“When we’re skating and shooting the way we can, it doesn’t matter whether they put bulldozers out there against us. We’ll just go around them.”
That was Montreal captain Henri Richard on another Monday, in another playoffs, as his Canadiens skated at the Forum ahead of a Stanley Cup semi-final against the Philadelphia Flyers to start the week of April 16, 1973. That’s Richard laid out third from the bottom in this team stretch, I think. Alternate captain Yvan Cournoyer is nearest the camera, with Steve Shutt next in line. Goaltender Ken Dryden is sprawled to the right of the night, beside (possibly) Guy Lapointe and one of the back-ups, Michel Plasse or Wayne Thomas.
“We’ve been too tight so far,” Richard told reporters that day. “We have to loosen up to get going at our best.” Two nights earlier on this same Forum ice, the Canadiens had lost the first game of the series, 5-4 in overtime, with Rick MacLeish scoring the decisive goal for Philadelphia. The day after this practice, on Tuesday, April 17, Larry Robinson scored Montreal’s winner in a 4-3 OT win that tied the series.
Montreal would go on to dismiss the Flyers in five games. In the finals that followed that year, Montreal dispensed with the Chicago Black Hawks in six games to claim their 18th Stanley Cup.
(Image: Fonds La Presse, BAnQ Vieux-Montréal)