September 19, 2020 No Comments


Maple Leaf Gardens officially opened in November of 1931, with the hometown Maple Leafs losing to the Chicago Black Hawks in a close game.  Later that month, the facility hosted its first wrestling match, with the world champion Jim Londos as the headliner of the main event. It attracted over 15,000 people.


In 1946, the Maple Leaf Gardens played host to the first game, of what later became the National Basketball Association (NBA).  In that contest, the hometown Toronto Huskies played the Knickerbockers of New York City.  The franchise folded the next year, and it would be decades more before an NBA franchise returned to the city.

The Maple Leaf Gardens was also a leader in hockey safety, as it was the first arena to have plexiglass installed in the ends of the rink behind the goals.  A land mark concert took place on April 2, 1957, when Elvis Presley played one of his first concerts outside of the United States here.

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Written by WCAStaff