Wednesday, November 7, 2012

This Day in 1980's Leaf History; Nov. 7, 1982

Sick of waiting for the asses of the NHL and PA to solve their seemingly minscule differences, I'm going to delve into a topic near and dear to my heart...the Toronto Maple Leafs of the 1980's. Why this time period? The Leafs of the 80's were awful. They never had more than 71 points in a season and won only two playoff series. But, this was my childhood and for some reason I still loved them. In lieu of looking at current NHL hockey, let's look at this day in 1980's Leaf history; a decade of crap.
Thirty years ago today, Sunday November 7, 1982. The Maple Leafs lost in Chicago to the Blackhawks by a score of 7-3. The Hawks peppered Leaf goalie Michel "Bunny" Laroucque with 22 shots in the first period and held a 4-0 lead in the twelfth minute of the game. John Anderson would make it 4-1 with just over four minutes left in the first and rookie Peter Ihnacak brought them withen two with four seconds remaining.
The Leaf comeback stalled however in the middle frame as they managed only five shots on Murray Bannerman. Tom Lysiak scored Chicago's fifth of the game and Peter Marsh and Bob McGill fought late in the period, both also collecting Game Misconducts. Leaf Miroslav Frycer scored early in the third to gain faint hope before Lysiak and Doug Wilson finished off the scoring. Lysiak would finish with two goals and two helpers, Wilson a goal and two assists.
The loss left Toronto with a 2-7-5 record, their 9 points tied with Detroit for basement of the Norris Division. Larocque, on the downward end of a fine career mainly as a back-up goaltender was traded in the New Year to Philadelphia for Rick St.Croix. In parts of three seasons with Toronto Bunny proved he was a far better back-up than a starter, or at least far better behind Montreal's defence than Toronto's. He left Toronto with a record of 16-35-13 and 4.90 GAA.

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