Gordon Juckes, the secretary-manager of the Canadian Amateur Hockey Association has completed his investigation into the game-three debacle between the Edmonton Oil Kings and Niagara Falls Flyers. He has decided that the Memorial Cup final series will continue in Edmonton tonight with game four.
In rendering his decision, Juckes suspended three players. Ricky Ley of Niagara Falls and Ron Anderson of Edmonton were sat down for one game each for deliberately attempting to injure a player. The two engaged in a vicious stick-swinging duel just before the major brawl that caused the game to be called off.
The Flyers’ Derek Sanderson has been suspended indefinitely for deliberately injuring another player. Sanderson pummelled Edmonton defenceman Bob Falkenberg into unconsciousness, touching of the major brawl that ended the game.
The Flyers have appealed to the CAHA to specifically define the length of Sanderson’s suspension.
Juckes: Sanderson started the brawl
Juckes’ investigation revealed that the Sanderson attack on Falkenberg precipitated the major brawl. With all players on the ice fighting and officials unable to control the situation, referee Jim McCauley ordered police onto the ice to restore order. The Flyers players left their bench upon the arrival of the police and were joined by the Oil Kings. At that point fans became involved.
Sanderson, who was banished immediately, was jumped by three men on his way to the Flyers dressing room and shoved into a nearby room. He was assaulted repeatedly and suffered several head cuts and severe bruising to other parts of his body. There have been no arrests.
Juckes said that the rest of the best-of-seven series will be played as scheduled in Edmonton. He has requested that the City of Edmonton provide an increased police presence. There will be at least 50 officers on hand to protect the players on both sides.
Both clubs threatened to quit
Both clubs had threatened to pull out of the series and former CAHA president Art Potter said he was going to recommend suspension of the series.
The Oil Kings were apparently satisfied that Sanderson was suspended indefinitely and agreed to continue. The Flyers initially wanted a change of venue, citing Edmonton’s inability to guarantee the safety of the visiting players. Owner-manager Hap Emms said that he would accept the CAHA and Edmonton city police word that they would ensure that another incident such as took place against Sanderson would not be repeated.
Series could be moved if violence continues
Juckes said that if another fan-involved incident took place, he reserved the right to move the series to another city or to suspend and declare the series to be over.
The investigation included talks with officials of both clubs, referee McCauley, city and police officials and management of the Edmonton Gardens. A game film was also studied.
The series resumes tonight with the Flyers leading two games to one. Edmonton will likely be without Falkenberg and forward Craig Cameron, who suffered a shoulder injury.
Niagara Falls forward Bill Goldsworthy was listed as a doubtful starter after being speared by Falkenberg. However, late word out of Edmonton is that Goldsworthy may try to give it a go tonight.
Rangers rename farm club
The St. Paul Rangers are no more. The New York Rangers farm team in the Central Professional Hockey League will now be known as the Minnesota Rangers. The change in name comes about after the Minneapolis Bruins were moved by the parent Boston organization to Oklahoma City.
The Rangers said that a group of Minneapolis and St. Paul businessmen will run the team, representing the entire state of Minnesota.
Jake Milford has been appointed as the general manager, president and treasurer of the team, and will have complete control of the operation.