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1971 Stanley Cup Finals

1971 ice hockey championship series

Top 3 1971 Stanley Cup Finals related articles

1971 Stanley Cup Finals
1234567 Total
Montreal Canadiens 1*345043 4
Chicago Black Hawks 2*522232 3
* indicates periods of overtime
Location(s)Chicago: Chicago Stadium (1, 2, 5, 7)
Montreal: Montreal Forum (3, 4, 6)
CoachesMontreal: Al MacNeil
Chicago: Bill Reay
CaptainsMontreal: Jean Beliveau
Chicago: Vacant
DatesMay 4 – May 18
MVPKen Dryden (Canadiens)
Series-winning goalHenri Richard (2:34, third, G7)

The 1971 Stanley Cup Finals was the championship series of the National Hockey League's (NHL) 1970–71 season, and the culmination of the 1971 Stanley Cup playoffs. It was contested between the Chicago Black Hawks and the Montreal Canadiens. The Black Hawks made their first appearance in the finals since 1965, while the Canadiens had last played in and won the finals in 1969. The Canadiens won the series, four games to three.

1971 Stanley Cup Finals Intro articles: 5

Paths to the Finals

The playoff system changed this year to allow cross-over between the divisions during the playoffs.

Chicago defeated the Philadelphia Flyers 4–0 and the New York Rangers 4–3 to advance to the final.

Montreal defeated the defending champion Boston Bruins 4–3 and the Minnesota North Stars 4–2. This set up the first "Original Six" finals since the 1967 final.

1971 Stanley Cup Finals Paths to the Finals articles: 5

Game summaries

Brothers Frank and Peter Mahovlich starred for the Canadiens, scoring nine goals in the seven-game final series. Ken Dryden debuted for the Canadiens, while this was Jean Beliveau's last Final appearance. He ended his career with ten championships. This would be only the second time that the road team would win a game seven in Finals history. The only previous time it happened was when the Toronto Maple Leafs defeated the Detroit Red Wings 2–1 in game seven in the 1945 Stanley Cup Finals in Detroit. Montreal also won the series despite losing the first two games on the road; neither of these feats would happen again until 2009, when the Pittsburgh Penguins defeated the Red Wings in game seven by the same 2–1 score after losing the first two games to the Red Wings. The next seven-game Stanley Cup Finals would not occur until the 1987 Stanley Cup Finals with the Edmonton Oilers and the Philadelphia Flyers.

Date Visitors Score Home Score Notes
May 4 Montreal 1 Chicago 2 OT
May 6 Montreal 3 Chicago 5
May 9 Chicago 2 Montreal 4
May 11 Chicago 2 Montreal 5
May 13 Montreal 0 Chicago 2
May 16 Chicago 3 Montreal 4
May 18 Montreal 3 Chicago 2

Montreal wins the series 4–3.

Game one

May 4Montreal Canadiens1–2 OT
(0–0, 1–0, 0–0, 0–1)
Chicago Black HawksChicago Stadium
Attendance: 16,666

Game two

May 6Montreal Canadiens3–5
(2–1, 0–2, 1–2)
Chicago Black HawksChicago Stadium
Attendance: 16,666

Game three

May 9Chicago Black Hawks2–4
(2–0, 0–2, 0–2)
Montreal CanadiensMontreal Forum
Attendance: 17,441

Game four

May 11Chicago Black Hawks2–5
(1–3, 1–2, 0–0)
Montreal CanadiensMontreal Forum
Attendance: 17,678

Game five

May 13Montreal Canadiens0–2
(0–1, 0–1, 0–0)
Chicago Black HawksChicago Stadium
Attendance: 16,666

Game six

May 16Chicago Black Hawks3–4
(1–1, 2–1, 0–2)
Montreal CanadiensMontreal Forum
Attendance: 17,817

Game seven

May 18Montreal Canadiens3–2
(0–1, 2–1, 1–0)
Chicago Black HawksChicago Stadium
Attendance: 21,000

1971 Stanley Cup Finals Game summaries articles: 39

Coaching controversies

Both clubs would suffer public controversies regarding coaching performances, specifically accusations of mishandling star players during the series.

Chicago head coach Billy Reay would be attacked in the media by Hawks star forward Bobby Hull for his excessive employment of two little used forwards, Lou Angotti and Eric Nesterenko, as well as the injured defenseman Keith Magnuson in game seven. With a 2–0 Blackhawks lead, both Hull and Hawks star center Stan Mikita were left on the bench for extended periods in favor of Angotti and Nesterenko, including two four-on-four situations. The wide open matchup should have favored the frustrated Hull, who had been successfully shadowed in the series by Canadiens rookie Rejean Houle. The first two Canadien goals were tallied with the two backliners on the ice and the hobbled Magnuson was beaten one on one by speedy Montreal center Henri Richard for the ultimate game winner.

The Canadiens suffered their own coaching controversy earlier in the series when head coach Al MacNeil benched alternate captain Henri Richard in game five. Following the 2-0 loss, Richard ripped MacNeil in the media calling him incompetent and "the worst coach I ever played for." Accusation of favoring English-speaking players plagued MacNeil and turned the public against him. Following death threats, MacNeil and his family were assigned body guards for the final home game in Montreal. Even the eventual series victory wouldn't be enough to save MacNeil's job. He was replaced as head coach by Scotty Bowman soon after the finals.

1971 Stanley Cup Finals Coaching controversies articles: 6

Stanley Cup engraving

The 1971 Stanley Cup was presented to Canadiens captain Jean Beliveau by NHL President Clarence Campbell following the Canadiens 3–2 win over the Black Hawks in game seven.

The following Canadiens players and staff had their names engraved on the Stanley Cup

1971 Montreal Canadiens


  • †Serge Savard played 37 regular season games, but missed the rest of season injured. †Phil Myre played 30 games, dressed for 70 games, but was not dressed in the playoffs. Both players were included in the team picture. They were not engraved on the Stanley Cup, because they did not play in the playoffs.
  • #8 Larry Pleau was included on the team, but did not qualify. He played only 19 regular season games played, and did not dress in the playoffs. so his name was not included on the Stanley Cup. He would get his name on the Stanley Cup as an Asst. Manager with New York Rangers in 1994.

Coaching and administrative staff

  • J. David Molson (President/Owner), William Molson (Vice President/Owner)
  • Peter Molson (Vice Presidents/Owners), Sam Pollock (Vice President/General Manager)
  • Ron Caron (Asst. General Manager), Al MacNeil (Head Coach)
  • Yvon Belanger (Trainer)
  • Phil Langlois (Asst. Trainer), Eddy Palchak (Asst Trainer)

Stanley Cup engraving

  • Al MacNeil (coach) was engraved on the Stanley Cup as .COACH. MAC NEIL missing his first name "Al". MacNeil was spelled AL MACNEIL COACH on the Replica Cup. MacNeil became the first rookie coach to win the Stanley Cup as a mid-season replacement. MacNeil replaced Claude Ruel after 23 games. MacNeil was also the 11th NHL Rookie Coach to win the Stanley Cup. MacNeil only coached the last 55 regular season games for Montreal.
  • Phil Roberto was misspelled P ROBRTO missing an "E". Roberto's name was corrected to P. ROBERTO on the Replica Cup created during the 1992–93 season.

1971 Stanley Cup Finals Stanley Cup engraving articles: 23

See also



  • Diamond, Dan, ed. (2000). Total Stanley Cup. NHL.
  • Podnieks, Andrew; Hockey Hall of Fame (2004). Lord Stanley's Cup. Triumph Books. ISBN 978-1-55168-261-7.
Preceded by
Boston Bruins
Montreal Canadiens
Stanley Cup champions

Succeeded by
Boston Bruins