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Showing posts from October, 2015

My Mom's Friend, Fleming MacKell

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On October 19, two-time Stanley Cup winner Fleming MacKell passed away at the age of 86. MacKell played thirteen seasons in the NHL and was named a First Team All-Star after the 1952/53 season in which he scored 27 goals. With 369 points in 665 games and another 63 in 80 playoff games, MacKell was an under-rated NHL star of the 1950's.  The photo above was graciously given by MacKell to my Mother only a few years ago. My recently retired Mom was then a teller at the bank that he did his business with in Ajax, Ont. She must have struck a chord with Mr. MacKell as he would make a point of visiting only her counter every time he came in. She knew him as a friendly old gentleman, and not as an old hockey player. Once she discovered he was an ex-NHLer she of course told him about her hockey obsessed son.  When she shared with me that she had an old NHL veteran as a bank client and asked me if I had ever heard of Fleming MacKell, I predictably replied yes. I shared with her how he and …

Slow Start for Crosby

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Sidney Crosby has finally scored! In his sixth game of the 2015/16 season Crosby finally made his way onto the scoresheet with a goal and two assists. The player with the fifth highest career points per game in NHL history had gone the first five games of this season without a point. Maybe it was his off-season job as a Tim Horton's drive-thru cashier that dulled his skills, but this year has been the slowest start in Sid's career. His previous worst start to a season was 2010/11 when he gathered only 3 points in his first 5 games played. Now, it may not be entirely fair to compare Crosby to the top two players in career points per game; Gretzky and Lemieux...but it sure is fun.
As one may expect, neither The Great One or Le Magnifique ever started an NHL season pointless in five games. Gretzky's worst five game start was 1996/97 when he collected a pedestrian four points in his first five games. In fact, Wayne Gretzky never ONCE went five games in a row without getting a…

1942/43 Toronto Army Daggers

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During the Second War, the Senior Ontario Hockey Association included several full teams of players enlisted in the Canadian Military and stationed in and around the Toronto area. One of the squads was the Toronto Army Daggers who's photos I found on the Toronto City Archives website. The Daggers finished third in 1942/43 with a record of 4-7-1 but still qualified for the OHA Senior playoffs. They played the Niagara Falls Cataracts winning in two straight games by scores of 4-1 and 9-2.

The Daggers were then dumped in the Semi-finals by the RCAF Flyers by scores of 7-6 and 11-1. Cliff Simpson (above) would lead the Daggers in playoff scoring with 6 goals and 9 points in the 4 games. Simpson, 19 years old at the time would go on to play bits of two seasons with the Detroit Red Wings and in 1947/48 scored 110 points in 68 games for the AHL's Indianapolis Capitals.
Buck Davies (below) had 4 points in 10 games for the Daggers this season and went on to play one NHL playoff game f…

Maple Leafs Hockey Talks Record Albums

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The latest addition to my Den collection is one of my new favourites. The Maple Leaf Hockey Talks set of 10 records released in 1967. There are ten albums in all that were issued in Canada at Esso gas stations with a fill-up of your gas tank. Each is approximately twelve minutes long and dedicated to an individual Maple Leaf. Interviews with the player are done discussing their background and game instruction. They feature the voices of Foster Hewitt, Ward Cornell and Jack Dennett. 

 The thin vinyl (read flimsy) records each have their own sleeve and the ten sleeves come in a cardboard "carrying case" pictured above.
I found a clip online of the George Armstrong record. Seeing as I don't own a record turntable, this is for now the only way that I'll hear what's on these beauties.