Top 10 - Best starts to a season after 30 games

Thursday, 21.03.2013 / 10:55 PM canadiens.com

Best starts to a season after 30 games

10 – 1959-1960 (43 points)

Riding an unprecdented streak of four consecutive Stanley Cup titles, the Canadiens got off to a roaring start en route to their fifth straight championship. During their first 30 games of the season, Toe Blake’s squad posted a record of 18-5-7. One contest in particular stood out amongst the rest, that of November 1, 1959, when goaltender Jacques Plante sported a mask in a game for the first time in a tilt against the Rangers. The Canadiens earned a 3-1 victory. .

9 – 1978-1979 (44 points)

With Scotty Bowman at the helm, the Canadiens sought to capture a fourth straight Stanley Cup title. After starting the year with a record of 20-6-4 through 30 games, the Habs closed out the season with 115 points before defeating the Leafs, Bruins and Rangers to hoist the Stanley Cup for the 22nd time in team history. Guy Lafleur registered 129 points that season, the third highest tally of his career.

8 – 1927-1928 (44 points)

At a time when the schedule was comprised of just 44 games, head coach Cecil Hart had the winning touch as his squad posted a record of 19-5-6 through 30 games. One thing is certain, Hart could count on the services of the dependable George Hainsworth, who captured the Vezina Trophy after posting 13 shutouts and a 1.05 goals against average. It was also during that season that Howie Morenz became the first NHL player to hit the 50-point mark in one season.

7 – 1975-1976 (45 points)

A dynasty has to start somewhere. In the case of the Canadiens of the 1970s, that dynasty started in 1975 when the bleu-blanc-rouge registered 45 points during their first 30 games of the season. The Habs also had a perfect record of 10-0-4 at the Montreal Forum. Stanely Cup titles followed, one after another.

6 – 1971-1972 (45 points)

With a record of 19-4-7 after 30 games, Scotty Bowman’s squad was unbeatable on home ice with a record of 11-0-3. Rookie sensation Guy Lafleur also made his NHL debut that year. In his first game, Lafleur made his presence felt by registering one goal and one assist against the Rangers.

5 – 1955-1956 (45 points)

As mentioned in a previous page, every dynasty has a starting point. In this case, fans that took in the first 30 games of the 1955-1956 edition of the Canadiens also witnessed the beginning of the dynasty of the 1950s. It was during these games in particular that Jean Béliveau would re-write the NHL rulebook by scoring three goals in 44 seconds against the Bruins on November 5, 1955. Come season’s end, the Canadiens picked up their eighth Stanley Cup title in team history.

4 – 2012-2013 (45 points)

After a lockout that lasted half a season, the Canadiens started the 2012-13 campaign in force, posting a record of 20-5-5 through 30 games. Boasting one of the best offensive attacks in the NHL, the Canadiens scored an average of 3.23 goals per game.

3 – 1976-1977 (48 points)

The team that is often referred to as the best in hockey history got off to a sparkling start. After 30 games, the Canadiens had a record of 22-4-4, finishing the year with an impressive tally of 132 points, and a record of 60-8-12. Guy Lafleur had the best season of his career, collecting 136 points. He also had a team-record 28-game point streak.

2 – 1944-1945 (48 points)

While seasons were still just 50 games in length Dick Irvin’s squad started strong, with a record of 23-5-2. The club’s successes were due, in part, to a certain Maurice « The Rocket » Richard, who became the first player in history to score 50 goals in 50 games in a single season.

1 – 1943-1944 (49 points)

Fans who attended Canadiens games at the Montreal Forum during the 1943-1944 season always left the building with a smile. Always. During the first 30 games of the year, the Habs posted an overall record of 22-3-5. Their record on home ice, however, was flawless at 14 wins and two ties. Goaltender Bill Durnan had a lot to do with the Canadiens’ success, registering a string of 14 consecutive games without a loss to start the season, the longest such streak for a rookie goaltender at the time. That spring, the Canadiens captured their fifth Stanley Cup title in team history, besting the Maple Leafs and Blackhawks one after another.

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