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Mully: Recognize any of these names from hockey stats of yore?

After winning the league championship, the Timmins Majors are off to the provincials

A huge congratulations to the Timmins Majors on their 2024 Greater North U18 AAA Hockey League championship. The club is full marks for a hard-fought and extremely tight series of games and overall victory.

A crowd was at the Mac to meet the team as they arrived home from from winning the league title. 

And now the real fun begins. Not many players and coaches get a chance to play in an all-Ontario championship. It is an experience one never forgets. I was lucky enough to go to back-to-back OHF AAA Championships in the ‘80s and it still feels like only yesterday. 

With a tournament format teams can't afford a bad game or two. But on the other hand, a team on a hot streak can reel off a string of wins over seven days and grab a championship while doing so. It happens all the time.

I know the Majors will be prepared and ready to face anything that gets thrown their way at the championships.

The OHF's run is from April 8 to 14 in the Soo. All the teams competing there are not decided yet but here is the Majors schedule at the event:

  • Day one - vs Greater Toronto Hockey League 
  • Day two - vs Minor Hockey Alliance of Ontario
  • Day three - vs Ontario Minor Hockey
  • Day four - vs Sault Jr. Greyhounds (Host)
  • Day five - vs Hockey Eastern Ontario
  • Day six will see the first-place team play the fourth-place team in one semi-final, while second and third battle in the other.Day seven will feature the bronze medal game followed by the gold medal game.

A strong focus and even stronger play could find Timmins looking for a medal on day seven.

Let's hope it happens.

Speaking of playoffs, it is really getting close to crunch time when it comes to the NHL.

The top spots in the Atlantic and Metropolitan (Boston, Florida, Carolina, Rangers) are pretty solid and if Toronto can keep it up they should be able to hold off the surging Lightning who are suddenly only four points back of the Leafs. The last wildcard is pretty much Detroit, Washington and the Islanders, with Philly maybe falling back to a wildcard. I still can't believe that Philly (-8), Washington (-27) and the Isles (-27) are potential playoff teams who are currently minus teams.

Out west, barring some collapses, it should be Jet's, Av's, Stars, Canucks, in good shape and Nashville with one wildcard and Vegas, Oilers and Kings fighting for second, third or a wildcard. Edmonton has started to make me nervous with their goaltending. Hopefully, it's back on track real soon.

I pulled out some old clippings that my mother had in some scrapbooks for some friends to look at where they are mentioned or pictured.

That was kind of cool, but this was even cooler. Every couple of weeks or so they ran a local standings page in the paper. And it was huge. 

Over 50 teams were listed and that does not include standings and top scorers from the men's rec and oldtimers' leagues.

Here is a sample of a blast from the past.

Porcupine Juvenile Hockey League

Columbians   10 GP       15 Pts
Kinsmen         9              14
Gold Kings     11             14
Schu. Bears   11             10
Abitibi             11             7
Flyers             8               0

Top 10 Scorers

K. Osmars
J. Price
D. Greatti
V. Houde
D. Hway
M. Pontello
Y. Tambeau
C. Foy

Midget League

Moose            10 GP       16 Pts
Legion 287     9               14
Legion 88       11              14
Porkies           9                9
Columbians    9                9
Flyers             10              4
Schum. Cubs 10              2

Top 10 Scorers

C. Bois
C. Andrews
M. Mulryan
A. Beaudoin
M. Polowy
M. Kingsbury
M. Cheechoo
E. Hamilton
F. Charette

This continued like this through bantam, pee wee and atom. Games played/wins/losses/ties — the whole deal.

Now I know times have changed and print media of any kind is not staffed or equipped to probably ever do this again. But in this so-called modern age would it not be cool to see something like that in some format? Yes, a lot of leagues have websites and such, but a comprehensive format combining all local hockey leagues would be super for a lot of kids.

A few years ago someone approached me about a monthly newspaper-type format that would have all that info plus game scores and stories etc, but they never got it off the ground. I think it would be so cool if once a month you could have a mini paper that would be in all the arenas and league offices. It is something all kids should be able to experience. Or I guess even a local website.

And you know what? I am going to get calls and emails saying how cool it was to see someone's name from 40-plus years ago in this week's Mully's. 

Maybe some ambitious young people will attempt to do something like this.

Nah!  We will just have to keep pulling out any old scrapbook articles we might have to show kids how good we had it. You know before that darn internettie thingy.

A lot of happy gearheads this past weekend as we finally got to see something other than a Red Bull parade in Formula 1. That Ferrari 1-2 was something Formula 1 fans have been craving for a long time. Even if it did require a jammed brake caliper.

Blessed and Happy Easter to all of you.

Later Skater

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