51-52MonCan.jpg
1951–52 Montreal Canadiens · NHL
Division 2nd NHL
1951–52 record 34–26–10
Goals for 195
Goals against 164
General Manager Frank J. Selke
Coach Dick Irvin
Captain Emile Bouchard
Arena Montreal Forum
Team Leaders
Goals Bernie Geoffrion (30)
Assists Elmer Lach (50)
Points Elmer Lach (65)
Penalties in minutes Doug Harvey (82)
Wins Gerry McNeil (34)
Goals against average Gerry McNeil (2.34)
← Seasons →
1950–51 1952–53

The 1951–52 Montreal Canadiens season was the club's 43rd season of play. The Canadiens finished 2nd in the league and defeated the Boston Bruins in the Semi-finals. The Detroit Red Wings swept the Canadiens in the 1952 Stanley Cup Finals 4 games to 0.

Off-season[edit | edit source]

Regular Season[edit | edit source]

On October 29, 1951, Princess (later Queen) Elizabeth and Prince Phillip were in attendance at the Montreal Forum. Floyd Curry had a hat trick and Maurice Richard scored two goals as Montreal beat the New York Rangers 6-1.

Elmer Lach night was held March 8 at Montreal Forum as the Canadiens tied Chicago 4-4. 14,452 fans were on hand to see Lach presented with a car, rowboat, TV set, deepfreeze chest, bedroom and dining room suites, a refrigerator and many other articles.

Final Standings[edit | edit source]

National Hockey League GP W L T Pts GF GA
Detroit Red Wings 70 44 14 12 100 215 133
Montreal Canadiens 70 34 26 10 78 195 164
Toronto Maple Leafs 70 29 25 16 74 168 157
Boston Bruins 70 25 29 16 66 162 176
New York Rangers 70 23 34 13 59 192 219
Chicago Black Hawks 70 17 44 9 43 158 241

Note: GP = Games played, W = Wins, L = Losses, T = Ties, Pts = Points, GF = Goals for, GA = Goals against
Teams that qualified for the playoffs are highlighted in bold.


Game Log[edit | edit source]

Regular Season Results
No. R Date Score Opponent Record
1 W October 11, 1951 4–2 Chicago Black Hawks (1951–52) 1–0–0
2 L October 13, 1951 1–2 Boston Bruins (1951–52) 1–1–0
3 W October 14, 1951 4–3 @ Boston Bruins (1951–52) 2–1–0
4 W October 18, 1951 3–2 New York Rangers (1951–52) 3–1–0
5 L October 20, 1951 0–3 @ Detroit Red Wings (1951–52) 3–2–0
6 L October 22, 1951 1–3 Detroit Red Wings (1951–52) 3–3–0
7 T October 25, 1951 2–2 @ Chicago Black Hawks (1951–52) 3–3–1
8 L October 28, 1951 1–2 @ New York Rangers (1951–52) 3–4–1
9 W October 29, 1951 6–1 New York Rangers (1951–52) 4–4–1
10 L October 31, 1951 0–1 @ Toronto Maple Leafs (1951–52) 4–5–1
11 L November 1, 1951 2–4 Toronto Maple Leafs (1951–52) 4–6–1
12 L November 3, 1951 2–3 Detroit Red Wings (1951–52) 4–7–1
13 W November 8, 1951 4–2 Boston Bruins (1951–52) 5–7–1
14 W November 10, 1951 4–2 Chicago Black Hawks (1951–52) 6–7–1
15 T November 11, 1951 3–3 @ Detroit Red Wings (1951–52) 6–7–2
16 W November 17, 1951 3–2 New York Rangers (1951–52) 7–7–2
17 T November 18, 1951 3–3 @ Boston Bruins (1951–52) 7–7–3
18 L November 22, 1951 1–5 @ Chicago Black Hawks (1951–52) 7–8–3
19 L November 24, 1951 2–4 @ Toronto Maple Leafs (1951–52) 7–9–3
20 L November 25, 1951 1–2 @ New York Rangers (1951–52) 7–10–3
21 W November 29, 1951 5–1 Toronto Maple Leafs (1951–52) 8–10–3
22 W December 1, 1951 4–2 Chicago Black Hawks (1951–52) 9–10–3
23 L December 2, 1951 1–4 @ Boston Bruins (1951–52) 9–11–3
24 L December 8, 1951 0–3 Detroit Red Wings (1951–52) 9–12–3
25 L December 9, 1951 2–3 @ Detroit Red Wings (1951–52) 9–13–3
26 T December 13, 1951 1–1 @ Chicago Black Hawks (1951–52) 9–13–4
27 W December 15, 1951 3–1 Boston Bruins (1951–52) 10–13–4
28 W December 16, 1951 4–2 @ Boston Bruins (1951–52) 11–13–4
29 L December 19, 1951 2–4 @ New York Rangers (1951–52) 11–14–4
30 W December 20, 1951 4–1 Toronto Maple Leafs (1951–52) 12–14–4
31 W December 22, 1951 5–1 Chicago Black Hawks (1951–52) 13–14–4
32 L December 23, 1951 0–4 @ Detroit Red Wings (1951–52) 13–15–4
33 W December 26, 1951 3–2 @ Toronto Maple Leafs (1951–52) 14–15–4
34 W December 29, 1951 7–2 New York Rangers (1951–52) 15–15–4
35 W December 31, 1951 5–3 @ Detroit Red Wings (1951–52) 16–15–4
36 W January 1, 1952 3–0 @ Chicago Black Hawks (1951–52) 17–15–4
37 W January 3, 1952 3–1 Toronto Maple Leafs (1951–52) 18–15–4
38 L January 5, 1952 2–3 Boston Bruins (1951–52) 18–16–4
39 W January 12, 1952 8–3 Chicago Black Hawks (1951–52) 19–16–4
40 T January 13, 1952 2–2 @ New York Rangers (1951–52) 19–16–5
41 T January 17, 1952 2–2 Toronto Maple Leafs (1951–52) 19–16–6
42 L January 19, 1952 0–4 Detroit Red Wings (1951–52) 19–17–6
43 L January 20, 1952 1–2 @ Boston Bruins (1951–52) 19–18–6
44 W January 23, 1952 4–2 @ Toronto Maple Leafs (1951–52) 20–18–6
45 W January 24, 1952 4–1 @ Chicago Black Hawks (1951–52) 21–18–6
46 W January 26, 1952 5–3 Boston Bruins (1951–52) 22–18–6
47 W January 27, 1952 5–3 @ New York Rangers (1951–52) 23–18–6
48 W January 31, 1952 1–0 New York Rangers (1951–52) 24–18–6
49 T February 2, 1952 2–2 Detroit Red Wings (1951–52) 24–18–7
50 L February 3, 1952 0–1 @ Boston Bruins (1951–52) 24–19–7
51 L February 7, 1952 3–5 @ Detroit Red Wings (1951–52) 24–20–7
52 L February 9, 1952 2–3 @ Toronto Maple Leafs (1951–52) 24–21–7
53 W February 10, 1952 3–2 @ Chicago Black Hawks (1951–52) 25–21–7
54 W February 14, 1952 3–1 Toronto Maple Leafs (1951–52) 26–21–7
55 W February 16, 1952 5–1 New York Rangers (1951–52) 27–21–7
56 L February 17, 1952 2–3 @ New York Rangers (1951–52) 27–22–7
57 T February 21, 1952 3–3 Boston Bruins (1951–52) 27–22–8
58 W February 23, 1952 7–0 Chicago Black Hawks (1951–52) 28–22–8
59 W February 28, 1952 3–2 Detroit Red Wings (1951–52) 29–22–8
60 W March 1, 1952 3–1 New York Rangers (1951–52) 30–22–8
61 W March 2, 1952 6–4 @ Chicago Black Hawks (1951–52) 31–22–8
62 L March 5, 1952 2–6 @ Toronto Maple Leafs (1951–52) 31–23–8
63 T March 8, 1952 4–4 Chicago Black Hawks (1951–52) 31–23–9
64 W March 9, 1952 2–0 @ New York Rangers (1951–52) 32–23–9
65 W March 13, 1952 3–1 Toronto Maple Leafs (1951–52) 33–23–9
66 L March 15, 1952 0–2 Boston Bruins (1951–52) 33–24–9
67 L March 16, 1952 1–2 @ Boston Bruins (1951–52) 33–25–9
68 W March 19, 1952 3–0 @ Toronto Maple Leafs (1951–52) 34–25–9
69 T March 22, 1952 3–3 Detroit Red Wings (1951–52) 34–25–10
70 L March 23, 1952 2–7 @ Detroit Red Wings (1951–52) 34–26–10

Playoffs[edit | edit source]

Montreal Canadiens 4, Boston Bruins 3[edit | edit source]

Having last met in the 1946 Stanley Cup Finals where the Habs defeated the Bruins 4 games to 1 with three games going to overtime, the 1952 Semi-final series would be even closer with Montreal edging Boston 4 games to 3. The series is famous for Jim Henry playing Games 6 and 7 with a broken nose and Maurice Richard scoring the Game 7 winning goal having been concussed and cut. The photo of the two battered players shaking hands has become iconic.

Game 1 at the Montreal Forum was a clean game that was dominated by Montreal. After Richard put the Habs up in the first period, he assisted on a goal by Dickie Moore in the second. The Bruins Pentti Lund, playing blind in one eye, cut the lead to 2-1 but Richard's second of the game made it 3-1 Montreal at the end of the second period. Goals by Billy Reay and Floyd Curry completed Montreal's 5-1 win.

Game 2 at Montreal was a repeat of Game 1 with a goal by Ken Mosdell and a Hat trick by Bernie Geoffrion. However, Mosdell collided with Boston's Ed Sandford, broke his right leg and was lost for the playoffs. Boston's Gus Kyle was also lost for the remainder of the series and was replaced with rookie Bob Armstrong, who'd go on to become a regular on the Bruins blueline for the next decade.

Game 3 at the Boston Garden had no goals in the first period. At 2:05 of the second period, Hal Laycoe's shot deflected off Doug Harvey's stick past Gerry McNeil for the Bruins first lead of the series. 33 seconds later, Dave Creighton made it 2-0 Boston. 29 seconds later, Ed Sandford's shot fell in the crease and as McNeil tried to clear it, he ran into Paul Meger who accidentally put the puck in his own net. Boston led 3-0 after scoring three goals in 1:02. In the third period, Fleming Mackell made it 4-0 until Montreal's Floyd Curry scored a consolation goal for a 4-1 Bruins win.

Game 4 at Boston saw the first career playoff goal by Real Chevrefils put the Bruins up 1-0 at 9:53 of the first period. In the second period, Milt Schmidt made it 2-0 until Mackell took a tripping penalty and Curry scored a late power play goal. At 6:48 of the third period, Curry tied the score until Mackell scored the game winner on a three on two break. With a 3-2 win, the Bruins had evened the series.

Game 5 at Montreal saw the Bruins play a defensive game. After two scoreless periods, Dave Creighton forced a turnover, passed to Johnny Peirson who fed it to Jack McIntyre. Flying down the right wing, the left shooting McIntyre fired a shot far side that beat McNeil. The Bruins held a 3-2 series lead with Jim Henry posting his first playoff shutout in 10 years.

Game 6 at Boston saw the Bruins jump out to a 2-0 lead on first period goals by Dave Creighton and Milt Schmidt. The Habs Eddie Mazur, who'd never appeared in a regular season game for them, cut the lead in half at 4:53 of the second period. Eight minutes into the third period, Bruins goalie Jim Henry had his nose broken by a Doug Harvey shot. The game was delayed for 17 minutes as Henry was treated. He courageously returned to play but with both eyes black and swollen, he struggled to see the puck at times. At 11:05, Richard fired a 30 foot shot through a screen that sent the game into overtime. After a scoreless first OT, Paul Masnick rapped in a rebound from a Harvey shot that ended the game at 7:49 of the second OT. The series was tied heading back to Montreal.

Game 7 at Montreal was an iconic game for Maurice Richard. In the second period, with the score tied on goals by Eddie Mazur and Ed Sandford, Richard's attempt to cut between Bruins Hal Laycoe and Leo Labine resulted in him falling and hitting his head on the ice. Bleeding from a cut above his left eye and unconscious, he was roused and brought to the dressing room for repairs. While being stitched up, he lost consciousness again. With five minutes left in the game and the teams playing four on four (Laycoe and Billy Reay were in the box for high sticking), Richard made his way back to the Habs bench. Assuring coach Dick Irvin that he was all right, Irvin could see Richard wasn't as he didn't know the game's score and admitted his vision was blurry. Nevertheless, Richard went on the ice, took a pass from Butch Bouchard on the right wing, beat Bill Quackenbush to the outside, faked a shot to the near post on Jim Henry, cut in front of the Bruins net and put the puck in the far side of the net (see Gallery for a photo). Deliriously happy Montreal fans rained debris on the ice and the game was stopped for 5 minutes to clean the mess up. With the Bruins goalie pulled, Bill Reay scored with 34 seconds left for a 3-1 Habs victory and the series win. The players shook hands after the game with Milt Schmidt congratulating Habs rookie Dickie Moore, who he'd battled for most of the series. Jim Henry and Richard's handshake became one of hockey's most iconic photos with Henry's blackened eyes from his broken nose and Richard's bandaged eye still bleeding.

# Date Visitor Score Home Record
1 March 25 Boston Bruins 1-5 Montreal Canadiens 0-1
2 March 27 Boston Bruins 0-4 Montreal Canadiens 0-2
3 March 30 Montreal Canadiens 1-4 Boston Bruins 2-1
4 April 1 Montreal Canadiens 2-3 Boston Bruins 2-2
5 April 3 Boston Bruins 1-0 Montreal Canadiens 3-2
6 April 6 Montreal Canadiens 3-2 (2OT) Boston Bruins 3-3
7 April 8 Boston Bruins 1-3 Montreal Canadiens 3-4

Detroit Red Wings 4, Montreal Canadiens 0[edit | edit source]

Player Stats[edit | edit source]

Regular Season[edit | edit source]

Scoring
Player Pos GP G A Pts PIM
Lach, ElmerElmer Lach C 70 15 50 65 36
Geoffrion, BernieBernie Geoffrion RW 67 30 24 54 66
Richard, MauriceMaurice Richard RW 48 27 17 44 44
Meger, PaulPaul Meger LW 69 24 18 42 44
Reay, BillyBilly Reay C 68 7 34 41 20
Gamble, DickDick Gamble LW 64 23 17 40 8
Curry, FloydFloyd Curry RW 64 20 18 38 10
Olmstead, BertBert Olmstead LW 69 7 28 35 49
Moore, DickieDickie Moore LW 33 18 15 33 44
Harvey, DougDoug Harvey D 68 6 23 29 82
Mosdell, KenKen Mosdell C 44 5 11 16 19
St. Laurent, DollardDollard St. Laurent D 40 3 10 13 30
Bouchard, ButchButch Bouchard D 60 3 9 12 45
McCormack, JohnJohn McCormack C 54 2 10 12 4
Johnson, TomTom Johnson D 67 0 7 7 76
Lowe, RossRoss Lowe D/LW 31 1 5 6 42
MacPherson, BudBud MacPherson D 54 2 1 3 24
Masnick, PaulPaul Masnick C 15 1 2 3 2
Davis, LorneLorne Davis RW 3 1 1 2 2
Couture, GerryGerry Couture RW 10 0 1 1 4
MacKay, CalumCalum MacKay LW 12 0 1 1 8
Marshall, DonDon Marshall LW 1 0 0 0 0
Achtymichuk, GeneGene Achtymichuk C 1 0 0 0 0
Edmundson, GarryGarry Edmundson LW 1 0 0 0 2
Fryday, BobBob Fryday RW 3 0 0 0 0
Malone, CliffCliff Malone RW 3 0 0 0 0
McNeil, GerryGerry McNeil G 70 0 0 0 0
Goaltending
Player MIN GP W L T GA GAA SO
McNeil, GerryGerry McNeil 4200 70 34 26 10 164 2.34 5
Team: 4200 70 34 26 10 164 2.34 5

Playoffs[edit | edit source]

Scoring
Player Pos GP G A Pts PIM
Curry, FloydFloyd Curry RW 11 4 3 7 6
Richard, MauriceMaurice Richard RW 11 4 2 6 6
Geoffrion, BernieBernie Geoffrion RW 11 3 1 4 6
Reay, BillyBilly Reay C 10 2 2 4 7
Lach, ElmerElmer Lach C 11 1 2 3 4
Harvey, DougDoug Harvey D 11 0 3 3 8
Meger, PaulPaul Meger LW 11 0 3 3 2
St. Laurent, DollardDollard St. Laurent D 9 0 3 3 6
Mazur, EddieEddie Mazur D/LW 5 2 0 2 4
Moore, DickieDickie Moore LW 11 1 1 2 12
Bouchard, ButchButch Bouchard D 11 0 2 2 14
Gamble, DickDick Gamble LW 7 0 2 2 0
Johnson, TomTom Johnson D 11 1 0 1 2
Masnick, PaulPaul Masnick C 6 1 0 1 12
Mosdell, KenKen Mosdell C 2 1 0 1 0
Olmstead, BertBert Olmstead LW 11 0 1 1 4
Edmundson, GarryGarry Edmundson LW 2 0 0 0 4
Long, StanStan Long D 3 0 0 0 0
MacPherson, BudBud MacPherson D 11 0 0 0 0
McNeil, GerryGerry McNeil G 11 0 0 0 0
Goaltending
Player MIN GP W L GA GAA SO
McNeil, GerryGerry McNeil 688 11 4 7 23 2.01 1
Team: 688 11 4 7 23 2.01 1

[1]

Note: GP = Games played; G = Goals; A = Assists; Pts = Points; +/- = Plus/Minus; PIM = Penalty Minutes; PPG=Power-play goals; SHG=Short-handed goals; GWG=Game-winning goals

MIN=Minutes played; W = Wins; L = Losses; T = Ties; GA = Goals Against; GAA = Goals Against Average; SO = Shutouts

Awards and Records[edit | edit source]

Transactions[edit | edit source]

Gallery[edit | edit source]

Video[edit | edit source]

Over 17 minutes of highlights with commentary from all four games of the Finals. Though blurry, nearly all goals are shown.

See Also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1951-52 Montreal Canadiens Statistics - Hockey-Reference.com. hockey-reference.com. Retrieved on 2009-05-28.
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