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Getliffe going strong at 91


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                              BASEBALL: Fifty years on, Nationals field-general Robinson still has a deep passion for the game, D7
                              UNIVERSITY HOCKEY: Late goal by Redmen forces deciding Game 3 in semifinal vs. Gee-Gees, D10

                 ❚ ❚ ❚ T H E G A Z E T T E | MONTREAL | SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2006 | SPORTS EDITOR: STU COWAN | 514 987 2475 | scowan@thegazette.canwest.com

  Carbo                                                                                         SPOTLIGHT STORY

 Coach readies Habs
for long playoff push
            RED FISHER
           THE GAZETTE

Canadiens head coach-in-wait-
ing Guy Carbonneau insists
(well, almost) he knows what’s
needed to get results from this
bunch in their final 26 games of
the regular season.
   Call it Carbo’s Theory of Addi-
tion by Subtraction.
   Fifteen games into his new job,
Carbonneau has been around
long enough to know that the
Canadiens aren’t going anywhere
in a final, 26-game gallop to a
hoped-for playoff spot unless they
do a whole lot better than they’ve
done in their first 56. Put it this
way: Carbonneau knows it’s no
walk in the park toward the play-
offs, starting Tuesday in Long Is-
land, N.Y., in the first of a six-
game road trip, particularly when
you’re No. 13 in a 15-team Eastern
Conference in terms of offence.
And with José Theodore gone for
what probably will be for the re-
mainder of the regular season,
their goals-against in the East
(No. 8) isn’t so hoity-toity either.
   Anyway here’s Professor Car-
bo’s theory: “If we cut down on
the time we spend in our zone by
seven, eight, nine or 10 minutes,
we’ll be OK. If, instead of having
to kill eight or nine power plays                                                                                                                                                                   COLIN O’CONNOR THE GAZETTE
we cut that to four or five, we’ll            Former Canadien Ray Getliffe, 91, grips one of his old hockey sticks while showing off Stanley Cup rings, one of which he won with the Habs in 1944.
be fine. If we clear four or five re-
bounds instead or only one or
two, we’ll be doing all right,”
Carbonneau said yesterday       .                           OLDEST LIVING EX-CANADIEN is down-to-earth and recalls events with absolute clarity
   Makes sense.
   Smart fella, that Carbo. Also,
good Guy   .
                                                              – including the day at practice he gave some kid named Richard his Rocket nickname
   On the other hand, easier said

                                              Getliffe going strong at 91
than done, eh?
   The Canadiens, you should
know, have won seven and lost
eight since Carbonneau was
brought back to the Canadiens
family Not great, but not bad, ei-
ther, since the Canadiens earned
12 points out of a possible 20 in                                                                    A N D Y L E V Y - A J Z E N K O P F S P E C I A L TO T H E G A Z E T T E
the last 10 games before the
Olympic break, largely because                                      Here’s a trivia      cent interview at his home. “I’m on the          narian, the man doesn’t have a hand,        kids.When it was his turn to bring the

                                                   ONDON, ONT. –
of the NHL’s brain-dead math of                    question for Canadiens fans out       bench, sittin’ beside Murph Campbell             he has a vice. Next is his amazing          Stanley Cup to London last summer
awarding a point to losers.                        there: Who is Ray Getliffe and        … and (Elmer) Lach passed the puck to                     .
                                                                                                                                          memory He recounts experiences and          for Ray Day he signed autographs for
   “We’ve been good,” Carbon-                why is he one of the most important         the kid. (He) took off on a B-line for the       events with absolute clarity. But the       hours and made sure the kids got all
neau said a tad grudgingly.                  players to wear a Habs jersey?              net, and I said to Murph: ‘Geez! That            most notable thing about Getliffe is        the pictures with the Cup they wanted.
“We’ve been playing more as a                  Give up?                                  kid went in there just like a rocket!’           how down-to-earth he is. It’s a trait his   I hope he lives forever.”
team, and that’s a step forward.               Getliffe, who at 91 is believed to be       “Dink Carroll, a Gazette writer, was           friends and peers all remark on.               Getliffe, who was born in Galt, Ont.,
Hey, since I’ve been here, we                the oldest living former Canadiens          sitting behind the bench and the name              “The one thing that stands out is         in 1914, was inducted into the London
haven’t wanted to change the                 player, is also the man who gave Mau-       stuck from there.”                               that he is the genuine article. No B.S.,”   Sports Hall of Fame in 2004. Few oth-
‘whole’ thing … know what I                  rice Richard his nickname “The Rock-          And just like that, Richard had his            said Bruce Huff, founding chairperson       ers can count Elmer Lach and Jean
mean? I’ve been talking a lot to             et” nearly 60 years ago. It’s a story       new moniker, all thanks to Getliffe’s            of the London Sports Hall of Fame.          Béliveau as lifelong friends and get
the players and what they’ve told            Getliffe is always happy to recount.        offhand remark.                                  “He’s a remarkable specimen at his          away with calling them “junior.”
me is that their big problem is                “We were at a practice and this kid         The first thing you notice when you             age, most unselfish, always ready to go
that they haven’t been playing as            had come up,” Getliffe said during a re-    meet Getliffe is his grip. For a nonage-         to bat for anybody (and) loves                  Please see GETLIFFE, Page D10
a team.”

    Please see HABS, Page D10

                                       Skinning the competition
                                                                                                                    nology adds an average of
                                          ADIDAS BODYSUIT BOOSTS OUTPUT                                             5.3 per cent in energy improve-
                                                                                                                    ment for cross-country skiers,
                                        Olympic athletes put Canadian technology                                    and a faster sprint time of
                                                                                                                    1.1 per cent over 30 metres.

                                       to good use with new Clima TechFit garment                                     Skiers wearing the suit also ex-
                                                                                                                    perienced a 1.3-per-cent reduc-
                                                                                                                    tion in oxygen consumption. The
                                              CHARLES MANDEL                guide muscles in their move-            athletes gain the extra oxygen be-

  4-up                   Lead
                         over the
  final four holes by Mike Weir,
                                            CANWEST NEWS SERVICE

                                       CALGARY –  New clothing technol-
                                       ogy developed at the University
                                                                            ment patterns.
                                                                              Darren Stefanyshyn, an asso-
                                                                            ciate professor who helped cre-
                                                                            ate the technology said the cloth-
                                                                                                                    cause the Lycra-like suit com-
                                                                                                                    presses their muscles, minimiz-
                                                                                                                    ing the tiny shock waves that re-
                                                                                                                    sult from the impact of the skis
  who fell to Geoff Ogilvy on the      of Calgary is contributing to        ing represents a departure from         on the ground. Over time, this
  third extra hole yesterday at the    medal-winning performances at        other performance apparel.              translates into an energy saving
  Match Play Championship in           the winter Olympics.                   Previously, sports garments           the athletes can draw upon.
  Carlsbad, Calif. Story, Page D6        Researchers at the kinesiology     have concentrated on aerody-              Germany’s Georg Hettich won
                                       department’s Human Perfor-           namics. Adidas’s new body suit          a gold medal in Nordic combined
                                       mance Laboratory spent the last      allows athletes to efficiently gen-                                ,
                                                                                                                    this week in Turin, Italy in one

  1-up                  Margin
                        of victory
  for Chad Campbell, who ousted
                                       five years working with adidas
                                       on the creation of a “second
                                       skin” for athletes called the Cli-
                                                                            erate      additional
                                                                            Stefanyshyn said.

                                                                              “It’s a first step that will lead to
                                                                                                                    of the suits, and the Canadian
                                                                                                                    men’s bobsled team also wore
                                                                                                                    the apparel during the pair’s sil-
  top-seeded Tiger Woods from          ma TechFit suit. The suit em-        a lot of developments in perfor-        ver-medal run.                                                                     SVEN NACKSTRAND AFP/GETTY IMAGES

  the Match Play Championship.         ploys a series of thermoplastic      mance apparel.”                                                                      Wearing new adidas suit, Germany’s Georg Hettich won Olympic
                                       urethane bands that support and        The so-called Powerweb tech-             Please see CLOTHING, Page D6              gold in Nordic combined this week at Turin Games.
D10        SPORTS                                                                                                                                                     ❚ ❚ ❚ THE GAZETTE, MONTREAL, SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2006

                                                                              UNIVERSITY HOCKEY
Redmen ride returning Martin                                                                                                                                                                         Players
         REDMEN 4, GEE-GEES 3                                                of Game 1 because of a game
                                                                             misconduct penalty for a hit
                                                                             from behind in the first period.
                                                                                                                     ments after Wednesday’s game
                                                                                                                     and they were a factor tonight,”
                                                                                                                     the coach continued. “I was cer-
                                                                                                                                                          backhander past McGill goalie
                                                                                                                                                          Mathieu Poitras from directly in
                                                                                                                                                          front of the McGill goal at 5:56 of
Centre pots goal and three assists as McGill                                   Left-winger Charles Gauthier
                                                                             also scored twice for McGill.
                                                                                                                     tainly glad to see that and I know
                                                                                                                     they guys really felt confident in
                                                                                                                                                          the second and added his second
                                                                                                                                                          of the game on a carbon copy of              CONTINUED FROM D5

forces Game 3 in OUA semifinal vs. Ottawa                                      “It was a tough game, really
                                                                             tough, but that’s what we expect-
                                                                                                                     what they were doing out there.”
                                                                                                                       McGill jumped to a 2-0 lead
                                                                                                                                                          his first goal at 10:12.
                                                                                                                                                            McGill tied the score at three           “We (the new team behind the
                                                                             ed of the situation we found our-       early in the first period on goals    when Gauthier added his second           bench) don’t want to change
         RANDY PHILLIPS                   Game 3 goes tomorrow night         selves in,” Redmen head coach           by Gauthier and left-winger          of the game at 7:47 of the third         everything, but this break has
          THE GAZETTE                  at 7 at McConnell Arena.              Martin Raymond said.                    Shawn Shewchuk.                      period and Martin blasted home           helped us to change something
                                          The Redmen, who only lost            “What was especially frustrat-          Gauthier opened the scoring        his first goal of the playoffs and        here and there,” Carbonneau
OTTAWA – It’s back to McGill.          once en route to capturing their      ing for us tonight was that after       by beating Gee-Gees goalie           winner at 15:04.                         said. “I don’t know whether or
  Centre Benoît Martin’s goal          second straight regular-season        taking a 2-0 lead, we took five or       Mathieu Blanchard at 1:25 of the       The series returns to McGill           not the guys have been listening,
with less than five minutes re-         title, faced elimination last night   six penalties in a row,” Raymond        first. Shewchuk followed with         where the Redmen have only lost          but we’ve got what … 12 points in
maining in the third period gave       after suffering a 2-1 loss at home    said. “We hadn’t changed any-           another at 5:39.                     once this season.                        our last 10 games, that’s good.
the No. 1-ranked Redmen a 4-3          in the first game of the series        thing from what we were doing,            Ottawa forward Pierre-André          “The guys know what they               The break has allowed us to
win over the Gee-Gees in Ottawa        Wednesday    .                        but the penalties suddenly came         LeBlanc scored in the final           have to do to now,” Raymond              change things here and there,
last night to force a deciding            Martin, a fourth-year veteran      and the next thing we know,             minute of the period, the first of    said .                                   and that’s really good.”
game in the OUA Eastern Con-           from Gaspé, was in on every           they’ve got all the momentum            what would be three straight                                                    Carbonneau insists it’s not a
ference men’s hockey best-of-          McGill goal last night, picking up    and were back in the game.              goals by the Gee-Gees. Centre                  rphillips@                     bad idea to get feedback from the
three semifinal.                        three assists, after missing most       “We did make some adjust-             Ben McLeod whipped a hard                thegazette.canwest.com               players, and what he’s been get-
                                                                                                                                                                                                   ting from them is that the melt-
                                                                                                                                                                                                   down since his arrival is linked
                 When asked about his greatest accomplishment, oldest living former Hab says: ‘Staying alive!                                                                                      inexorably with the team’s in-
                                                                                                                                                                                                   ability to play as a team. Players
                  I’m nearing 92, so it’s a big accomplishment.’ But his life today is anything but sedentary                                                                                      who were expected to enjoy ca-
                                                                                                                                                                                                   reer seasons (hi, there, Mike
                                                                                                                                                                                                   Ribeiro and Radek Bonk) simply
                                                                                                                                                                                                   haven’t done it, and talking with

Getliffe | Won two Stanley Cups
                                                                                                                                                                                                   the players, Carbonneau says, is-
                                                                                                                                                                                                   n’t a bad idea.
                                                                                                                                                                                                     “When I was playing, if (the
                                                                                                                                                                                                   coaches) didn’t talk to me, I told
                                                                                                                                                                                                   them, anyway,” Carbonneau
                                                                                                                                                                                                   said. “Lookit, we should be scor-
                                                                                                                                                                                                   ing a lot more goals. With the
    CONTINUED FROM D5                                                                                                                                                                              new rules, everything was sup-
                                                                                                                                                                                                   posed to be great. I mean … new
   Despite failing vision and re-                                                                                                                                                                  rules, everything was going to be
duced mobility Getliffe remains                                                                                                                                                                                      .
                                                                                                                                                                                                   much more easy No obstruction.
sanguine about his long life.                                                                                                                                                                      Things were going to be wide
When asked about his greatest                                                                                                                                                                      open. But goals always have been
accomplishment, his response is                                                                                                                                                                    so hard to score and still are. If
as quick as his wit: “Staying                                                                                                                                                                      the puck isn’t going into the net,
alive! I’m nearing 92 (in April),                                                                                                                                                                  the guys think, ‘Well, maybe I
so it’s a big accomplishment.”                                                                                                                                                                     should be playing better defen-
   Getliffe played 10 seasons in                                                                                                                                                                   sively.’ It hasn’t happened. It
the NHL (1935-45) as a centre/left-                                                                                                                                                                won’t happen. What we’ve got to
winger who could bang in the                                                                                                                                                                       do is play a lot better in our zone,
corners and light the lamp.                                                                                                                                                                        and I think we’re getting there.
   “I was a good team player,” he                                                                                                                                                                    “In the last 10 games, we’re
said modestly “Certainly not an                                                                                                                                                                    finding ways to stay in a game
all-star, maybe better than aver-                                                                                                                                                                  and that hasn’t been happening
age.”                                                                                                                                                                                              before. Talking to the guys has
   He broke into the NHL with                                                                                                                                                                      helped. We get ideas of what
the Boston Bruins and helped                                                                                                                                                                       they like and don’t like, and
them win the Stanley Cup in                                                                                                                                                                        then we make decisions accord-
1939. He was then traded to Mon-                                                                                                                                                                   ingly .”
treal, where he won another Cup                                                                                                                                                                      Offence?
with the Canadiens in 1944. He                                                                                                                                                                       “You know … when you give
hung up his skates for good in                                                                                                                                                                     up 35 or 40 shots a game, and
1945 after refusing a trade to De-                                                                                                                                                                 stand 40 minutes in your own
troit.                                                                                                                                                                                             zone, it’s really hard to get of-
   “I didn’t know I was traded till                                                                                                                                                                fence. I think one thing that
I got a telegram from Jack                                                                                                                                                                         we’ve cleaned up in the last few
Adams telling me to report to                                                                                                                                                                      weeks is that changing a little
Windsor for training camp,”                                                                                                                                                                        thing here or there isn’t what it’s
Getliffe recalled. “I’d already                                                                                                                                                                    all about, it’s about making the
moved my family from Boston                                                                                                                                                                        players realize it’s effort. And
and settled in Montreal. I had a                                                                                                                                                                   then, it’s not that this thing
job offer at Simpson’s. So I felt 10                                                                                                                                                               should be there … it’s that you
years was a good run and it was                                                                                                                                                                    have to be there … and this play
time to hang them up.”                                                                                                                                                                             has to happen. Once you clean
   He says he was proud to end                                                                                                                                                                     that up, and you spend less time
his career as a Canadien.                                                                                                                                                                          in our zone, then you’re rested
   Though he’s humble about his                                                                                                                                                                    and we can create more offence.
on-ice accomplishments, Getliffe                                                                                                                                 COLIN O’CONNOR THE GAZETTE          “What went on before I got
confesses the highlight of his ca-     “My friend across the road is also from Montreal,” says Ray Getliffe, 91, shown at home in London, Ont., holding photo of the 1944                          here? That was then, this is now.
reer was a six-point night on Feb.     Canadiens team that won the Stanley Cup. “He tells me he remembers watching me play when he was a boy. He’ll be 80 next month.”                             I wasn’t here. I can’t blame any-
6, 1943, when the Canadiens beat                                                                                                                                                                         .
                                                                                                                                                                                                   body There’s still a long way to
the Bruins 8-3. Coach Dick Irvin                                                                                                                                                                   go. We still have a lot of things to
Sr. gave him the playing opportu-                                                          .
                                                                             their family These days Getliffe        NHL. He’s impressed with to-                                                  improve. We expected José
nity of a lifetime.                                                          is busy helping his wife conva-         day’s young talent in the NHL,             Ray Getliffe’s                     (Theodore) to take a week off
   “We played Boston and defeat-                                             lesce from knee-replacement             particularly Rick Nash and Sid-        career NHL statistics                  and come back fresher. He’d have
ed them,” Getliffe recalled. “I                                                       .
                                                                             surgery He helps her cook, clean        ney Crosby. And he’s happy, if                                                a good week of working on de-
was fortunate to get five goals                                               and entertain family and friends        not cynical, about the rule           REGULAR SEASON                          tails and then coming back
that night (and an assist). Toe                                                                   .
                                                                             when they stop by They are en-          changes.                                                                      strong. And now it’s not going to
                                                                                                                                                                            GP G A Pts PIM
Blake was hurt and I went on a                                               joying their golden years with            “The rule changes!” he                                                      happen. And once again, it’s not
line with (Elmer) Lach and the                                               each other. Still, there is some        scoffed. “They haven’t changed
                                                                                                                                                           1935-36 Boston 1 0           0 0 2      going to happen.”
Rocket, and the puck just fol-                                               longing for his former home.            the rules. They’re just playing       1936-37 Boston 48 16        15 31 28      So is Carbonneau a trifle con-
lowed me around all night.                                                      Getliffe remembers his time in                             .
                                                                                                                     like we used to play There’s no       1937-38 Boston 36 11        13 24 16    cerned about the goaltending for
   “I was talking to Elmer the                                               Montreal fondly  .                      clutching and grabbing, and we        1938-39 Boston 43 10       12 22 11     the Canadiens’ final 26 games?
other day and he joked about it.                                                “Our stay in Montreal was            didn’t have that, either.”                                                    “It’s not about (Cristobal Huet
He said, ‘You know, Ray, Irvin                                               wonderful,” he said. “If it wasn’t        He admits he hasn’t followed
                                                                                                                                                           1939-40 Montreal46 11      12 23 29     and Yann Danis). It’s about the
took you off the ice that night so                                           for the fact our family was up          the Canadiens as closely as he’d      1940-41 Montreal 39 15     10 25 25     rest of the guys,” he said.
you wouldn’t get the sixth one!’ ”                                           here, we’d still be in Montreal,        like, but he was astute enough to     1941-42 Montreal 45 11      15 26 35      If the Canadiens don’t do as
Getliffe said with a laugh.                                                  enjoying that great city .”             suggest a major change was in         1942-43 Montreal 50 18     28 46 26     well as Carbonneau expects, it
   He maintains Irvin was the                                                   However, Getliffe doesn’t            the offing only days before gener-                                             won’t be because of the lack of
best coach he ever played for.                                               waste time pining. His life is          al manager Bob Gainey took
                                                                                                                                                           1943-44 Montreal44 28      25 53 44                               ,
                                                                                                                                                                                                   on-ice work. Yesterday the team
   “What made him great was his                                              anything but sedentary. He re-          over the coaching duties from         1944-45 Montreal 41 16       7 23 34    spent an astonishing two hours
no-nonsense approach and his                                                 mains an avid golfer and gets in        Claude Julien. And while many         Totals          393 136   137 273 250   on Verdun Auditorium ice, re-
fairness,” Getliffe said. “He nev-                                           as much playing time as he can,         people have forgotten Getliffe’s                                              turned to the Bell Centre and did
er came into a room and ranted                                               sometimes up to three times a           contribution to Montreal hockey  ,                                            off-ice work. C’mon now, is that
and raved. He’d just take you                     COURTESY OF RAY GETLIFFE   week in the summer.                     he insists on making light of his    to end the interview to attend to        any way to treat millionaires?
aside and so forth.”                   Ray Getliffe played 10 seasons           “I break 90 once in a while, but     longevity .                          Lorna.                                     The day before: one hour and
   It’s one of a host of happy         in the NHL, from 1935-45.             I can’t see the ball once I hit it so     “My friend across the road is        He waved goodbye from his              40 minutes on the ice.
memories from his days as a Hab                                              it’s a little more difficult,” he        also from Montreal,” he said.        doorway, still chuckling, his              No kidding, all that was lack-
and why Montreal will forever                                                said.                                   “He tells me he remembers            Stanley Cup ring glinting in the         ing was jet lag.
be in his thoughts.                    home for almost half a century  .        Clearly, his natural abilities       watching me play when he was a       sun.
   Getliffe and his wife of 71         In 1990, they moved to London,        and vigour are well intact. And         boy He’ll be 80 next month.”
                                                                                                                         .                                  They don’t make them like                         rfisher@
years, Lorna, called Montreal          Ont., to retire and be closer to      he’s never stopped following the          Getliffe laughed and then had      that anymore.                                thegazette.canwest.com

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