|Some of Coach Bombay's tactics might have been borrowed from Godfrey Matheson|
McLaughlin met Godfrey Matheson in 1932, while traveling on a train from Minneapolis to Chicago. The two started talking and McLaughlin discovered that Matheson was from Winnipeg - the hometown of Chicago's star goalie Charlie Gardiner. On this train ride they got along very well and McLaughlin was impressed with Matheson's hockey knowledge. Despite Matheson not having any coaching experience or being able to skate, McLaughlin would remember his name if a position ever came up.
After an 8-7-6 start by Emil Iverson, Matheson was hired as the Hawks' interim head coach. He must have looked pretty goofy showing up to practice with elbow pads over street clothes, two buckets of pucks and no skates. He should have worn a helmet too, as he would be hit with a stick and knocked out having to be carried off ice on a stretcher.
The innovative Matheson replaced Gardiner in net with a stuffed dummy for practice in order to avoid injury to the his star goaltender. He also attempted an innovated coaching style using a whistle system. One whistle meant that player should shoot the puck, two whistles and the players were supposed to check their opponent. These practices would have been funny to watch with lots of player confusion and Charlie Gardiner sitting on the bench.
Godfrey Matheson had a unique vision of NHL offence. He had his small quick forwards throwing themselves at opposition defenders while dropping the puck to their defenceman. The theory was they would clear the way for the defencemen to have a clear shot at the net. Unfortunately, while the tiny forward was getting Chris Pronger'd into the ice, the unskilled Chicago defencemen were usually losing the puck and not getting shots off.
Matheson lasted two whole games, with the Blackhawks losing them both. Matheson was replaced by Tommy Gorman - who would lead Chicago to their first Stanley Cup victory in the 1933-34 season.
Godfrey Matheson is a perfect example of why you shouldn't hire a guy you just met on a train to coach your professional hockey team.