Montreal’s Canadiens, to begin, were losers. The first season they played, through the winter of 1910, they sank to the bottom of the seven-team NHA. The team was better in year two, finishing second to the eventual Stanley Cup winners from the Ottawa Hockey Club. Georges Vézina was in his first season with Montreal that year, and he had Didier Pitre, Jack Laviolette, and James Power skating in front of him, along with the great and (as seen below) easy-to-vex Newsy Lalonde. Adolphe Lecours was Montreal’s amplified coach that year, which finished in early March, on the road, with a 5-0 defeat at Ottawa’s Arena. Cue The Ottawa Citizen’s account from the morning after:
One of the features of the match was the frantic coaching by the Canadien management. From beginning to end a battery of megaphones worked overtime in [sic] the French-Canadians. Manager Lecours excitedly urging the visitors to “put it over them.” At one stage Lecours jumped to his feet and turned the megaphone at Power and Laviolette. “Here, you fellows,” he shouted hotly. “What the —’s the matter? Why don’t you use your body.” Secretary Martin Rosenthal then threatened to have the Canadien manager ejected if he did not modify his language and thereafter he was milder, continually pleading with Lalonde to “pass the puck,” and with Pitre to “break the hoodoo.” Billy Noseworthy also rained advice at the visitors, while Pete Green and Bruce Stuart attended to the Ottawa coaching. Every time Lalonde grabbed the puck Green would shout. “Get him Marty; go to him Albert; get his body; he won’t pass it.” And Green’s tip proved the correct one for Lalonde invariably retained the rubber until the Ottawa forward robbed him of it when Newsy would slap his stick on the ice in disgust.