Monday, October 31, 2011

Absurd Goalie Monday: Wilf Cude

Time to look back at a different time, a different era, and a time where we had a decent amount of British players in the league. This is a time were because franchises came and went, the goalies often were just hanging around, waiting for someone to get injured. Luckily, for this week's AGM-- he got on with a lot of teams because of injury. However, he has been blamed for being part of the darkest days of one of the leagues most hallowed franchises. This week, the profile of Wilf Cude.

Born in Barry, South Wales, Great Britain; Cude honed his craft when he moved over to Winnipeg, Manitoba, playing for St. Vital Athletic Club for three years and then moving to the senior leagues with the Winnipeg Wellingtons in the 1928-29 season. The 1929-30 season had Cude play with the Melville Millionaires, going 13-6-1 in 20 games that season.

In February of 1930, Cude signed with the Pittsburgh Pirates; but would never play a game there as the Pirates would relocated to Philadelphia and become the Quakers. The 1930-31, Cude would make his NHL debut with the Quakers, but would only go 2-25-3 in 30 games for the hapless Quakers, who could disband after the season.

With a lack of jobs, Cude would pretty much go anywhere and everywhere in the 1931-32 season. He would play two games with the Chicago Blackhawks (1-1-0), one game in relief for the Boston Bruins (no decision), and one game with the IHL's Syracuse Stars (a tie). Cude would spend most of the time that season in the Can-Am League with the Boston Cubs, finishing with a 7-7-1 record in 15 games. Cude played in the Can-Am again in the 1932-33 season, while returning to Philadelphia with the Arrows, going 21-9-2 in 32 games, then 2-3 in five playoff games.

In a cross-league trade, Cude was traded from Philadelphia to the Montreal Canadiens before the 1933-34 season, but would only play one games (a win and shutout) for the Canadiens. Cude would play in the IHL for 19 games with Syracuse (no record available), before the Canadiens loaned out Cude to the Detroit Red Wings for a bulk of the season. With the Wings, Cude went 15-6-8 with four shutouts, then going 4-5 in nine playoff games.

Cude would be returned to the Canadiens in the 1934-35 season, compiling a 19-23-6 record in 48 games, then 0-1-1 in two playoff games. It would be a bit worse for Cude in the 1935-36 season, only putting up a 11-26-10-- though he did have six shutouts in that season. The 1936-37 season was a bounce-back year for Cude, going 22-17-5 in 47 games, but going 2-3 in five playoff games. Back for the 1937-38 campaign, Cude had a 18-17-12 record, then 1-2 in the playoffs. The 1938-39 season saw Cude split work with Claude Bourque, as Cude played in 23 games with an 8-11-4 record.

For the 1939-40 season, Cude lost his spot with the Canadiens after only seven games (1-5-1) and spent most of the season in the AHL with the New Haven Eagles, playing in 44 games with a 23-18-1 record, then going 1-2 in three playoff games. Cude would return to the Canadiens again in the 1940-41 season, but only for three games, completing with a 2-1 record before retiring.

To note, Cude played in the Howie Morenz Memorial Game and the Babe Siebert Memorial Game, which were two of the first few All-Star games to take place.

After hockey, Cude owned a private distribution company in Quebec for British American Oil. After a lengthy illnes, Cude passed away in May of 1968 at the age of 57. Cude is an Honored Member of the Manitoba Hockey Hall of Fame.

He wasn't the biggest guy and didn't seem to have the most routine route to the NHL; he stuck to it and kept himself out there before getting the break he needed in Montreal. It just shows that if you stick around through the toughest of times, you will get rewarded at some point in time.

No comments: