Mar 24, 2010

From the history vaults: 1934 pre-game ceremony for King Clancy

Should have posted this last week, closer to St. Patrick's Day.... has a great look back at a March 17, 1934 pre-game ceremony that the Toronto Maple Leafs held to honour King Clancy. He was presented with a green wool sweater with a shamrock on the back.
While the rest of the Leafs wore their familiar blue, King Clancy wore this very special outfit for the first period. In the second and third Clancy had to return to his normal jersey as Lester Patrick, coach of the opposing New York Rangers, complained about the alternate jersey on the ice...

The Leafs were hosting "King Clancy Night." Clancy was as big a star as Toronto has ever seen. They honored him with the night, the jersey, and a number of stereotypical gifts that would keep any Irish eyes smiling.

Several junior players stepped on to the ice through large potato props. Red Horner emerged from a boxing glove. New York Ranger's star Bill Cook hid in a shamrock. All the while the Knights of Columbus Minstrel Band played Irish music.

But the highlight of the night was when Clancy was introduced to the sold out arena. There has never been anything quite like it in sports before or since.

Here's Clancy's own memories of the event:

When my turn finally came, the lights were all turned out and, dressed in royal robes and wearing a crown, I was ushered in on a big throne pulled by Hap Day. As the float reached the middle of the rink, I got hit in the face with a handful of soot from (Hap) Day and (Charlie) Conacher. When the lights came on, I looked like Santa Claus but my face was pitch black. It took me two or three days to get that stuff off."

Read the entire article (with photos)...

(via Kukla's Korner)

No comments: