If you gaze at a minor league team photo long enough, you won’t see a sailboat, but you will probably find a few guys who went on to play in the NHL. It’s like watching a Burger King commercial from ten years ago starring your favorite television actor before they were famous. Only in this case, it’s a hockey player who was riding buses to far-flung midsize American towns, such as Cleveland.
Speaking of Cleveland, I purchased this 1963-64 Cleveland Barons team photo at a card show. I didn’t actually care if was made in 1964 or if it was a reproduction, so long as it wasn’t a crappy computer print. Plus, these guys were Calder Cup Champions.
Les Binkley (front row, right) — The Pittsburgh Penguins first-ever first string goalie. He played 196 games in the NHL and 81 games in the World Hockey Association.
Dick Mattiussi (third row, third from right) – Played 200 games in the NHL with the Pittsburgh Penguins and California / Oakland Seals teams.
Larry Zeidel (third row, fourth from right) – Played 158 games in the NHL with the Detroit Red Wings, Chicago Black Hawks and Philadelphia Flyers. Zeidel spent 13 consecutive years in the minors before returning to the NHL with the Flyers in their inaugural season.
Ted Harris (second row, fifth from right) – The alternate captain for the Barons won the Eddie Shore Award as the AHL’s best defensemen, then went on to a 12-year NHL career (788 games total) with the Montreal Canadiens, Minnesota North Stars, St. Louis Blues, Detroit Red Wings and Philadelphia Flyers.
As it turns out, this picture is most likely from 1964. My girlfriend studied some lithography and screen printing while in college, and she tells me that this picture is a plate lithograph. Oil-based ink was applied to the surface of glossy paper using a metal plate, sort of like how newspapers are printed. You can actually see the ink on top of the surface of the paper, which has slightly yellowed with age. Had this been a reprint, it most likely would have been a photographic print…or a crappy computer print. ■