The Montreal Canadiens dropped their third game in a row, losing a 5-3 decision at home to the Toronto Maple Leafs in one of two National Hockey League games last evening. In the other contest, Murray Oliver’s hat trick led the Boston Bruins to a 5-2 over the New York Rangers.
Pulford pots two
In Montreal, Bob Pulford paced the Toronto attack with two goals. Rookie Pete Stemkowski was also a standout for the Leafs as he added his first NHL goal and set up two others. Jim Pappin and Allan Stanley were the other Toronto goal-getters. Pulford’s first goal was a short-handed effort, his 13th of the season and fifth while the team was killing a penalty.
The Leafs snapped a 3-3 with two goals only 11 seconds apart at 9:20 and 9:31 of the third period. After Pulford had notched his second of the night, Stemkowski followed that up right from the subsequent faceoff with his first big-league marker.
Claude Provost bagged a pair for the Canadiens, with John Ferguson adding a single.
The Canadiens actually outshot Toronto by a 43-27 margin, including 17 drives at Leaf netminder Johnny Bower in the first period. Bower’s fine work kept Toronto in the game until his mates found their legs and eventually took over in the final frame.
Montreal coach Toe Blake was frustrated after the game and hinted at lineup changes. One of those changes may be something Blake has resisted – a switch to the two-goaltender system.
“We have to do something and quick. We’ll decide later today but it looks like we’ll bring Gump Worsley back from Quebec to share the goaltending with Charlie Hodge the rest of the season. Maybe the goaltending in this league is too much for one man.”
Hodge has surrendered 16 goals in the three losses. But Blake wasn’t heaping all the blame on him.
“I can fault Charlie on about four of those 16 goals. But the guys in front of him – especially the forwards – have been standing around, not checking. The pressure must be getting Hodge and he can use a rest.”
Shortly thereafter the Canadiens announced that Worsley was being recalled from Quebec and will replace Hodge for at least one game.
Oliver nets three
At Boston, Murray Oliver became the first Bruin player this season to score three times in a game in Boston’s win over the Rangers. He added an assist for a four-point evening. Oliver’s last hat trick was in December, 1961.
Rookies Billy Knibbs and Wayne Rivers also scored for the Bruins. Bob Nevin best of the Rangers on the night, scored both New York goals. Boston outshot New York 48-23, with Ranger goalie Jacques Plante having a strong game in a losing cause. Only 7,612 were on hand at the Boston Garden, one of the smallest NHL crowds this season.
NHL announces mid-term All Stars
The National Hockey League announced its official mid-season All Star team yesterday. While there were no huge surprises, it was notable that neither Toronto nor Boston managed to place a man on either the first or second teams.
Chicago left winger Bobby Hull was, quite correctly, the only unanimous choice with 90 out of a possible 90 points. Rounding out the forward line on the first team are centre Norm Ullman of Detroit and Montreal’s Claude Provost on the right side. It’s a bit ironic that Provost, normally assigned to check Hull, lines up on first team with the Golden Jet.
On defence, Jacques Laperriere of Montreal garnered 81 out of 90 points to lead vote-getters on the blue line. He is joined by Pierre Pilote of Chicago, who is tied for fourth in NHL scoring.
Charlie Hodge of Canadiens is the goaltender, despite having fallen on hard times recently.
The second team is manned by Stan Mikita (C) of Chicago, New York’s Camille Henry (LW), Rod Gilbert (RW) and Harry Howell (D), and Bill Gadsby (D) and Roger Crozier (G) of Detroit.
Clancy not happy
Toronto’s assistant manager-coach King Clancy was not happy with the All Star selectors and didn’t mince words:
“It’s a laugh, a very unfunny joke. It’s easy to see most of the guys voting didn’t see all the games and went only for point-getters, not two-way hockey players.
“How could they keep Bob Pulford, Terry Sawchuk, Ron Ellis, Carl Brewer and Bob Baun off those first two teams? I must have been looking at different games.”
Clancy gave his assessment of those players who were named: “I go along with Ullman as the first team centre and Claude Provost is pretty good at right wing. And there is no argument about Bobby Hull at left wing. Jacques Laperriere played well in the first half, but not Pierre Pilote. He was Chicago’s poorest defenceman in our first seven games with Hawks. And I can’t fault Charlie Hodge in goal. He robbed us blind until last night.
“But Sawchuk should have made that second team and I don’t go for Bill Gadsby or Harry Howell on defence. Brewer and Baun were better. Pulford should have beaten Stan Mikita out for the second team on what Mikita showed against us. And Camille Henry and Rod Gilbert on the wings! What a laugh.
“Gord Howe or Ellis should have had the right wing spot and Dean Prentice the left. And how could a guy who has played as well as Pulford end up away back in fourth place?”
Retired police detective, involved in hockey at all levels for over 50 years. Member of Society for International Hockey Research and presently a video analyst for the leader in advanced hockey analytics (we work exclusively for 2 NHL clubs, and provide advice on an ad hoc basis to many other clients). Currently the Assistant General Manager for the Pelham Pirates of the Greater Ontario Junior Hockey League. Previously owned the Faceoff computer hockey simulation and also provided all player ratings for the EA Sports series of NHL computer games from the late 90’s into the mid 2000’s.