1909-10 NHA Season - Regular Season

Regular Season

The first Canadiens game ever took place on January 5 under a cloud. Didier Pitre had signed a contract with both the Canadiens and the Nationals. Pitre was risking a $2,000 fine and 60 days's jail time. The Nationals had a legal injunction against Pitre playing for the Canadiens. This contributed to an over-capacity crowd at the Jubilee Rink of about 5,000. Pitre did play (he was guaranteed any fines by Canadiens' management) and court action commenced. Pitre was found to not to have a binding contract with the Nationals by the courts. By this time, the CHA had folded, and no contract was enforceable. Pitre would have a long career with the Canadiens, playing into the 1920s.

On January 15, a meeting was held by the league executive and Ottawa and Montreal Shamrocks were admitted to the NHA. The games played before that date were thrown out, and games from that date forwards counted towards the final standings.

On January 22, at a game between Renfrew and Shamrocks, Shamrock's Joe Hall was ejected for striking the judge-of-play Rod Kennedy. After regulation time, the game was tied. Referee Tom Hodge proposed that Hall return for the overtime, but Renfrew objected and did not play the overtime. Hall was later fined $100 for the incident and suspended until January 30. The game was ordered replayed but wasn't due to ice conditions and the game results were accepted as a tie.

On Cyclone Taylor's first return to Ottawa as a member of the Renfrew team, he made his famous promise to score a goal backwards against Ottawa. This led to incredible interest, with over 7000 in attendance. A bet of $100 was placed at the King Edward Hotel against him scoring at all. The Senators would win 8–5 (3 goals in overtime) and more importantly keep Taylor off the scoresheet. Later in the season at the return match in Renfrew, Taylor made good on his boast with a goal scored backwards. This was the final game of the season, and the Senators had no chance at the league title, and don't appear to have put in an effort, losing 17–2.

Read more about this topic:  1909-10 NHA Season

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