On this day in 1931, the first-ever game was played at Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto. The Maple Leafs played host to the Chicago Blackhawks, who defeated the home team by a score of 2-1.
Construction of the “Gardens” started in May 1931 and was completed in five months and two weeks during the depths of the Great Depression. Hoisting engineers working on the project were paid $1 per hour and 20 per cent of that was in Maple Leaf Gardens Limited shares.
After their last game, February 13, 1999 (fittingly against Chicago), the Maple Leafs moved into Air Canada Centre (now known as Scotiabank Arena). The following November, the Gardens closed to the public, but a complete revitalization was completed in 2012.
Heritage Toronto presented a plaque on November 13, 2013, so that future generations will understand the vital place Maple Leaf Gardens has held in Toronto.