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03-21-2013, 04:39 PM
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Originally Posted by saskganesh View Post
That dressing room must just have been toxic.
Ya, my understanding of the situation from what was reported at the time (along with bio's etc in subsequent years), and I used to follow it very closely was that really, the Leafs dressing room had been in a state of disarray, a culture of cliques & camps since 57 or so. The quashing of the first attempts in forming a players union, Conn Smythes retreat with Stafford & Ballard taking over, the arrival of Imlach, winning Cups in spite of the guy not because of him. Not everyone loathed or despised Punch, but a good majority certainly did. Selling the farm, off-loading future talent, running on fumes, engines with a lot of mileage, playing trap. This dysfunctional culture once entrenched stuck around like a bad smell right through the 70's & into the 80's. Passed on from veterans to rookies, rookies becoming veterans, passed on again, unbroken cycle for near on 3 decades. Had Harold lived another 10, 20 years, I shudder to think how bad it mightve gotten, then again, the last what, 7 years? Doesnt get much worse, though Im sure if Ballard had been around he'd have found a way, maybe, then again, the manner in which MLSE went about bailing on the Gardens, pretty deplorable. Criminal in my opinion.

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