Three years before the ’72 series, the Russians may not have felt they could beat us, as Mr. Beliveau said. After 1972, they knew they could beat us.
Below, the Rocket’s contract for the 1956-57 season, drawn up on a 1954 Northern Electric calendar page, for the sum of $12,000, plus a $2,000 signing bonus.
$12,000 is basically the equivalent of $108,000 in 2017 dollars.
Thanks to Bernie Beland in Sudbury for sending me a photo of this great piece.
Interestingly enough, Rocket’s brother Henri’s rookie contract was drawn up on the very same type of calendar page, but from the year before, 1953, even though Henri’s rookie year was 1955-56.
GM Frank Selke must have held on to his old, out-of-date Northern Electric calendar pages because he was a cheap bastard.
From my collection, three examples of Habs team jacket crests from days gone by, and all made with that cool chenille fabric. Although chenille is notorious for the colour running if washed or in heavy rain.
From the 1950s:
The early 1960s:
And unsure exactly about the era, but it’s a 1940s design with the top right coming up so high:
The chenille yarn is manufactured by placing short lengths of yarn, called the “pile”, between two “core yarns” and then twisting the yarn together. The edges of these piles then stand at right angles to the yarn’s core, giving chenille both its softness and its characteristic look. Chenille will look different in one direction compared to another, as the fibers catch the light differently. Chenille can appear iridescent without actually using iridescent fibers. The yarn is commonly manufactured from cotton, but can also be made using acrylic, rayon and olefin.
A couple of years ago I wrote about a 1955 recording (on 78 RPM) by Bob Hill and his Canadian Country Boys called ‘Saga of Rocket Richard’, which was about the infamous Richard Riot on St. Patrick’s Day of that year.
My story is here if you want – Bob Hill’s Rocket Riot Tune
It’s hard to find, this old disc, but I got one just the other day! First an old pedal car, and then the record, all within a week. I’m on a roll.
Here’s my new/old record!
The Ford Motor Company began in 1903, but before that, in 1896, Henry Ford was bombing around in his newly-built Quadricycle, named for the bicycle-like tires.
Which brings me to my new ride, which is loosely based on Henry’s.
Probably built in 1953 to commemorate the Ford Company’s 50 years, my new/old pedal car was used as a Ford dealership promotion, later to be won in a raffle by an elderly lady in Indiana, and finally ending up with a lovely couple in their ’80s in Revelstoke who had owned an antique store for years.
It’s very rare, has been kept under a blanket in the antique store basement, and is the only one the previous owner had ever seen, although he’s had dozens of other types over the years, including 28 different ones at one time.
But not like this one, and he held onto it after slowly selling the others.
I’ve searched the internet and found a couple of others, but mine is in much better shape than those. One fellow online thought only three had ever been made, but I question that.
Anyway, here’s my new ride. It has a few scratches and dents and a couple of other minor issues, but so do I, although mine are much more.
If I keep losing weight, maybe I can take it for a spin.
Finally, another example of a real Quadricycle.
It takes about five hours to travel 120 kms from my home in Powell River to Vancouver. Each ferry takes a bit under an hour, add the waiting at the ferry terminals, plus the small curvy road all the way down, and it becomes a major trek.
But lots of folk don’t quite understand where Powell River is. Some think it’s on Vancouver Island but it’s not, and many don’t quite understand why it’s a bit isolated. So I took a coaster to explain.
Please note – I was a little off on my ‘end of road’ marker, so add another half inch or so. This is where the road, highway 101, ends (or begins) on the west coast. You can’t go any further north.
About this road: If you were to hop in your car at the little fishing village of Lund, about 30 minutes north of Powell River, and you kept going south, you’d end up in Chile.
And one last little piece of trivia. I used to work at the ferry at Saltery Bay. If all this isn’t enough, I’ve included a bonus picture of me on one of my better days.
That’s it for the Habs after falling to the Rangers 3-1 in game six, and I’d say I’ll now start getting excited about the Blue Jays’ season, except they’re 4 and 12 and about to lose another as I write.
I wish the Expos would come back.
Still no Stanley Cup since 1993. Will it happen again soon? Will it happen in my lifetime or yours?
I don’t have favourite players on my team. That time is long gone. When I was a kid, the Rocket was my hero. And Beliveau and Harvey and I guess, every player on the team. As a guy in my twenties, I was happy about Lafleur and Dryden and Robinson.
But it’s only about the crest now. I liked Subban for example, but it didn’t bother me one bit when he was traded because I thought Shea Weber was an upgrade in many ways. I still do.
It’s about the team only. Players can come and go and I won’t bat an eyelash.
A few days ago I saw a film clip of Andrei Markov coming out of a NY hotel (or maybe Madison Square Garden) and a kid, the only person in site, approached him for an autograph. Markov shook his head and casually walked across the street.
Players can say no all they want to adults, I understand and accept that. But there’s no excuse to say no to a kid.
No excuse. It would’ve taken all of about four seconds to sign the kid’s piece of paper.
And so, I finish off a season of game reports complaining about Andrei Markov.
Thanks to everyone who read my posts this season. I hope you liked some of them. And I also truly appreciate anyone who took the time to sometimes comment.
We thought the team had a decent chance this year to make a serious dent.
But without naming names, they let us down.
The Canadiens fall 3-2 to the Rangers in overtime, and now it’s gonna take them seven games to win the series instead of six.
I’m okay with that, because I have faith. But they’re testing my faith. And my patience. Bastards.
For much of the game, the Rangers were the better team, and that’s unacceptable, especially at the Bell Centre where noisy fans provided the atmosphere, but fans can’t put the puck in the net. That’s where the team is supposed to chip in.
It was a sickening sight to see the puck get past Carey Price in overtime, because as dominate as the Rangers were in OT, it was always possible that a lucky break could see the Canadiens end up winning the thing.
It never happened, and now the series resumes once again on Saturday in New York. And it’ll have to be all hands on deck for that one, because no-shows aren’t welcome. Never have been, never will. Especially no-shows that wear the CH.
I still feel that Montreal is the better team. It’s just how I feel. They weren’t tonight, and they weren’t on Tuesday. Or game 1 for that matter. So maybe they’re not.
This one hurts.
From my notes:
In the first minute of the game, Carey Price made a huge save on Mats Zuccarello, and I thought maybe Pricer was gonna be a hero on this night.
Andrew Shaw and the much bigger Brendan Smith dropped the gloves, Shaw got in several fine rights, and he looked good as he swung away. It was just the beginning of a rough and tumble, hard hitting, testy kind of a night.
Still in the first, Artturi Lehkonen fooled with Marc Staal and ended up swooping around the net and sending the puck past Henny Lunny to give the boys a 1-0 lead.
Still in the period, Jesper Fast scored a shorthanded marker after Alex Galchenyuk coughed up the puck, and the game was tied.
Galchenyuk’s been mediocre at best in this series. Maybe he doesn’t want to be a Hab anymore.
Just 25 seconds later, on the same power play, Brendan Gallagher fooled Henny from 15 feet out and the good guys took the lead again.
In the second period, Zuccarello highsticked Paul Byron, catching him in the eye area. Somebody needs to tune the Norwegian in once and for all.
With just 1:32 left in the 2nd, the Rangers tied it up, and it was after this that the strength of my ticker was firmly tested.
Sixteen seconds in, Gally took a slashing penalty when his little love tap knocked the stick out of the hands of a weak-wristed Blueshirt. A cheap call indeed, but NY failed to score.
Gally’s only 5’9″, 184 pounds, but he’s the toughest son of a gun on the ice.
Also in the third, Phillip Danault hit the post while the team was shorthanded, and Max couldn’t solve Henny on a clear-cut breakaway.
Max is in a slump at the wrong time of year. But you already know that.
In overtime it was all Rangers.
One Lousy Random Note:
Game 6 on Saturday in New York is an 8pm ET start. Or 5pm where I live.