Remembering Game 7 of the 1979 Stanley Cup Semifinals; Boston Bruins at Montreal Canadiens
May 10 was the 40th anniversary of one of hockey’s great games that is still very felt in this year’s NHL playoffs.
The Carolina-Boston National Hockey League Eastern Conference Finals could be called the “Don Cherry Series,” due to the fact the team Cherry most notably coached, the Bruins, are playing the team called the “Bunch of Jerks” by the star of CBC’s Hockey Night in Canada.
If you’re not aware, the Hurricanes are known for their extravagant post-game celebrations after victories, hence it has caught the ire of a hockey old timer like Cherry who still champions aggressive hockey, which was the code of Game One last night.
But since Cherry has given spice to Eastern Conference Finals, it should be mentioned 40 years ago today he became a hockey legend not for a victory, but a loss.
May 10, 1979. Game Seven of the semifinals between Boston and Montreal. The Bruins had lost 13 straight playoff series to the Habs dating back to 1945.
While Montreal and Toronto would figure to be THE hockey rivalry to the lay person, for reasons dating from French vs. English to Roch Carrier’s The Hockey Sweater, to many it’s Boston and Montreal.
Two of the most notable moments in Ole Tyme Hockey History were products of Boston playing Montreal; Eddie Shore’s 60-minute effort in Montreal without sleep after driving through a snowstorm through the night from Boston with no windshield and a face torn apart by the cold weather to score the only goal of the game; and the famous Maurice Richard-Hal Laycoe high sticking incident that led to a Richard suspension and ensuing riot in Montreal- said to be the birth of the Quebec independence movement.
Throw in the language barrier and two different countries. Throw in the losing streak to the Habs in the playoffs, the fact Cherry would shadow the Canadians’ best player, Guy LaFleur, who had been slashed repeatedly in the face in the previous season’s Stanley Cup Final between the two teams. Consider the game was played nine years to the day Bobby Orr’s flying goal against the team Montreal head coach Scotty Bowman coached then, St. Louis, giving Boston their first Stanley Cup in 29 years; and…