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The Blackhawks' 1938 Stanley Cup: The Unlikeliest Of Titles

Dave Seminara writes in the Tribune about the last cup clinched in Chicago.

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Some “highlights”:

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  • The ’38 Hawks were the worst team in the playoffs, at 14-25-9, and backed in on a three-game losing streak.
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  • The president of the NHL refused to send the cup to Chicago from Toronto even when it was possible for the Hawks to beat the Maple Leafs and win it there.
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  • The Hawks had an injured goalie and a backup who wasn’t even in town, so they finally got permission to use Alfie Moore, a Toronto minor league goalie.
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Which leads me to my favorite part of Seminara’s article:

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But time was short, and Hawks left winger Johnny Gottselig, who knew Moore, found him at a tavern, already several drinks for the worse.

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“He’d had about 10 or a dozen drinks,” Gottselig said, recalling the incident years later in an interview with John Devaney, author of “The Stanley Cup.” “We put some coffee into him and put him under the shower. By game time, he was in pretty good shape.”

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The Hawks stunned the Leafs 3-1 and even won over Leafs fans, who gave Moore a standing ovation as he was carried off the ice by his teammates.

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It was a different time.