Games 9 & 10 - The 1913 Season
Game 9 (February 11, 1913) - Moncton Victoria 4 - Sydney Millionaires 3 - For the fans who bought tickets to see the rivalry and the brutality of these two teams, they were not disappointed. McGregor of the Victorias was struck with a high stick on the face, received a severe cut to the head and was knocked unconscious.
This very rough game was also characterized by the presence of Harry Scott playing for Moncton. Harry was still under contract to the Halifax Crescents and under the MPHA rules was not permitted to play for another team after the February 1st deadline. Manager MacDonald of Sydney filed a protest before the game which was ignored by the Moncton management. To make matters worse, Scott reportedly took a run at Sydney's goalie Toby MacDonald. According to an account of the game, on a rush up the ice Scott passed the puck off to his team mate Andy Kyle and purposely drove Toby into the net allowing Kyle the opportunity to score. Later in the game, Scott also skated over to Toby and wrestled his stick away, forcing Toby to overturn the net to stop play. After this loss, the Sydney team quickly packed up and headed to New Glasgow for their next game the following night.
Game 10 (February 12, 1913) - New Glasgow Cubs 7 - Sydney Millionaires 3 - The Sydney Millionaires faced their second defeat in two nights at the hands of New Glasgow in front of 2000 excited Cub's fans. According to reports, the game was fast and relatively clean, with the play on the ice being much closer than the score appeared. This second loss in a row was a big blow to Sydney and it's fans. The team had appeared to be heading toward the league championship and a chance to challenge for the Stanley Cup, but these two losses gave the Moncton Victorias and the New Glasgow Cubs the upper hand in the league standings. Even the players themselves were becoming visibly frustrated with their own play. This became evident when a Sydney reporter witnessed some infighting among the Sydney team after a loss. According to this unnamed reporter, he witnessed a "row between Fraser and Randall several days ago in New Glasgow when some dirty linen was being washed by some of the players after the defeat of the Millionaires by the cubs."
The tears are falling once again,
Oh, take us back to home and mother;
Hockey life, it seems quite plain,
Is one d----d trimming after another.
- Otto B. Kilde
Right after the game, the Millionaires headed back to Sydney to prepare for their next match against New Glasgow the following evening. This was a vital game for the Millionaires to win if they had any chance at the 1913 MPHA championship.
On February 12th, it was announced by representatives of the Quebec Bulldogs and the National Hockey Association that they would be rejecting the offer from the Pacific Coast Hockey League to play a spring series in Toronto for the Stanley Cup. The Quebec team executive felt it would be unfair to their fans to play a game outside the ancient city. Since Quebec City did not have an artificial ice surface it made a spring game against the western team impossible. This was good news for the MPHA since the league became the only Stanley Cup challenger for the 1913 season.
Between the two New Glasgow games, the war of words involving the Moncton Vics and the Sydney Millionaires heated up. Moncton press publically accused Cap Macdonald of intentionally cross checking McGregor in the face knocking him out. The Sydney press countered by claiming that Moncton's own player, Walker, had accidently high-sticked McGregor injuring his own team mate. The war of words was also heating up around the protest that Sydney had filed against Moncton's playing of Harry Scott. The sports editor of the Halifax paper was enjoying the controversy and was not shy to publish a "told you so" in the Halifax paper referring back to the controversy between Sydney and the Halifax team over Scott.
On a side note, an interesting tidbit was published in the Halifax Echo on February 11th claiming that the Quebec Bulldogs had sent a telegram to Sydney's injured player Harvey Richardson (presently recovering in a Halifax Infirmary) an offer to play for the Bulldogs. Quebec had sent the offer to Saskatoon which was then redirected to Halifax. The Bulldogs had obviously not heard about Richardson's transfer to Sydney or his subsequent broken leg.