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Showing posts from July, 2013

Did Cyclone Taylor Top Bill Mosienko 50 Years Earlier?

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Bill Mosienko of course is the author of the fastest recorded three goals in NHL history. In 1952, he notched a hat-trick in an amazing 21 seconds that I wrote about a few years ago . I recently came across a tale that may show that the legendary Fred 'Cyclone' Taylor may have scored three goals even quicker, a half century before Mosienko.

In 1953, Hall of Fame Builder and 'The Father of Hockey' James T. Sutherland described the events in 'The Hockey Book'. My comments and thoughts are included in brackets.

    Back in 1904, the Kingston Frontenacs and the Listowel Juniors qualified to play for the O.H.A. junior championship. The title was to be decided in a sudden-death game at the old Mutual Street Rink in Toronto. 
    Some 700 fans came from Listowel by special train, and the rink was packed to the rafters. The referee was Pink Lillie. (Not sure if that was his nickname, if so it's quite a doozy) A divinity student from the University of Toronto and mys…

The Gretzky's at the Ballpark

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I attended the Vancouver Canadians baseball game yesterday. This is one of the lower levels of minor league baseball, the short-season (70 game) Northwest League. I enjoy going to the ballpark a few times a year and grew up an avid Toronto Blue Jays fan, but the main reason for going to this game was to check out Gretzky. Gretzky the kid.
20 year-old Trevor Gretzky was drafted by the Chicago Cubs in the 7th round of the 2011 Major League Baseball draft after starring at Oaks Christian High School in Southern California. His Boise Hawks wer in town to take on the Blue Jays Single 'A' Canadians. At 6'4" he cuts a far larger figure than his old man ever did, but his weight of 190 lbs leaves him a bit on the lanky side. 
The organization projects him as a Left Fielder so he will have to develop one or the other of power or speed. As it is now, he's learning how to utilize both of these assets. As of today, in 49 games played including last season, he has a respectabl…

Al Arbour & The Perils of Poor Eyesight

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Al Arbour was on of the very few professional hockey players to wear glasses during the course of games. He was a terrific defender and great shot-blocker. He played over 1,300 pro games, 626 in the NHL and helped win three Stanley Cups. After winning the Eddie Shore plaque as AHL's best Defenceman in 1965, League president Jack Riley said, "Al Arbour is the best defenceman outside the NHL, and he should be in it."

He was Rod Langway before Rod Langway. In 1954/55 he made the second all-star team in the QHL with the Quebec Aces although he played in only 20 of the team's 60 games played that year. One can imagine he had a few trials and tribulations due to his one-ice eyewear. In a February 1966 issue of Hockey Illustrated a few of them are chronicled:

While with Windsor Junior A Ontario Hockey Association during a game at Stratford, Al Arbour was playing centre. A stick broke and the black-taped blade skittered down the ice toward the Stratford goal, with Arbour in…