The 1931–32 Toronto Maple Leafs season was Toronto's 15th season in the NHL. The Maple Leafs were coming off their best regular season in team history in 1930–31, and the club set team records in wins and points, with 23 and 53 respectively, finishing in second place in the Canadian Division. Toronto then won three playoff rounds to win the Stanley Cup, first as the Maple Leafs, and third in the history of the franchise.
|1931–32 Toronto Maple Leafs|
Stanley Cup champions
|General manager||Conn Smythe|
|Coach||Art Duncan (0–3–2) |
Conn Smythe (1–0–0)
Dick Irvin (22–15–5)
|Arena||Maple Leaf Gardens|
|Goals||Charlie Conacher (34)|
|Assists||Joe Primeau (37)|
|Points||Busher Jackson (53)|
|Penalty minutes||Red Horner (97)|
|Wins||Lorne Chabot (22)|
|Goals against average||Lorne Chabot (2.36)|
Prior to the season, the NHL announced that the schedule would increase from 44 games to 48. Also, the Maple Leafs announced they were moving from the Arena Gardens, which had been their home since entering the NHL in 1917, to the newly constructed Maple Leaf Gardens.
Toronto started the season off slowly, going win-less in their first five games, which cost head coach Art Duncan his job. He was replaced by former Chicago Black Hawks head coach Dick Irvin. Having to travel from his home in Winnipeg, Irvin joined the club for the December 1 game after Smythe coached the team to their first win of the season against the Boston Bruins. The hiring of Irvin would pay off immediately, as the Leafs got hot and had an 8–3–2 record in his first month behind the bench. The Leafs continued to play good hockey for the remainder of the season, finishing with a team record 23 victories, and tying the club record with 53 points. Toronto finished in second place in the Canadian Division, behind the Montreal Canadiens, and qualified for the playoffs for the second straight season.
The Leafs offense was led by Busher Jackson, who led the NHL with 53 points, scoring 28 goals and added 25 assists in 48 games. Linemate Joe Primeau led the league with 37 assists to finish second to Jackson in league scoring with 50 points. Charlie Conacher posted an NHL high 34 goals, and finished fourth in league scoring with 48 points. Defenceman King Clancy anchored the blueline, scoring 10 goals and 19 points, while Red Horner provided the team toughness, getting a club high 97 penalty minutes. In goal, Lorne Chabot had another very solid season, winning a team high 22 games while posting a 2.36 GAA and earning four shutouts along the way.
Maple Leaf GardensEdit
Overseen by Leafs managing director Conn Smythe, the new Maple Leaf Gardens was built in a six-month period during 1931 at a total cost of $1.5 million. The site was purchased from The T. Eaton Co. Ltd. for a price said to be $150,000 below market value. The building was designed by the architectural firm of Ross and Macdonald. Construction was partly funded through a public offering of 7% preferred shares in a new corporation "Maple Leaf Gardens Limited" at $10 each, with a free common share for each five preferred shares purchased. Smythe and the Toronto Maple Leaf Hockey Club Ltd. transferred ownership of the hockey team to the new corporation in return for shares.
The contract to construct the building was awarded to Thomson Brothers Construction of Port Credit in Toronto Township. Thomson Bros bid just under $990,000 for the project, the lowest of ten tenders received, mainly due to the fact that amongst the Thomson Brothers' various enterprises they had much of the sub contract work covered, others could not compete in this manner. That price did not include steel work, which was estimated at an additional $100,000. Construction began at midnight on June 1, 1931. In what is to this day considered to be an outstanding accomplishment, the Gardens was built in under five months and two weeks.
The Gardens opened on November 12, 1931, with the Maple Leafs losing 2–1 to the Chicago Black Hawks. Reported attendance on opening night was 13,542. The Leafs would go on to win their first Stanley Cup (third of the Toronto franchise) that season.
|Toronto Maple Leafs||48||23||18||7||155||127||53|
|New York Americans||48||16||24||8||95||142||40|
Note: W = Wins, L = Losses, T = Ties, GF = Goals For, GA = Goals Against, Pts = Points
Teams that qualified for the playoffs are highlighted in bold.
Record vs. opponentsEdit
|1931-32 NHL Records|
The Maple Leafs would open the playoffs against the Chicago Black Hawks in a two-game, total goal series. The Black Hawks had a record of 18–19–11, earning 47 points, and finished in second place in the American Division. The Leafs dropped the opening game by a close 1–0 score at Chicago Stadium, however, they returned home for the second game, and Toronto easily defeated the Black Hawks 6–1, and won the total goal series by a score of 6–2, advancing to the second round of the playoffs.
Toronto's next opponent was the Montreal Maroons in another two game, total goal series. The Maroons finished behind Toronto in the Canadian Division, as they finished with a 19–22–7 record, registering 43 points. The Maroons defeated the Detroit Falcons in the opening round of the playoffs. The series opened at the Montreal Forum, and the game ended in a 1–1 tie. The second game was played at Maple Leaf Gardens, and Toronto used home ice to their advantage, defeating the Maroons 3–2 in overtime to win the series 4–3, and move to the Stanley Cup finals.
The Leafs would play the New York Rangers in a best of 5 series to determine the winner of the 1932 Stanley Cup Finals. The Rangers finished in first place in the American Division with a 23–17–8 record, earning 54 points. They had defeated the Montreal Canadiens in four games to advance to the finals. The series opened at Madison Square Garden in New York, however, it was the Leafs who struck first, defeating the Rangers 6–4. The second game of the series was moved from New York to the Boston Garden due to the circus having been booked for the Rangers home arena. Toronto took full advantage of this, and easily defeated the Rangers 6–2 to come within a victory of the Stanley Cup. The series moved to Toronto for the third game, and Toronto completed the sweep, defeating New York 6–4, and winning their third Stanley Cup in team history, and first since 1922, when they were still named the Toronto St. Pats. The "Kid Line" of Jackson, Conacher, and Primeau combined for 8 goals in the 3 games.
Schedule and resultsEdit
|1||November 12||Chicago Black Hawks||2–1||Toronto Maple Leafs||0–1–0||0|
|2||November 14||Montreal Canadiens||1–1||Toronto Maple Leafs||0–1–1||1|
|3||November 18||Toronto Maple Leafs||1–1||Chicago Black Hawks||0–1–2||2|
|4||November 21||New York Rangers||5–3||Toronto Maple Leafs||0–2–2||2|
|5||November 26||Toronto Maple Leafs||2–3||Montreal Canadiens||0–3–2||2|
|6||November 28||Boston Bruins||5–6||Toronto Maple Leafs||1–3–2||4|
|7||December 1||New York Americans||2–2||Toronto Maple Leafs||1–3–3||5|
|8||December 3||Toronto Maple Leafs||2–8||Montreal Maroons||1–4–3||5|
|9||December 5||Montreal Maroons||0–4||Toronto Maple Leafs||2–4–3||7|
|10||December 8||Toronto Maple Leafs||4–2||New York Rangers||3–4–3||9|
|11||December 12||Detroit Falcons||1–3||Toronto Maple Leafs||4–4–3||11|
|12||December 15||Toronto Maple Leafs||2–2||New York Americans||4–4–4||12|
|13||December 19||Montreal Maroons||2–4||Toronto Maple Leafs||5–4–4||14|
|14||December 20||Toronto Maple Leafs||0–1||Chicago Black Hawks||5–5–4||14|
|15||December 22||New York Americans||3–9||Toronto Maple Leafs||6–5–4||16|
|16||December 24||Toronto Maple Leafs||2–1||Montreal Canadiens||7–5–4||18|
|17||December 26||Montreal Canadiens||2–0||Toronto Maple Leafs||7–6–4||18|
|18||December 29||Toronto Maple Leafs||5–0||New York Americans||8–6–4||20|
|19||December 31||Montreal Maroons||1–3||Toronto Maple Leafs||9–6–4||22|
|20||January 3||Toronto Maple Leafs||2–3||Detroit Falcons||9–7–4||22|
|21||January 5||Toronto Maple Leafs||3–3||Boston Bruins||9–7–5||23|
|22||January 10||Toronto Maple Leafs||0–2||New York Rangers||9–8–5||23|
|23||January 12||Detroit Falcons||4–7||Toronto Maple Leafs||10–8–5||25|
|24||January 14||Toronto Maple Leafs||6–4||Montreal Maroons||11–8–5||27|
|25||January 17||Toronto Maple Leafs||0–4||New York Americans||11–9–5||27|
|26||January 19||New York Americans||3–11||Toronto Maple Leafs||12–9–5||29|
|27||January 21||Toronto Maple Leafs||1–3||Montreal Canadiens||12–10–5||29|
|28||January 23||Montreal Canadiens||0–2||Toronto Maple Leafs||13–10–5||31|
|29||January 30||New York Rangers||3–6||Toronto Maple Leafs||14–10–5||33|
|30||February 3||Toronto Maple Leafs||0–7||Chicago Black Hawks||14–11–5||33|
|31||February 6||Boston Bruins||0–6||Toronto Maple Leafs||15–11–5||35|
|32||February 7||Toronto Maple Leafs||1–3||Detroit Falcons||15–12–5||35|
|33||February 13||Montreal Maroons||0–6||Toronto Maple Leafs||16–12–5||37|
|34||February 16||Toronto Maple Leafs||0–3||Boston Bruins||16–13–5||37|
|35||February 18||New York Rangers||3–5||Toronto Maple Leafs||17–13–5||39|
|36||February 20||Toronto Maple Leafs||0–3||Montreal Maroons||17–14–5||39|
|37||February 23||Toronto Maple Leafs||4–4||New York Americans||17–14–6||40|
|38||February 25||Detroit Falcons||5–3||Toronto Maple Leafs||17–15–6||40|
|39||February 27||Chicago Black Hawks||2–4||Toronto Maple Leafs||18–15–6||42|
|40||March 1||New York Americans||1–3||Toronto Maple Leafs||19–15–6||44|
|41||March 5||Montreal Canadiens||1–1||Toronto Maple Leafs||19–15–7||45|
|42||March 10||Toronto Maple Leafs||1–3||Montreal Maroons||19–16–7||45|
|43||March 12||Boston Bruins||3–5||Toronto Maple Leafs||20–16–7||47|
|44||March 15||Toronto Maple Leafs||2–6||Boston Bruins||20–17–7||47|
|45||March 17||Toronto Maple Leafs||6–3||New York Rangers||21–17–7||49|
|46||March 19||Chicago Black Hawks||3–11||Toronto Maple Leafs||22–17–7||51|
|47||March 20||Toronto Maple Leafs||3–2||Detroit Falcons||23–17–7||53|
|48||March 22||Toronto Maple Leafs||2–4||Montreal Canadiens||23–18–7||53|
- Toronto Maple Leafs 6, Chicago Black Hawks 2
|1||March 27||Toronto Maple Leafs||0–1||Chicago Black Hawks||0–1|
|2||March 29||Chicago Black Hawks||1–6||Toronto Maple Leafs||1–1|
- Toronto Maple Leafs 4, Montreal Maroons 3
|1||March 31||Toronto Maple Leafs||1–1||Montreal Maroons||0–0–1|
|2||April 2||Montreal Maroons||2–3||Toronto Maple Leafs||1–0–1|
- Toronto Maple Leafs 3, New York Rangers 0
|1||April 5||Toronto Maple Leafs||6–4||New York Rangers||1–0|
|2||April 7||Toronto Maple Leafs||6–2||New York Rangers||2–0|
|3||April 9||New York Rangers||4–6||Toronto Maple Leafs||3–0|
- Game 2 played in Boston
- Pos = Position; GPI = Games played in; G = Goals; A = Assists; Pts = Points; PIM = Penalty minutes; +/- = Plus/minus; PPG = Power-play goals; SHG = Short-handed goals; GWG = Game-winning goals
- Min, TOI = Minutes played; W = Wins; L = Losses; T,T/OT = Ties; OTL = Overtime losses; GA = Goals-against; GAA = Goals-against average; SO = Shutouts; SA = Shots against; SV = Shots saved; SV% = Save percentage;
Awards and recordsEdit
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- June 8, 1931: Claimed Harold Darragh off Waivers from the Boston Bruins
- September 26, 1931: Claimed Frank Finnigan and Syd Howe in the Dispersal Draft from the Ottawa Senators for 1931–32 season
- February 8, 1932: Acquired Earl Miller from the Chicago Black Hawks for cash
- February 14, 1932: Signed Free Agent Fred Robertson
- Rodden, M. J. (November 30, 1931). "On The Highways of Sport: The Maple Leafs Finally Chase The Jinx". The Globe. p. 6.
- Maple Leaf Gardens, Limited – Prospectus, summary published in The Globe, March 5, 1931
- "Maple Leaf Gardens contract goes to local firm," The Globe, May 30, 1931
- "New arena work to start on Sunday at midnight," Toronto Star, May 30, 1931
- Rodden, Mike (November 13, 1931). "Over thirteen thousand attend opening game". The Globe.
- Standings: NHL Public Relations Department (2008). Dave McCarthy; et al. (eds.). THE NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE Official Guide & Record Book/2009. National Hockey League. p. 147. ISBN 978-1-894801-14-0.
- "1931-32 Toronto Maple Leafs Statistics - Hockey-Reference.com". hockey-reference.com. Retrieved 2009-06-11.