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09-11-2012, 05:39 PM
  #58
Rob Scuderi
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Originally Posted by tarheelhockey View Post
I wasn't clear what I was asking -- who was McGimsie's competition during hockey games? How many of his non-teammates are noteworthy players?

Scanlan played against teams like the Silver Seven and Montreal AAA as part of his regular season [edit: using "regular season" loosely, of course]. Who did McGimsie play against that was on such a level?



To say the least! Only one player ever put up McGimsie's video-game goal totals in the AHAC/CAHL, and that was Russell Bowie. The fact that McGimsie's ATD value is 800 picks inferior highlights the vast difference between the quality of the leagues. Bowie, and Scanlan for that matter, weren't playing against teams that would spot you 2 goals just for showing up.
This was asked awhile ago and while I can't drop a ton of names, I can tell you how I understand the western leagues were set up and give you a sense of their strength. I don't have an SIHR membership and used wikipedia for some of these leagues but it seems to make sense.

There were two split leagues until the 1904-05 season. McGimsie played in the Manitoba & Northwestern Hockey Association(MNWHA) from 1902-1904. This was a three team league consisting of the Rat Portage Thistles, Brandon Wheat Cities, and Portage la Prairie Plains. During these three years, Rat Portage and Brandon both challenged for the Stanley Cup once.

(Best-of-three format at this time)
  • In March 1903, Ottawa beat Rat Portage (MNWHA) in two games (10-4)
  • In March 1904, Ottawa beat Brandon (MNWHA) in two games (15-6)

After the 1903-04 season ended all three MNWHA clubs join the two clubs from what I'm calling the Winnipeg Senior Hockey League to form the MHL. McGimsie now competes with the Winnipeg Victorias and the Winnipeg Rowing Club. The Rowing Club featured Breen, but I am unsure if any of the big guns were still with the Vics (Bain was gone, was Gingras?). They were the Western equivalent of Montreal AAA, but they were already on the downswing by the time McGimsie started playing them in 04-05.

All that said, this is certainly a more competitive environment than McGimsie's first three years, so he deserves credit for peaking then. During these two seasons he put up ridiculous numbers Rat Portage/Kenora won the league championships. He outscored Breen and Phillips in '04-'05 before being bested by both in '05-'06. During these two season Rat Portage/Kenora was the only western team to compete for the Stanley Cup with the condensed league.

Kenora again won the league championship in '06-'07, which turned pro and lost the Vics and Winnipegs, and again challenged for the Stanley Cup winning this time. They did lose their first challenge however (McGimsie was hurt and didn't play) and McGimsie retired before the start of the next season.
  • March 1905, Ottawa beat Rat Portage (MHL) in 3 games (12-15)
  • 1906, no challengers from West
(format switches to 2 game total goals taking the win)
  • January 1907, Montreal Wanderers lost to Kenora (MHL) 8-12 (Kenora wins both games)
  • March 1907, Kenora loses to Montreal Wanderers (ECAHA) 8-12 (Montreal wins game 1, Kenora wins game 2)

That didn't help give you concrete answers of who exactly McGimsie was beating, but I think you have to give credit to the Western leagues for being the best Canada had to offer after the CAHL/ECAHA. The FAHL was obviously better the year they had Ottawa and the Wanderers but Smith Falls is the best McGimsie-overlapping FAHL club who were a one-time league champion and unsuccessful Stanley Cup challenger led by Percy LeSueur. It may also be worth noting some of the talent during McGimsie's career was lured to the WPHL or IPHL with their salaries.

I think by looking at how the Stanley Cup did and didn't move during the various challenges in McGimsie's career you can see the strength of the Thistles a bit better. How much credit McGimsie deserves for that is certainly an open question, but I was definitely impressed that they were essentially one of three teams to be relevant on the Stanley Cup level after the Winnipeg Vics and Montreal AAA wound down. Especially considering the other two teams were powerhouses in the most competitive leagues of the time.

(Teams representing McGimsie's league are bolded)
'02 - Stanley Cup held by Winnipeg Vics (WSHL)
Beat Toronto (OHA) in 2 games (10-6)
Lost to Montreal AAA (CAHL) in 3 games (2-7)

'03 - Stanley Cup held by Montreal (CAHL)
Beat Winnipeg Vics (WSHL) in 3 games (14-6)
Ottawa HC takes control of Stanley Cup beating Montreal in CAHL season's 2 game playoff (9-1)
Beat Rat Portage (MNWHA) in 2 games (10-4)

'04 - Stanley Cup held by Ottawa (CAHL)
Beat Winnipeg Rowing Club (WSHL) in 3 games (11-7)
Beat Toronto (OHA) in 2 games (17-5)
Montreal Wanderers (FAHL) DQ'd for refusing to play
Beat Brandon (MNWHA) in 2 games (15-6)

'05 - Stanley Cup held by Ottawa (FAHL)
Beat Dawson City (Yukon) in 2 games (31-4)
Beat Rat Portage (MHL) in 3 games (12-15)

'06 - Stanley Cup held by Ottawa (ECAHA)
Beat Queen's University (OHA) in 2 games (28-14)
Beat Smiths Falls (FAHL) in 2 games (14-7)
Montreal Wanderers take control of Stanley Cup beating Ottawa in 2 game total goal ECAHA playoff winning with 12 goals to 10 for Ottawa who won Game 2

'07 - Stanley Cup held by Montreal Wanderers (ECAHA); format switches to 2 game total goals taking the win
Beat New Glasgow Cubs (Novia Scotia) 17-5 (Montreal wins both games)
Lost to Kenora (MHL) 8-12 (Kenora wins both games)
Lost to Montreal (ECAHA) 8-12 (Montreal wins game 1, Kenora wins game 2)

Stanley Cup games won by league during McGimsie's career
CAHL/ECAHA - (Ottawa 12, Montreal Wanderers 4, Montreal AAA 4)
MHL - 4 (Kenora 4)
WSHL - 5 (Vics 4, Rowing Club 1)
FAHL - 4 (Ottawa 4)
MNWHA - 0
OHA - 0

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