It's not really 'dishing the dirt', but I thought it was a very nice video of 8-10 ATD players.
I would recommend taking 10 minutes of your time and looking at the full video. If not, my summary if you just want to skim through it:
- You can see Viacheslav Starshinov speed at around 1:30. Was it VMBM that said something like: ''he was slow, but not dramatically''? Anyway, seems to be accurate.
- Lennart Svedberg at the 2:10 time is very impressive. Big guy with decent skating, beat two Russian player on a nice move and a great pass for a goal. Wow!
- At around 4:00, you can see just how impressive #13 Boris Mikhailov and especially #16 Valeri Kharlamov are. Very nice play. They are the best two players during that whole video.
- You can see Mikhailov speed on a breakaway at 5:20 and his overall impressive skillset afterwards. Far more than a 'glue guy', using ATD term.
- On a side note, first time I see a goaltender (Sweden) playing with an helmet with no facial protection!
- I was looking at this video, mainly because of my new acquisition, Vladimir Vikulov. You see him once in this, at the 7:40 mark, but wow! Great speed, soft hand, mystify the defenceman and beat the Swedish goaltender with a nice backend. I had to see it twice to fully appreciate the play. On a side note, Vikulov also beat T.Esposito in the Summit Series in Game 5 with a nice backend shot. Perhaps it was a weapon he liked to use, although we obviously cannot draw conclusion on two goals!
- Last but not least, #10 Alexander Maltsev at around 8:00 that completely mystify the Swedish defence to score a very nice one!
Hope some people enjoyed it!
Starshinov may have been past his prime by 1970, although I don't know if it had had an effect on his speed or not. In the lone game he played in the 1972 Summit series (centering Maltsev and Kharlamov), he looks very slow. I'd like to see more games from the Sixties...
Mikhailov's skating/speed does look pretty impressive in this vid, but I've never been overly impressed by him as a skater; maybe the opponent (good but not great) makes him look juuuust a little bit better than he was. He couldn't do quite those things when he played against Canada
- Definitely, we have to use those videos in their context. Starshinov was at the twilight on his career, so his skating was probably already affected at that time.
- That was my thought as well. I never thought Mikhailov as an electrifying skater like Kharlamov or Maltsev, but on this video he looks phenomenal.
- Obviously, little typo!
Do anyone knows if we can save youtube videos on our computer? It's those kind of hockey videos I would like to save and keep for a long time, or else we're only hopeful that the person who owns it will not take it down.
Last edited by EagleBelfour: 03-15-2011 at 06:33 PM.
Do anyone knows if we can save youtube videos on our computer? It's those kind of hockey videos I would like to save and keep for a long time, or else we're only hopeful that the person who owns it will not take it down.
I am pretty sure a lot of video conversion programs do this.
I went through about 20 video programs in the past month, looking for the best one that deserved my money. In at least a couple of the ones I tried, I noticed the "save from youtube" feature.
If you do a google search, I bet it isn't hard to find a few.
Posting this here, because it has implications far beyond the one player:
An "ancient" 31 year old Bilyaletdinov was added to a declining Soviet Club in 1987, out of desperation.
There is a feeling among long-time international observers that the Soviet program is in a state of transition, both in style and personnel. Although the Soviets have been playing hockey for 40 years, their game may be experiencing its first growing pains.
In one move interpreted as desperation, 31-year-old Zinetula Bilyaletdinov was added to the touring squad shortly before the Soviets left for Quebec, although he hadn't qualfied for the national squad in years. (For the Soviets, 30 is nearly ancient in hockey terms. Once past that "golden" age, players are routinely farmed out or given coaching duties.)
The pool of young talent has evidently dried up. The Soviets went victoryless in the recent fight-filled junior championships. [Alan Eagleson] said he couldn't recall seeing a worse collection of Soviet
-Providence Journal, Feb 14, 1987
Seems the Soviet Hockey system was in decline in the late 80s, even before the fall of the Berlin Wall. This after its "peak" in the early-mid 80s. Speculation: Did Tikhonov throw away too many players he didn't like?
Either way, it explains one of the great mysteries of the fall of the USSR related to hockey. I've seen it asked on the History of Hockey board - was Fetisov really that good or did he just look good compared to the other Soviet defensemen? It's an logical question - while many Russian forwards have been huge impact players in the NHL, their defensemen really haven't been, with the exceptions of single year blips from Konstantinov and Zubov.
This shows, however, that well before the fall of the Iron Curtain, the USSR hockey program was already in decline, especially when it comes to defensemen.
Don't know if this was known before, but apparently Lester Patrick was a very strict coach:
"Like Smythe, Patrick was a martinet who demanded strict obedience from his charges. He, too, was particularly rigid regarding curfews."
From Flakes of Winter.
Strict, but fair.
"By the way, you are all probably aware that Mr. Boucher is a native of this fair capitol of Canada and, no doubt, has many willing friends here. If, as I suspect, Mr. Boucher has arranged a beer party for you, please use common sense and be moderate in your bibbling, and return here at reasonable time."
Now quite by coincidence, friends of mine had lined up a party for us in Hull, an all-night town where staid Ottawa does its drinking. And after the game - which we won by a score of 9-1 - we had a wonderful time. These friends had hired a fiddler, an accordion player, and a piano player, and of course there was loads of that superb Canadian ale in kegs, as well as cold cuts, numerous kinds of breads, pickles, and sausage rolls.
At about 2:45 in the morning I realized we had better get back to our sleeping car. I was concerned that some of the boys, feeling no pain whatever, might awaken Lester clambering aboard. So I cautioned them and they were quiet as mice as we made our way to our berths.
I slept like a babe until 10:30. When I awakened our car was rolling across the snow-covered countryside and I felt unusually hungry. I headed for the diner, looking forward to a huge breakfast because I dearly loved the dining cars on trains.
Well, there was only one other person in the diner, Lester Patrick himself; so, naturally, I had to join him. He turned out to be in great good spirits, however, commenting on what a beautiful day it was, how well the team had played the night before, and what a fine game I had played.
But, suddenly, without warning, he fixed me with a long glance.
"By the way, Mr. Boucher," Lester said, "did you know that Mr. Keeling walks in his sleep?" He was talking about Butch Keeling, the big-boned leftwinger we'd acquired from Toronto. Lester's mood had seemed bouyant enough but the misters were always ominous.
"My goodness, Lester, I hope you're kidding," I said in wide-eyed innocence. "I certainly didn't know that about Butch."
"No, Mr. Boucher, I am not kidding. Some time after we left Ottawa early this morning, the door to my compartment opened and there stood Mr. Keeling. Are you aware, Mr. Boucher, that Mr. Keeling doe not wear pyjamas? He wears only one of of those silly undershirts that barely reaches his navel. As I came awake and stared incredulously at him, he began to urinate on my floor. I called out to him, 'Butch, Butch, what the devil are you doing?'
"Now, Mr. Boucher, you can believe this or not, but Mr. Keeling put his finger to his lips and said 'sh-h-h-h, don't wake Lester!' "
And Suddenly Lester burst out laughing there in the sunswept diner. "Oh, Frank," he gasped, tears coming to his eyes. "It was delightful!"
In later years, when Lester became vice-president of the Garden corporation and I was moved up from coach to general manager, he and I had some grave differences that led to a terrible breach. But during his seasons as our coach he was a marvellous man to play for and, as I indicated earlier, there was no more memorable moment in all Ranger history than the night he took over in goal that spring of 1928. Indeed, it was the climax to a quite remarkable season, our second year in New York.
Canadiens are generally regarded as the speediest team in the NHL and there are some who are inclined to the belief that it is a case of speed versus brawn, when the Frenchmen meet Maroons, but this is far from the case.
Canadiens possess plenty of speed, 'tis true, but Maroons are far removed from the truck-horse class. Collectively, the Gerardmen have just as much zip as the Habitants. Siebert, if that player is fit (was in hospital with illness), and Dutton are faster than Gardiner and Mantha, the Canadiens defence regulars, and Munro has a little on "Battleship" Leduc, in point of speed. At centre, Howie Morenz has much more "foot" than Hooley Smith and Art Gagne can skate away from Nels Stewart, but Jimmy Ward uncorks more speed than Aurel Joliat, his check. The Maroon reserves for the forward line, Joe Lamb, Bill Phillips and Russ Oatman, are faster than any 3 players manager Hart can shoot into the game for similar duty. In the matter of poundage, Maroons as a team are heavier than Canadiens, although there is very little difference in the weight of the rival defences. Morenz and Smith tip the beam at about the same notch, but Stewart and Ward outweigh the Canadien wings by many pounds. Taking it all in all, the teams appear to be evenly matched.
Maroons seem to have had a reputation as a physical team. Eddie Gerard apparently liked to change lines more often than other coaches, to allow his players to play harder and faster.
but i was reading about '35 finals, and Maroons apparently had a reputation in '35 for speed, and not at all for physicality. they were very physical in game 1, and Calgary Daily Herald said it was very surprising. even the small Maroons played with physicality.
Some information on Frank Boucher's checking proclivities:
We'll start in 1922, with a recap of his performance in the previous season for the Ottawa Sens - from the Ottawa Citizen: October 26, 1922:
Frank Boucher, who was one of the best second string men in the National Hockey Association, will leave for Vancouver at 1:40 tomorrow morning...
Coming from the west last fall, he was secured by Ottawas, and from the first of the season showed promise of being a noted addition to the ranks of the famous family. Used at center ice, a real opportunity never really came his way till Frank Nighbor was put out of the game for ten days when Sprague Cleghorn cut loose in the memorable Canadien game here. Stepping into the poke check wonder's place, Frank immediately went in solid with the local fans, and his aggressive and consistent play earned him a high place in the N.H.A. lists.
While his passing to Vancouver is regretted by Ottawa fans, every good luck goes with him, and the only thing we cannot wish him is that he may help Vancouver beat Ottawa for the Stanley Cup next spring. A clever stick-handler, a good shot, a rugged check, and with plenty of speed, he has all the necessary requirements of a first-class big leaguer, and there is no reason why he should not make good with a vengeance in the Coast aggregation.
Here is the reaction of the Vancouver paper in Boucher's rookie year in the PCHA - from the Vancouver Sun: December 12, 1922:
In a thrilling three-reel film, starring the juvenile Frank Boucher, the Vancouver Maroons last night advanced into sole tenancy of second place in the coast hockey circuit over the rugged opposition of the Victoria Cougars. The score was 2 to 1. Boucher skated right into the hearts of the fans within half a minute of the start, when he stole the puck at the Victoria blue line, wormed his way close in on xxxxxx and flipped the gutta percha into the strings from a hard angle.
From then on he continued to be the star of the piece. His stickhandling was a revelation to the paid attendance and a constant knife under the ribs of the opposition, who allowed their resentment to show itself in efforts to rough-house the youngster out of his stride. But Frankie stood up under the punishment and still kept standing the Cougars on their heads. He skated back all the way with his check, repeatedly hooked the rubber away and dashed into enemy territory, where he wriggled through time after time and spanked the pill dead on the nets. Nice stops by xxxxxx, however, robbed him of any further scores.
In the final period Boucher played chiefly on the defense, where his poke-checking broke up a dozen attacks. Altogether the young Ottawan turned in a pretty flossy exhibition and the fans whooped for him from start to finish in a way that left no doubt that he was elected.
Pretty interesting stuff. Boucher had excellent tutors as a young player, serving as understudy to both Nighbor and MacKay, though he seems to have been a fine defensive player before MacKay had time to teach him anything.
The next bit is from the 1923 Cup semifinals series between Vancouver and Ottawa. From the Calgary Daily Herald: March 20, 1923:
The Maroons were masters of the situation one minute and eighteen seconds after the initial faceoff, when Duncan swept down the ice in one of his irresistible rushes and parked the disk behind Benedict for the west's first goal in two games. Thereafter the Maroons were never in danger. Skinner worked the puck down shortly after and passed back to Boucher from the extreme right corner behind Benedict, and Frank snapped the puck into the corner of the net.
Vancouver made the evening safe for democracy shortly afterward, when Boucher took a pass from xxxxxx and again beat the tall, solemn goalie from beyond the Rockies...
Clancy played a fair game and so did Hitchman, but the veterans of the Senators, which form their team, get but short rests, as the subs weaken their team not a little. On the other hand, Vancouver has three perfectly good regulars in xxxxxx, Harris and Denneny, that is a margin of superiority which is bound to tell over a three out of five series. Alf Skinner played his best hockey of the season, he was in on almost every play and repeatedly worried the defense and Benedict by his dashing tactics.
George Boucher was the bright individual star for the Senators. He has no peers in movements designed to bring goals and the one he got for his team was well deserved. He was cheered again and again last night, not a voice being raised against him, although his tactics on defense were much more strenuous than anything charged to Gerard who seemed off color all evening.
Benedict got another hard crack, when MacKay's shot hit him on the mouth from two or three feet out; he fell to the ice and the game was halted while he was being patched up. But he played fine hockey, as did Art Duncan, Mickey MacKay and Frank Boucher. That elusive youngster played marvellous hockey and time after time Brother George turned to see who was the annoying player, to discover it was Frank, the kid, and let it go at that...
The period ended with G. Boucher skating furiously to escape his brother Frank, who clung to his heels in an effort to hook the puck away from him.
I include the above as much for color on the other players as for Boucher.
Next, we move forward to game 5 of the same series, in which Boucher stars. From the Vancouver Sun: March 27, 1923:
Ottawa's victory was decisive, convincing and alibi-proof. The Senators skated as fast as their opponents, combined play better, back-checked more closely and shot harder and more accurately. The 5-1 score was perhaps a bigger margin that the play warranted, but there was no doubt in the minds of the 8000 fans present that the better team won.
A long shot by George Boucher from the left boards, away out by the blue line, that Lehman touched with his arm but failed to stop, put Ottawa one to the good seven minutes from the start...
Vancouver failed to show the stuff that beat out Victoria and Seattle for the coast title. Frank Boucher, Harris and xxxxx all played up to their best form, but MacKay was lost in his unaccustomed position at right wing, where he replaced the injured Skinner. Duncan failed to put the finishing touch to his rushes that marked his work last week. Cook was fair, but not as good as he has been at times. Lehman was far from the form that won him the sobriquet of "Eagle Eye". Corbett Denneny made some nice efforts when he got a couple of fairly long spells on the ice.
Frank Boucher was the best of the local forward line. He was back at his old game of hook-checking and stealing, and his back-checking was excellent. More than once he whizzed back on the defense in time to avert goals, and on the attacking end he contributed a number of clever passes and an occasional stinging shot. Harris and Duncan both slammed a number of hot ones at the nets, but with one exception, Benedict handled them all to perfection.
It's a very interesting game report for a number of reasons, Boucher's play being but one of them. It would seem (and this is the local Vancouver paper, so we should take this seriously) that Mickey MacKay was not quite as often and not quite as good a right winger as maybe we've been led to believe in the ATD, and that Hugh Lehman made something of a habit of letting in bad goals in the playoffs.
So that about wraps up the information on Boucher's time in Vancouver.
Last edited by Sturminator: 03-30-2011 at 06:39 AM.
We now move forward to Boucher's time in New York. I am trying to stick to playoff game reports from neutral publications, as I view them as the most valuable match reports, and they are at any rate generally more detailed than regular season reports. This report is from game 1 of the 1927 cup semifinals between New York and Boston - the Calgary Daily Herald: April 4, 1927:
Bruins were the more aggressive throughout. Chabot in goal for New York made 28 stops as against 15 by xxxxx. But the Rangers were the more brilliant in action. The high scoring Bill Cook was too closely checked to be effective, but Frank Boucher, New York centre, was everywhere on the ice, and his work was a spectacle.
I think phrases like "everywhere on the ice" are clearly indicative of strong all-around play. The above game ended in a scoreless tie, just for reference. This next one is from a playoff series the next year, again between New York and Boston - from the Montreal Gazette: April 2, 1928:
New York, April 1 - Sixty minutes of torrid hockey between the Boston Bruins and the New York Rangers ended in a 1-1 deadlock here tonight...
Both goals were scored within three minutes of the start of the final period. Frank Boucher, Ranger centre player, connected with a pass from behind the net to beat xxxxx for the first goal. Seventy-two seconds later a three-man Bruins rush tied the score, Harry Oliver, right winger, shooting the puck past Lorne Chabot.
The game, played before a crowd of 18,000 persons, was featured by the brilliant defense of both teams...
The poke-checking of xxxxx and Boucher were outstanding features of the bruising game, and the crowd was not slow to appreciate their work.
Seems that the Rangers and Bruins waged some very defensive playoff battles in the early 20's, and that Frank Boucher was outstanding in this sort of contest. His mark would have been Frank Fredrickson, no offensive slouch, himself. Later in 1928 - this bit is a preview of the Rangers / Maroons Cup final - from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: April 5, 1928:
Out of the welter of preliminary rounds in the National Hockey League battle for the historic Stanley Cup, the world series of the ice world, Frank Boucher, diminutive center ice star of the New York Rangers, has come to stamp himself as one of the greatest players in the game.
Boucher will lead the Rangers on the ice of the Montreal Maroons in the Canadian metropolis tomorrow night for the first of the final five-game series for the professional hockey title...
The brilliance of Boucher stands out above all others in a composite score of the preliminary efforts of the two teams fighting tomorrow night in the championship. Boucher tallied three goals, assisted in the scoring of three others, and spent no time in the penalty box...
Boucher, recipient of the Lady Byng trophy for combining effectiveness with sportsmanship, played through the four games without once incurring the displeasure of the referees. In addition to leading all scorers, Boucher was a tower of strength on the defense, his sweeping poke-check smashed dozens of attacks of Pittsburgh and Boston forwards.
This is pretty heady stuff coming from a neutral paper. From this period, the phrase "tower of strength" seems to have been reserved for only the very best defensive players. Outside of the above, I have only seen it used in describing Frank Nighbor, Hooley Smith, Pit Lepine, though my knowledge of the period is, of course, not comprehensive.
This last one (because I think this is enough), is a preview of an exhibition series in New York after the Rangers were eliminated from the playoffs. From the Vancouver Sun - April 2, 1931:
"Raffles" To Be Here
Frank Boucher was named on the second team and is again the winner of the Byng trophy awarded to the cleanest and most useful player to his club in the big league. Boucher is almost as well known in Vancouver as xxxxxx. He was called "Raffles" with the old Maroons because of his uncanny stickhandling ability and his penchant for hooking the puck from opposing players.
Ching Johnson is probably the most talked of player in hockey. He is a veritable dynamo on the ice, carries more scars than the average and is always tearing in for more.
I think that should suffice to demonstrate Boucher's defensive excellence, especially given that almost all of the sources are neutral publications and all but one of the game reports come from playoff games (there are a lot more mentions of his defensive work in New York Times regular season game reports, but I didn't think it was necessary, and at any rate they can't be linked). Boucher was credited for his great defensive work throughout his career by fans and observers all around the hockey world, and excelled in the tight-checking style of hockey which was prevelant at the time. Among regular starting forwards (so leaving out reserve Pit Lepine, who is harder to judge because of his role), Boucher seems to have been second only to Hooley Smith in terms of defensive value. In fact, Lepine himself (in the previously posted article) points out Smith and then Boucher as the best hook-checkers in the league, before going on to mention his teammates.
Triumph for Gorman
For Thomas Patrick Gorman, the canny coach who rebuilt the Maroons this season, it was a personal triumph. He coached Chicago to a Stanley Cup triumph last year then shifted to Montreal to teach a notoriously weak defensive team his system of "fore checking" and back checking that carried them to a world's championship.
i had not known that maroons were notoriously weak defensively before gorman.
maroons also added connell and lionel conacher in '35.
Originally Posted by Border Cities Star: 12-14-1932
Northcott today ranks as one of the most promising forwards in the National League, with all the necessary equipment to fight his way to a scoring championship. He is a tireless worker, one of the fastest skaters on the circuit, ruggedly constructed to withstand any heavy pounding from hard-hitting defense opposition and gifted with a spirit of competition that makes him an invaluable member of the Maroons. He joined the Maroons in 1929-30 and scored 10 goals and 1 assist. In 1930-31, he divided his time between the Maroons and the (Windsor) Bulldogs. With the Maroons he harvested 7 goals and 3 assists, with Bulldogs 12 goals and 6 assists. Last winter he was well up among the leading scorers with 19 goals and 6 assists.
northcott was leading the NHL in scoring when that was written.
northcott once got a major penalty for too many men:
Originally Posted by Montreal Gazette: 3-6-1931
A moment later, there was a mix-up in the Maroon substitutions and the referees caught the visitors with 7 men on the ice. Northcott was given a major for the offence, and with a minute to go, the Leafs dashed up 5 men abreast in an attempt to pull the game out of the fire.
from game 1 of '28 finals:
Originally Posted by Montreal Gazette: 4-6-1928
The two Cooks, with their flashy style, and the crafty Frank Boucher, continue as prime favorites here. But Ching Johnson, 220 pounder on the Ranger defence, is still the local "hate." Johnson plays a clean, robust game. He received as many spills as he handed out last night, particularly when he ran into Dunc Munro and was crashed to the delight of Maroon devotees.
from game 2 of '28 finals:
Originally Posted by Montreal Gazette: 4-9-1928
Montreal fans still hold Ching Johnson, the big Ranger guard, as their chief "hate." But Johnson plays a game that is much more to the book than the cross-checking style of Taffy Abel, who has a hard time keeping his stick down to the proper level.
i had only read before that johnson was not a clean player.
from game 3 of '28 finals:
Originally Posted by Montreal Gazette: 4-11-1928
Red Dutton took the final penalty of the match for chopping at Ching Johnson, Montreal fandom's chief "hate." Dutton objected to Johnson's ubiquitous elbows.
The crowd were shrieking for penalties against Ching Johnson, whose style of bringing up the elbow around the face practically every time he bodies an opponent was not to the liking of Maroon supporters.
It was like watching a pinch-hitter come up to the plate to see Eddie Shore skate out from the Boston bench on Saturday night and take up his position at a faceoff.... The Bruins were trailing, 2-1, with only about 4 minutes to go, when a faceoff was called deep in Maroon territory.... The referee had been about to drop the puck when Art Ross signaled him to wait a second.... Shore was sent out to replace the centre-man and try for the draw.... Shore delivered in the best manner of the successful pinch-hitter.... He didn't get the puck out directly, but he went out and fought for it.... Finally he fired it out front and after three rebounds, Eddie himself shot it home for the goal that gave Bruins a tie.... History repeated itself on this play, for it was a similar effort by Shore, getting the draw on a faceoff, that resulted in the winning goal for Bruins when they last visited Maroons.... After the game, Maroons, though being disappointed at being forced to accept a draw when they were so close to victory, paid tribute to Shore as still being "a great hockey player".... Maroons feel the only way for a team to counter-act Shore's power on faceoffs and and reduce the menace is to send its biggest, strongest defenceman up against him as the puck is dropped.... For nowadays, when there is a faceoff inside one club's blue line, the defending centre's duty is to take his vis-a-vis out of the play, and not bother with the puck.... Ross' answer to this strategy was to send the powerful Shore to centre at such times, for Eddie can outwrestle almost any forward in the league.... To offset this play, it seems evident that Maroons, who should know after bitter experience, are right: meet strength with strength.
So finally, some information on Frank Fredrickson's intangibles. It's taken me a while to put this together because I wanted to research the subject thoroughly, so here is what I've got:
Dreakmur started me down this road with a couple of quotes from a book called One Hundred and One Years of Hockey. The quotes follow:
From the caption of a picture of Fredrickson:
"Frank Fredrickson was an accomplished defensive forward who, in a Stanley Cup finals of 1924-25, drew the role of checking the great Morenz. He did, too, and the Victoria Cougars triumphed 3 games to 1."
From the story text (presumably the book is a historical narrative. I dunno, as I don't own it):
"In his great days with the Canadiens, Morenz ws almost impossible to stop. Lester Patrick thought he had the answer in the Stanley Cup final of 1925 when the defending Cup holders went west to engage Lester's Victoria Cougars. Patrick instructed his versatile 29-year-old center, Frank Fredrickson, to hound Morenz every move he made. Fredrickson had long been a star, and eye-catching player with his tall, lean build - an all elbows-and-knees kine of frame - and his long-striding skating style.
Indeed, he did stalk Morenz as the Cougars went to work on the visiting Habitants. They won the opening game 5-2 and the second 3-1, with Morenz and his famout No. 7 jersey rarely able to shake Fredrickson. But in the third game, with the possibility looming of a humiliating sweep, Morenz shook loose from his nemesis and scored a three-goal hat trick. The Canadiens won 4-2 and prolonged the series.
Fredrickson was far too experienced to regard Morenz's outburst as more than a temporary fluke. Back went the blanket in Game 4 as Morenz tired in the 60-minute ordeal. The Cougars won the Stanley Cup with a 6-1 clincher."
Now before anyone jumps on me for dubious source material, I found it highly suspect, myself. The title of the book rather reeks of "feel good history" (as my old professor used to say...in case anyone is wondering, I got my bachelors in history) and it is at any rate a second-hand source with presumably (though I haven't asked Dreak) no specific bibliographical reference. All-in-all, an interesting though not particularly convincing piece of evidence. So I went looking for some first-hand facts to either reinforce or refute it. What I found lies somewhere in-between refutation and reinforcement, and may have ultimately shed some light on the beginnings of the shift system in hockey.