J. Percy Page
J. Percy Page was the founder, coach and advisor to the Edmonton Commercial Graduates Basketball Club from 1915 to 1940. In all 25 years of coaching the Grads, he missed only three games. His dedication to the team, philosophy of disciplined behaviour and well-executed, but simple plays guided the Grads to 502 victories out of 522 games played. With an average of 96.2%, the Grads arguably remain one of the greatest teams in sports history. Mr. Page and the Grads travelled more than 125,000 miles, won 17 consecutive World Championships, and never lost a game at four Olympic Games.
The Grads won their first Canadian Senior Women's title in 1922, and never lost a Canadian championship, thereafter. In 1924, they entered international competitions and won the Underwood Trophy for 17 seasons. The Grads travelled to Olympic Games in Paris, 1924; Amsterdam, 1928; Los Angeles, 1932; and Berlin, 1936. They won all 39 games played. On their 25th anniversary, the team disbanded.
Mr. Page earned respect from all of his players. As the head coach, he felt physical conditioning was important as was the way they presented themselves. He did not allow the ladies to smoke or drink, and they were not allowed to marry while with the team. He taught them to take the game of basketball seriously at all times and their actions reflected that.
1955 - Inducted into Canada's Sports Hall of Fame - Basketball Builder
1959 - 1966 - 8th Lieutenant Governor of Alberta
1984 - J. Percy Page High School in Edmonton opens and is named in his honour.
1989 - Edmonton Grads Park is opened in Edmonton - on the plaque it says...
"As coach, Mr. J. Percy Page did not encourage individual stars but stressed teamwork and built an entire working unit."
2005 - Alberta Centennial Salute for Sport and Recreation
2011 - Book is published - The Grads are Playing Tonight, by M. Ann Hall (The Story of the Edmonton Commercial Graduates Basketball Club.)