Back in 1919, the flu was a bigger deal than today. We can't hardly miss work for it now, but you could actually die because of it back then.
During the final round of the Stanley Cup that year, opposing the Montreal Canadiens and the Seattle Metropolitans, the Spanish flu stroke again. After decimating whole armies during the First World War, this particularly virulent type of influenza was a legitimate killer.
After 5 games, the score was 2-2. The fourth game was a tie and back in the days, they didn't go past one extra overtime so no team got the win. Both teams were set to battle for the best-of-five final on April 1st. However, the game and the series got canceled altogether.
The decision came after all but four of the Canadiens fell to the flu and were bedridden. They couldn't even field a complete roster on the ice! The cup remained in the East by rules of the days. However, hockey came second in everyone's mind two days later.
Veteran Habs player Joe Hall died on April 3rd of the influenza. He was a solid guy, hardworking and all. Thing is, he kept on going even after developing dangerous symptoms. In a way, he didn't list to his body's signals and he paid the ultimate price for it. The hockey world was devastated.
This little piece of trivia is tragically fascinating. Hopefully, it will never happen again.