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The Vintage Leaf Memories Podcast - Episode 4

With the Winter Classic hours away, I was naturally drawn to looking back at some fond Leaf memories in Episode 4 of the Vintage Leaf Memories podcast.

This segment is a look back at how teams in the olden days (in my case, those olden days relate to the late ‘50s and early ‘60s) relied almost exclusively on four defensemen to carry the mail, as it were. Today, of course, it is standard for NHL teams to play six defensemen a night (sometimes even a seventh guy...)

Yet the Leafs inevitably relied on a fey “fifth man” on the blueline during their Punch Imlach-led Cup hey-day in the 1960s.

On this program, I harken back to some wonderful old names who played a significant, if sometimes under-appreciated, role in the team’s championship success. (That's one of those "fifth defensemen", Kent Douglas, above in playoff action in the spring of 1963 against Red Wing star Gordie Howe.  Johnny Bower is in goal...)

It's not "current" Leaf talk, but I hope you enjoy the program.


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  1. Long suffering Leaf fanJanuary 3, 2014 at 9:01 AM

    Hey, Mike all the best for the New Year! Here is a Leaf/ Wing memory for you January 2 1971...Leafs 13 Wings 0

    1. Good to hear from you, Long suffering. Yes, I recall that game very well. The Wings were struggling that season (after a good year in 1969-'70) and the Leafs had that good young defense corps with veterans like Ullman, Ellis and Keon and kids like Sittler and Brian Spencer. Great memories!