All-Star, All-Time Canadian Hockey Team
CHARLES H. GOOD
PICKING all-star teams is the favorite indoor sport, of the athletic enthusiast. As to who started it, anybody’s guess is as good as mine. Perhaps it dates farther back than recorded history. No doubt the children of Israel indulged in it, and had there been sporting pages in those days we can imagine the sideline critic, at the end of the annual stone-slinging season, writing the sporting editor letters beginning:
“Dear Editor: The following is my selection for an All-Star All-Palestine Stone-Slinger’s Team.”
Then would follow the names, beginning with David; and the poor sporting editor would wearily say to his assistant: “Here’s another of these, now, All-Star nuts,” and toss the contribution among the rest of the junk on his desk to lie there till some day when sporting news was scarce, when it would fill up a corner of his page.
When MacLean’s Magazine told me it wanted an article on the greatest hockey players in history, I decided it was time the sporting editors got a little of their own back. For years the fans have been labo ing to give the experts information as to who are the greatest players in all lines. Now, why not let the experts dig down into their storehouses of experience and declare themselves? So I addressed a letter to about a hundred Canadian sporting editors and athletic experts asking them to select, for the readers of MacLean’s, those hockey players, past and present, who were the most brilliant exponents of the game in their respective positions—the “stand-outs,” in sporting parlance. This article is the result of the answers to that letter.
Of course, none of these teams could ever be assembled, because, in my questionnaire, it was expressly stipulated that all considerations of time and space should be disregarded, and so you will find on the selected teams stars of last century linked with present-day luminaries. Perhaps none of the teams selected will meet with your unqualified approval. It is difference of opinion that makes sport;
ALL-STARS, NUMBER ONE Goal: Georges Vezina, Canadiens, Montreal. Defence: Sprague Cleghorn, Canadiens, Montreal. Defence: Hod Stuart (deceased), Ottawa. Centre: Frank Nighbor, Ottawa. Right Wing: Allan “Scotty” Davidson (deceased), Kingston and Toronto. Left Wing: Tom Phillips (deceased), Toronto. Kenora and Ottawa.
and I may as well confess that the final totalling up of points showed one or two players in the money whom I, personally, wouldn’t have selected. But if the judgment of the experts doesn’t happen to coincide with your own, don’t blame me; I’m only the middle-man.
Toronto and Victoria Heard From
WA. HEWITT, sporting editor of the Toronto • Star, should know a hockey player when he sees one. As secretary of the O.H.A. for more than twenty years, and manager and honorary coach of two Olympic World’s Champion teams, he has seen plenty of good ones. In sending in his selections he adds that the two greatest teams he ever saw—as teams, not as individuals —were the Winnipeg Falcons of 1920, and the Granites of Toronto, of 1924. His selections as the most brilliant individual players are as follows: Goal, Percy LeSueur; defence, Hod Stuart and Eddie Gerard; centre, “Newsy” Lalonde; right wing, George Richardson; left wing, Tom Phillips.
A tough night’s work for any man’s team to tackle, that bunch. The great Lalonde, whose brain kept him a star long after his pins began to slow up, flanked on one side by George Richardson, of Kingston, and on the other by Tom Phillips, who put Kenora on the hockey map, and made it possible for the Toronto Marlboro’s to win a title, would guarantee any netminder against a dull evening. Back these three up with Eddie Gerard, once of Ottawa, and now coach of the Montreal Maroons, and Hod Stuart, whose brilliant career was cut off all too soon by an unfortunate swimming accident, put behind them the cool and capable LeSueur, and it would be a very starry side that would finish in front of them.
But a team might be selected that would give them one gosh-awful argument. Lester Patrick, formerly of McGill, picks one, for instance. Lester was some considerable hockeyist himself, not so many years ago, and with brother Frank is responsible for the present popularity of the game in the far West. From Victoria, B.C., Lester wires:
“My opinion is based on consistency of players over
a period of years, and the fact that men selected possessed nearly all the fundamentals of an ideal player physique, stamina, courage, speed, stick-handling, goalgetting ability, skill in passing, proper temperament and, above all, hockey brains.”
For goal-tender Patrick selects Hughie Lehman who went to Vancouver from Kitchener many years ago. On the defence he places Sprague Cleghorn, still a star with the Montreal Canadiens, beside Hod Stuart. And his forward line would be, in addition to Tom Phillips, Arthur Farrell of the old Montreal Shamrocks, and Fred “Cyclone” Taylor, who learned hockey in Listowel, Ontario, and practised it most successfully in various cities, ending with Vancouver.
Some Great Line-ups
HAVING heard from the Pacific coast let us “listen in” on an opinion from the other end of the country. J. E. Ahern, sporting editor of the Halifax Herald, selects as his ideal goal-tender. John Ross Roach, who guards the portals for the Toronto St. Patricks. On the defence he would team Alan “Scotty” Davidson, who left the old Toronto Professionals to die in the greater game in France, with Hod Stuart, whose name seems to be cropping up with great regularity. His first choice as snipers are Mickey MacKay, the Coast League flash. "New-
sy” Lalonde, and “Dubbie” Kerr, whose name will stir up memories in all those who remember the famous Ottawa teams of old.
Tommy Gorman, famous sportsman of Ottawa, thinks that Georges Vezina of Ottawa is about the best netminder that ever was; and we know a few hundred keen critics who would be inclined to string along with Tommy on this. His defence would be Gerard and Sprague Cleghorn; his forward line “Scotty” Davidson, Frank “Dutch” Nighbor, the Pembroke-Ottawa tactician, and George Hay of Regina. If the said Gorman picks that bunch you can pretty nearly gamble that they are good, because Tommy has managed several teams in his day—teams which hung crepe on many an enemy rink; and when the astute Tex Rickard, the world’s greatest sporting promoter, began to consider a professional hockey team in New York, it was Gorman’s advice he sought. In passing, we note that Tommy rates “Babe” Dye, the Toronto sharpshooter, as second only to “Scotty” Davidson as a right winger.
Sooner or later all roads lead to Montreal, and we pick from the stack of replies that of W. J. Morrison, sporting editor of the Gazette, and a goaler of some repute in his day. On Billy’s ideal forward line we find Billy Burch of Hamilton, Cy. Dennenay, the CornwallOttawa marksman, and “Babe” Dye. His defence would be George “Buck” Boucher and Sprague Cleghorn in front of “Praying Clint”
Benedict, whose passing from Ottawa to Montreal was one of the sensations of the present season. In an accompanying note Morrison says that these are his choice among the players of modern days. His “oldtime” stars—stand-outs of the late ’nineties—would be Merritt in goal, Mike Grant and Harvey Pulford on the defence, and Tom Phillips, Frank Magee and Jim Gardner up on the firing line.
We have all heard of the golfer who thought that Sandy Hook was an exponent of the Royal and Ancient, but we have yet to run across anyone holding the opinion that Lou Marsh was a swamp.
Hockey fans everywhere know this noted bell-ringer who probably has refereed more games than any other referee anywhere. He broke in many years ago as a sport writer and referee and his acquaintance with players, professional and amateur is profound. His choice for goal is Percy LeSueur with Hod Stuart and Sprague Cleghorn on the defence and Russell Bowie, Harry Watson and “Scotty” Davidson in attacking roles. He also has kind words to say for Frank Frederickson, Tommy Phillips and “Babe” Dye, and also for Vezina and Eddie Gerard.
What the Middle West Fancies
DRUCE BOREHAM, sporting editor of the Winnipeg ^ Tribune has seen many famous players, but he does not hesitate to give the palm as a defence man to Stan. Brown of the Soo and of Dentals.
NUMBER TWO TEAM
Goal: Percy LeSueur, Quebec City, Toronto and Ottawa. Defence: Eddie Gerard, Ottawa. Defence: George Boucher, Ottawa. Centre: Russell Bowie (amateur), Montreal. Right Wing: “Babe” Dye, Toronto. Left Wing: Harry Watson (amateur), Toronto.
Boreham also gives “Babe” Dye a place of honor on his all-star team, and like many other experts selects Eddie Gerard and Vezina for the rear guard. Simpson Hay of Regina and “Cyclone” Taylor in his opinion would round out an aggregation hard to beat.
Here’s a broadcast from Edmonton that should fall on receptive ears. Sporting editor K. G. H. McConnell announcing: The Bulletin scribe lets it be known that
he considers Gordon Keats as good a centre man as ever was, and Eddie Livingstone who was responsible for sponsoring that go-getter when he came to Toronto in war time will undoubtedly say, “hear, hear!” if he
happens to be listening in. Mac. nominates LeSueur for goal, Joe Simpson and George Boucher for defence, and Tommy Phillips and Alf. Smith as Keat’s associates on the front line. It would take a pretty good team to lower the colors of this gang, too.
Some Classy Organizations
DUT Roy Halpin of the Quebec Daily Telegraph would not be afraid to match his assortment of veterans and near veterans against the team picked by the western sport specialist. Here’s Halpin’s tally: Vezina in goal; Cleghorn and Art Ross, defence; Cyclone Taylor, Joe Malone and Aurel Joliat, forwards. Mr. Halpin’s comments should be of interest.
“I would like to state,” he pronounces, “that you have given the boys a man-size job. Hockey changed with the times; even the rules altered considerably. Old-timers were forced to play two half-hour periods, which was quite a grind, and apart from this there were fourteen players on the ice. W ith the change to six-man hockey the game speeded up considerably, while the periods were cut from thirty minutes to twenty. This change helped the boys to continue at top speed, and even old players admit that hockey to-day is much faster than it was ten or fifteen years ago.”
In view of the Soo’s prominent position on the amateu r
NUMBER THREE TEAM Goal: Benedict, Ottawa and Montreal, or Lehman, of Vancouver (equal votes). Defence: Simpson, Edmonton. Defence: Lester Patrick, Victoria, or Art Ross, Montreal (equal votes). Centre: Newsy Lalonde. Right Wing: George Richardson (deceased>. Kingston (amateur). Left Wing: Cyclone Taylor. Listowel and Vancouver.
hockey map no compendium of this sort would be complete without the opinion of an authority from the home of the Canadian champions. Ross Mackay of the Star takes two pokes at the puck, splitting his selections into amateur and pro. sections. His all-star simon-pure sextette would line up like this: Goal,
“Flat” Walsh; defence, “Babe” Donnelly and Beattie Ramsay; and forwards, Harry Watson, Bellefeuille and Bill Carson. As for the pro’s, he expresses a preference for Vezina for goal; defence, Hod Stuart and Sprague Cleghorn, and forward would place Frank Nighbor, Tommy Phillips and Scotty Davidson.
Because of the fact that Harry Scott was somewhat of a nifty himself as a puckchaser before he branched out as a sporting scribe in Calgary the opinion of the former N.H.L. player possesses much authority. ! He has played with and against most of the stars that he lists, although it is likely that Hod Stuart and Tom Phillips whom he names on his first team had passed off the stage when he was an active participant in the great winter game. Vezina, Ernie Johnson, Hod Stuart, Newsy Lalonde, Tommy Phillips and Cyclone Taylor are the Calgarian’s selections. Q
Dr. Gibson, who was a stalwart of the Houghton team between the years 1902 and 1907 was as great a defence player as ever played the game, in the opinion of O. F. Young of Port Arthur. In giving him the call over all the other stars Mr. Young describes him as Continued on page 36
All-Star, All-Time Canadian Hockey Team
Continued from page 25
being big, powerful and fast as well as brainy. Roy Brown of the Soo in 19051907 is another who lives in his memory as a past master in the art of defensive play, and he thinks that this pair, along with Lehman, would form an adequate defence for any team. Russell Bowie, Frank Nighbor and Tom Phillips are Mr. Young’s selections for forwards.
As a player of many years’ standing, a referee of distinction, and a coach of note, Art Ross, now manager of the illfated Boston Bruins, is a man worth listening to. He knows the game and its players as few men do and his “guess” undoubtedly will be received with more than passing interest. Mr. Ross refuses to confine himself to a paltry half dozen and includes ten names as his selection of the stars of all time, as follows: Goal, Paddy Moran; defence. Hod Stuart. (Wanderers) Si. Griffiths, (Kenora) Lester Patrick. (Victoria); forwards.
I Tom Phillips, Russell Bowie. “Cyclone” Taylor. Frank Nighbor, Frank Magee and Tony Gingras, the latter of Winnipeg.
Ross’s list differs somewhat from that supplied by Frank Shaughnessey, the famous rugby, baseball and hockey coach, whose all-star all-time team would comprise: Benedict in goal, Hod Stuart and Eddie Gerard, defence; Russell
Bowie, Alf. Smith and Tom Phillips, forwards.
THIRTY-FIVE years is a long, long while, and many stars have shone and waned in that time, and so James T. Sutherland, of Kingston, one of the pioneers of the sport, in forwarding his contribution writes that he is afraid he could not do justice to the many wonderful players he has seen in his almost two score years’ connection with hockey, if limited to the selection of one team. The old-timer, therefore, submits all-star teams for two periods, covering their amateur affiliations only. His first consignment of stellar chiefs, 1891 to 1911, includes: Goal, Riley Hern (Stratford) and Eddie Hiscock (Kingston); defence, Pulford (Ottawa), Guy Curtis (Queen’s), Molson (McGill) and Dr. Rankin (Stratford); forwards, “Cyclone” Taylor (Listowel), Russell Bowie (Montreal), George Richardson (Kingston), Trihey (Montreal Shamrocks), Marty Walsh (Kingston), Tom Phillips (Toronto Marlboros), George Chadwick and George McKay (Toronto Wellingtons), and Jock Harty (Queen’s).
Here is his 1912-1925 period: Goal, Continued on page 40
Continued from page 36 Dr. Charles Stewart (Hamilton and Kingston) Dr. Jack Langtry (Varsity) and “Flat” Walsh (Soo); defence, “Scotty” Davidson (Kingston), “Babe” Donnelly (Soo), Hughie Fox (Granites), Glad Murphy (St. Michaels) and Beattie Ramsay (Varsity); forwards, Harry Watson (Granites), Frederickson (Winnipeg), Boo Anderson (Montreal), Morenz (Stratford), Cook (Kingston), Babe Dye (Aura Lee), Johnny Woodruff, (Queen’s and Soo), and Shorty Green (Sudbury). An imposing list, this, and any manager would not go far astray if he dipped into the bunch and selected a team at random.
Experts’ Generous Help
BILL TACKABERY of the Mail and Empire, Toronto, Basil O’Meara and Ed. Baker, Ottawa, “Dusty” Rhodes of London, Walter McMullen of Hamilton, E. W. Ferguson of Montreal, Joe Kincaid of Regina and many other experts materially assisted in this attempt to nail up the “who’s who” in hockey, and, but for their kindly help, the bally thing
in all probability would never have arrived anywhere. Team play counts for a great deal in other things than hockey.
I had almost overlooked W. A. Boys, M.P., who spared time from his parliamentary duties to write to the effect that he considered the famous Victorias of Winnipeg the greatest aggregation of amateurs he ever saw. Bain, who was then the champion skater of Canada, and Higinbotham, who originally came from Bowman ville and who both were members of the Victorias, were, in his opinion, the outstanding players of that time. It might be said at this juncture that Mr. Boys himself was no mean performer as a puck chaser.
To make the final selection of those who might be classed as the shock troops of the sport—the big moguls of a game that packs more thrills to the minute than any other competitive pastime in the world is a task of no small nature.
However, to arrive at a conclusive decision I made the finals on a point basis, which was the only fair way.
Now look over the choices for the first three teams!