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Wednesday, November 19, 2003
Leafs are first to win three straight Cups
By Larry Schwartz
Special to ESPN.com
April 16, 1949
The Toronto Maple Leafs are the dominant team of the '40s, and tonight they make history. They become the first NHL team to win three consecutive Stanley Cups with their 3-1 victory over the Detroit Red Wings, completing their four-game sweep in the finals.
The Maple Leafs finished fourth in the six-team league during the regular season with a 22-25-13 record. Their 57 points were 18 less than the first-place Red Wings (34-19-7) accumulated. But after beating the second-place Boston Bruins in five games in the semifinals, the Leafs dominate the finals, with goalie Turk Broda allowing Detroit just five goals in four games.
The Red Wings' final goal, by Ted Lindsay with Gordie Howe assisting, gives Detroit an early 1-0 lead. Toronto's Ray Timgren ties the game midway through the second period and Cal Gardner makes it 2-1 before the period ends. Ray Bentley's goal late in the third period is the clincher as the Leafs sweep Detroit in the final for the second straight year.
This is the fifth Stanley Cup for the Leafs and their coach, Hap Day, in the '40s.
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