Relive a bit of Minto Cup History

Relive a bit of Minto Cup History

Joined: Mon Jun 26, 2000 9:41 pm

Wed Aug 31, 2011 12:16 am #1

Yep the Whitby Warriors captured this year's Minto Cup but take a look through the years from the beginning when Ontario and B.C. would alternate playing Manitoba before playing for the Canadian Minto Cup Championship. Manitoba was good enough to beat Ontario in 1954 before losing in the Minto Cup final to BC and again in 1955 when Manitoba beat B.C. before Ontario was able to stop them for the Minto Cup. I was happy today to find the final missing Minto Cup semi-final game played in 1957 between Manitoba and Victoria Shamrocks so I have complete statistics of all semi-final series. http://wampsbibleoflacrosse.com/newstats/oldminto2.html" . It's going to be real tough to complete all Minto Cup finals as the newspapers quit carrying summaries in the 70's and 80's and the teams seem to have not kept rcords from those years. What a shame!

Wamper
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Joined: Wed Feb 10, 2010 1:49 am

Wed Aug 31, 2011 8:18 am #2

I find it interesting how the game seemed to peak in Manitoba at a time that wasn't really one of the peaks in the traditional powers of BC and Ontario. It would be great if Manitoba ever got back to that point. Why not? The Jets are back there, the Bombers support is tremendous, and TNSE (Jets and arena ownership group) might just be interested in an NLL team. There's thousands on the Jets' wait list, that might just carry over to an NLL team. And if lacrosse becomes higher profile, more kids play, and the level of play increases.

Has there been any discussion of reviving the format you mention, with Alberta taking the place of Manitoba? It would give Ontario and BC fans the traditional Minto format so many desire, and perhaps it even makes it more interesting for Alberta teams. At this stage in Alberta's lacrosse development, winning a semi-final series to advance to the Minto might do more to increase the game's profile than always being the underdog at a round-robin format.
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Joined: Tue Jun 27, 2000 2:00 pm

Wed Aug 31, 2011 12:46 pm #3

The reason Manitoba was successful in the 1950s probably had nothing to do with Manitoba lacrosse. I'd suggest it was the level of competition they faced those two years. In 1954 they beat a Long Branch team which did not dominate the OLA the way most league champions did in those days. Plus the team had zero Minto experience. They were ripe for picking. I'm not sure about the BC team of 1955 but the situation might have been similar.

Of course it might have been all about Manitoba. When you host the semi final practically every year you are bound to pull an upset sooner or later. Perhaps that's what happened in '54. The following year the team would have been that much more confident and they managed to win again. But the idea of Manitoba lacrosse peaking in the mid-1950s is a bit of a stretch. Maybe if they'd actually won a couple of Mintos you could make a case. They only won a couple of series in which they likely got all the breaks - as home teams are prone to do during inter-league competitions. Add in the fact Manitoba stopped competing for good shortly after that, then it hardly seems like a peak at all.

Now you're absolutely right that the NLL in Winnipeg would be the best thing to grow the game in Manitoba. As Peterborough proved in 1951, you build from the top down. This has happened countless times in lacrosse history.

Let's get the NLL in Winnipeg then we can add another province to the Minto competition. Spare Ontario the burden of having to host the final so often.
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Joined: Wed Feb 10, 2010 1:49 am

Wed Aug 31, 2011 6:54 pm #4

There's no question Manitoba's "peak" wasn't entirely them from all accounts, but at the same time, there isn't even any junior A lacrosse left in Manitoba (and little in the way of junior B), so it seems interest is down from where it was. I found the stories very interesting, and also found it interesting the semifinal was in Manitoba each year. What was the rationale for that?

Right now, after Ontario and BC, there's Alberta. But then there's a big drop off. Saskatchewan may be next, I'm encouraged to see Junior B teams in smaller (15,000ish) cities such as Yorkton.
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Joined: Tue Jun 27, 2000 2:00 pm

Wed Aug 31, 2011 9:40 pm #5

the thinking was that the Ontario or BC champ had to travel through Winnipeg to get to the Minto Cup final so Manitoba had nothing to lose challenging them to a series. There were years in the Mann Cup when the OLA champ had to play series in Cornwall, Thunder Bay, Winnipeg, Regina or Alberta on their way to BC.

When created in 1901 the Minto cup was a challenge trophy. The league which won it held it until a team from another league defeated them. In theory any league in Canada could challenge for it.
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