Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Paul Hunter of the Toronto Star,
Of the NHL’s 52 top all-time, regular-season point producers, 17 have never sipped champagne from Lord Stanley’s mug. More than 40 of the players inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame – including the likes of Mike Gartner, Darryl Sittler, Brad Park, Rod Gilbert and Pat LaFontaine – are not on the game’s most famous trophy.
They could skate rings around lesser players but have no rings to prove it.
Ullman made it to five Stanley Cup finals but never won. It was his team that was at the wrong end of Bobby Baun’s famous overtime goal on a broken ankle, his Red Wings were just a foil in some of hockey’s greatest lore.
from John McGourty of NHL.com,
But a dynasty was forming in Detroit, as the Red Wings won the Stanley Cup in 1950 and four Stanley Cups in six years. This run coincided with Howe reaching physical maturity.
Howe was 6-foot, 205 pounds, one of the larger players in the NHL at that time. He was tall and lean with a farmer’s hard muscles. He came from utter poverty and he wouldn’t let anyone compromise his career on the ice.
Howe one-punched Maurice “Rocket” Richard to the ice early in his career and he crushed Bobby Orr late in his career. Howe was uncanny. He could deliver immediate, devastating retribution or he could let a slight go unpunished so long that the perpetrator forgot about it, until he found himself flat on his back when Howe found a situation that wouldn’t compromise his team’s chance of winning.
more with a photo gallery….
Gordie Howe from a Q & A in the Detroit Free Press,
“I always said I believed in religious hockey, and that it is better to give than to receive. I remember one guy said he tried to hit me all game but all he saw was tape. When I was playing, a coach might say, “You don’t like so and so?” And I’d say, “I don’t like any of them out there. When the game’s over, I like a lot of them, but on the ice is not a place to be liking people.”
from Joe Pelletier’s Greatest Hockey Legends,
March 21st, 1991. Quebec’s Ron Tugnutt stopped 70 Bruins shots, including 12 in overtime, to give the Nordiques a 3-3 tie at Boston.
The Bruins’ 73 shots were 10 short of the NHL record set by Boston in a 1941 game against Chicago. Ray Bourque set a NHL single game record with 19 shots himself!
Tugnutt’s performance was so impressive even some of the Bruins’ players skated over to congratulate him.
Watch the video highlights…
from Tim Wharnsby of the Globe and Mail,
You read correctly: the boyish Bobby Orr turns 60 today, but the brilliant defenceman of yesteryear will not be in attendance at the TD Banknorth Garden. Instead, Orr will remain at his winter home in Jupiter, Fla., and quietly celebrate his milestone birthday with his wife, Peggy, and his family and friends.
“He probably doesn’t want to acknowledge it,” Harry Sinden, Orr’s first coach with the Bruins and later his general manager, said jokingly.
Even though Orr hasn’t lived in Canada for more than 40 years, since he first suited up for the Bruins in 1966, he remains as visible as any hockey player in this country, including Wayne Gretzky, because of his commercials for General Motors and MasterCard and work for Chevrolet’s Safe & Fun Hockey program to help young players develop positive values while learning the game’s fundamentals.
from the Vancouver Sun,
In a feat unsurpassed by any athlete in any sport, Gordie Howe finished in the top five in scoring for 20 straight seasons.
Howe was offered the job as the first head coach of the New York Islanders in 1972. He declined.
read on for 30 facts about Gordie…
from Marty Henwood of Hockey.com,
Call me sentimental, a purist or just plain old, but there are times when I just miss those grand old ladies.
Some of you may remember them, others probably choose to say good riddance in an era of luxury boxes and eight-sided scoreboards.
Maple Leaf Gardens. Montreal Forum. Boston Garden. Chicago Stadium. The Olympia. The Spectrum.
Buildings with character. With memories. With ghosts.
fro Van Oler via ChicagoBlackhawks.com,
Spend enough time at the United Center watching the Blackhawks and you’ll inevitably hear someone comment that this season’s game-night excitement and buzz reminds them of the days when “the Blackhawks owned this town, I tell ya! You couldn’t get a ticket unless it was left to you in somebody’s will!”
With Stan Mikita and Bobby Hull returning the UC tonight, it’s useful to look back at their time with the Blackhawks to see if there’s evidence that the team was, in fact, the best in town.
from Dennis Kane at the Powell River Peak,
Doug Harvey Jr. is 57 years old now, is proud of his dad, and was happy to talk about him. What was it like, I asked, being the son of such a star? “It was probably just like you and your dad,” he said, “We were just a family like everyone else. Kids at school didn’t treat me any different, and when I played hockey, there were no names on the sweaters, so no one gave me a hard time at the rink.
“I guess one thing that might be different was that players would come over to the house quite often—Dickie Moore, Jean Beliveau, Jacques Plante, the Rocket a few times. When dad was building our house, most of the team helped him.”
from John Rolfe at Sports Illustrated,
Championship banners, retired numbers, and stirring reunions are all well and good. It can be great fun to revisit the glories of the past. Can be. But when a title drought or stretch of losing drags on well into the next generation, or beyond, it can be just plain depressing.
Case in point: Last Sunday, the New York Islanders again rolled out the members of their early ‘80s dynasty, this time to commemorate The Core of the Four—the 17 players whose names appeared on all four Stanley Cups they won from 1980 through 1983.
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.
Email Paul anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org