Sunday, March 26, 2017

A Century Later For The Stanley Cup

It was 100 years ago, on March 26, 1917, that the Seattle Metropolitans won the Stanley Cup over the Montreal Canadiens in sold out Seattle Arena in front of 3,500 fans becoming the first American hockey team to win the championship.

Prior to the first game Canadiens coach George Kennedy said I do not expect my men to have their feet tonight. Seattle may win tonight, but after that, I shall be greatly surprised if my men do not make a clean sweep of it.” In turns out he was correct but had the teams backwards, the Canadiens won the first game but Seattle then swept the next 3 games to win the Stanley Cup Finals 3-1.

The Metropolitans made it to the Stanly Cup Finals three times in 1916-17, 1918-19 and 1919-20, winning in 1916-17 and tying in 1918-19 with the Montreal Canadians. The Stanley Cup in 1918-19 was suspended with Seattle and Montreal tied 2-2-1 due to the Spanish Flu outbreak.

That 1916-17 team included three future Hockey Hall of Famers; Frank Foyston, Hap Holmes and Jack Walker in addition to Jim Riley (the only athlete to play in the NHL and MLB) and believe it or not there are a couple of cards depicting Seattle players though they came out many years later. In 1983, and then again in 1987, Cartophilium released a set of Hall of Fame cards and these sets included both Foyston and Walker in Seattle jersey. There are cards dating back to the tobacco era that include players who at one time had played in Seattle but none of them depict the player in the Metropolitans jersey.

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