Plenty of players have superstitions that take the form of a good-luck charm, something tangible they keep in their stall or travel with, but surely goalie Wilf Cude was the one and only player who brought his charm out onto the ice with him.
A goalie in the 1930s, Cude played for five teams, most impressively with the Montreal Canadiens, with whom he played nearly every minute of every game from 1928 to 1938. His best year came about by accident. He started 1933-34 with the Canadiens but after one game was loaned to Detroit for a year. Cude took the team to the Stanley Cup finals before losing to Chicago.
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Cude always played with a rabbit’s foot in the top of one of his pads. Before every game he stuffed it in, and after every game he took it out. One day, a mouse got at it in the dressing room, and Cude never found it or replaced it. He continued to play with the same pads, but his rabbit’s-footless luck managed to hold up for the rest of his career (although he never did win the Cup).
QUICK SHOT JOE DALEY
Goalie Joe Daley got his big break with expansion in 1967, first in the NHL and later for the Winnipeg Jets of the WHA, for whom he played the entire seven years of the league’s existence. Daley always started getting dressed exactly half an hour before the pre-game skate, putting on only his socks, pads, and pants. With fifteen minutes to go, he put on the rest of his equipment.