre Craig Ramsay is a Hall of Famer. Let's look at the numbers.
The stats do indeed back up the fact that Carbonneau was the top defensive forward of his time. Looking at HockeyReference.com, Carbonneau was the player with the most Defensive Point Shares over his time in the NHL. From 1982/83 through 1999/00 he was credited with 23.4 DPS, ahead of five legit Hall of Fame members; Gilmour, Gretzky, Francis, Andreychuk and Yzerman. Carbo was almo…