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Inside the Palace: A history of Maple Leaf Gardens

The Story

It might be getting too old and too small for professional hockey, but for Canadian hockey fans, Maple Leaf Gardens is a place of pilgrimage. Since 1931 the home of the Toronto Maple Leafs has hoisted 11 Stanley Cup banners and been a second home to players, staff and owners, including the recently deceased (and much despised) Harold Ballard. In this documentary for The Journal, reporter Allen Abel looks back at almost 60 years of history at the Gardens.   

Medium: Television
Broadcast Date: Sept. 19, 1990
Program: The Journal
Host: Barbara Frum
Reporter: Allen Abel
Guests: Bobby Baun, Johnny Bower, Barbara McCabe, Bill Ballard, Donald Giffin
Duration: 15:55

Did You know?

• Maple Leaf Gardens closed eight years after this broadcast, with the Leafs playing their final game in February 1999. The team then moved to the Air Canada Centre, a new arena with about 3,000 more seats and 115 luxury boxes.

• The move out of the Gardens was proof of how Toronto hockey fans had changed since the building went up almost 70 years earlier. According to the book Hockey: A People's History, Leafs coach Pat Quinn was asked whether he was concerned about losing blue-collar fans. "We've already lost the blue-collar fan," he replied. "I'm worried about the white-collar fan."


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