Thursday, August 8, 2019

1939 Toronto Maple Leafs Program

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 era, I believe the player pictured is Bob Davidson (photograph below).
Davidson would play twelve NHL seasons, all for Toronto. He posted his best numbers in 1943/44 when he tallied 47 points in 47 games. Davidson retired after the 1945/46 season.
 This program is loaded with great advertisements of the day including the great interior shot of The Gardens in a Department of Highways Ontario ad. The fellow below seems simply enthralled with his piece of Wrigley's Doublemint gum.
The ad for the Globe and Mail newspaper shows a terrific action shot of the Maple Leafs baseball club of the Triple A, International League. You could have got yourself a brand new Pontiac Arrow Coupe for a mere $880. That equals approximately $15,000 today, which is still a steal. 
The NHL scoring stats to that point showed Leafs Gord Drillon having an outstanding playoffs. Unfortunately the Leafs ended up losing to Boston by four games to one. Drillon produced only two assists in the five games. Boston's Bill Cowley ended up tops in playoff scoring with 14 points.
Above, Maple Leafs players enjoy their pre-game cereal with Bee Hive Corn Syrup. Apparently it aids digestion AND builds strength! Below, an ad for Dunne Skate Company of Toronto. I would love to strap on a pair of these bad boys and go for a whirl. 
 As per usual for this time, the back cover is adorned with a full colour ad for cigarettes, specifically Sweet Caporal.

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