Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 07/04/14 at 04:38 PM ET
from Rory Boylen of The Hockey News,
We’re feeling the love for America this July 4 at THN. Editor in chief Jason Kay posted a top 10 ranking of the best American players of all-time and now we’ll recall some of the country’s top accomplishments.
Peak moments for USA Hockey are happening with greater frequency these days as the program expands and excels. But its accomplishments go back a long ways, with the defining moment happening in 1980. From 10, we countdown the best moments in American hockey history.
First American taken first overall in the NHL draft, Brian Lawton
Out of Mount St. Charles Academy, the Minnesota North Stars picked New Jersey’s Brian Lawton first overall in the 1983 draft. Lawton scored 112 goals and 266 points in only 483 career games with Minnesota, New York Rangers, Hartford, Quebec, Boston and San Jose, but his draft also included Pat LaFontaine going third overall and Tom Barrasso going fifth overall. This was the start of things to come.
1996 World Cup
If the 1980 miracle inspired a generation of American hockey players, the 1996 World Cup team inspired another. This group of all-stars wasn’t quite the underdogs the rag-tag collection of college kids was in 1980, but no one expected they’d come back from a one-game deficit to Canada. This tournament, formerly known as the Canada Cup, didn’t end with a single game, but a best-of-three series. Canada won Game 1, but the Americans won the next two in Montreal to claim the championship. Brett Hull and Mike Richter starred for the Americans, who stole a win from Canada on Canadian soil and set up the Red, White and Blue for success in the next decade.
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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.
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