On this day in 1931, our Maple Leafs acquired Frank Finnigan in the NHL’s Dispersal Draft. Until that time, Finnigan had played eight seasons with the Ottawa Senators, seasons which included a Cup win in 1927. Following the Great Depression, most teams were in state of financial crisis and that was exactly what lead the Ottawa Senators to withdraw from playing in the 1931-32 season. Of course, we now know that the Sens didnâ€™t make their return until a much later time.
Francis Arthur Clarence Finnigan was nicknamed “The Shawville Express”. The nickname started when he was playing for the University of Ottawa, as he had to take the train from Shawville to Ottawa to study and play for the University. He played two more seasons for teams in the OCHL, with Ottawa Collegiate and Ottawa Montagnards before joining the Ottawa Senators in the 1923â€“24 season.
Finnigan helped the Leafs to win a Cup in his first season in Toronto, contributing 5 points in 7 playoff games. He returned to the Senators the following season but finished his NHL career with the Leafs between 1935-1937. In total, Frank Finnigan played 154 regular season games as a Leaf, netting 14 goals and 26 assists. His jersey number 8 was retired by the present day Ottawa Senators.Â The Express also played in the first ever (unofficial) NHL All-Star Game (1934), held as a benefit for Toronto player Ace Bailey. The first official NHL All-Star Game was held in 1947.
In 1937, Finnigan retired from the NHL. He returned to Ottawa and played ice hockey for various amateur teams, including the Ottawa RCAF Flyers while he was in the Air Force. Finnigan suffered a heart attack on December 18, 1991 and he died on Christmas Day in 1991 in Shawville Hospital. Until that time, he was the last surviving member of the 1927 Stanley Cup winning Ottawa Senators.
hockey-nerd.com wants to save Hockey Night in Canada from Glen(n) Healy – now, to each his own, that’s why I’m linking this, but personally, I don’t think inciting a public outcry is the way to go. Healy might be a pain to us Leaf fans, but I certainly don’tÂ believeÂ the guy brings any intentional malice to hisÂ commentating, even if it can appear that way. Plus, the best way to shut Healy up is for the team to play better hockey. See how his “How many chances are they going to give this kid” becomes “This kid is really talented” then. Â But, like I said, I’m linking it, and to each his own.
On aÂ similarÂ note: All I want for Christmas is Bob Cole, by hopeinthebigsmoke.ca