Picture
Kassian, Hodgson, Buffalo, Vancouver, Vancouver Buffalo?!?!
Hello Everyone!!  How are you?  Few days off and a friend suggested I use this moment for a "Great Moment in the 2011-12 season."  My friend being probably the biggest Buffalo fan in Vancouver and possibly the biggest Buffalo fan ever I couldn't not talk about it.  The Buffalo Sabers and the Vancouver Canucks stole the show at trade deadline in what was shaping up to be a rather slow day went out with a bang.  Trading hockey players is like trading hockey cards.  We have all seen guy friends of ours talk about trading hockey cards and who they got.  While trading NHL players is the exact same thing.  You don't always trade goalie for goalie but rather value for value and are you letting go of something your club can live without and gaining something your club is missing.  Teams can trade how ever many times and how ever many players they want during the season up until the deadline at the end of February.  After that it is set and nothing happens till after the Stanley Cup playoffs end.  A trade involves getting players you want but also taking on contracts (number of years on the contract and how much the player is getting paid) it all goes toward a cap.  A hockey club can only spend so much money.  If they go over, they get a fine.  You are on a budget of $100 buying groceries for the week, NHL teams have to build a hockey club of 23 players for 70.2 million a year.  They also have to spend at least 54.2 million or they get fined.  So when you hear the term "cap space" that is what they are talking about.  Enough about what trading is let's talk about who got traded!!

Picture
Zach Kassian at practice in Van City
The dealine for trading this year was 3:00pm on the west.  I believe there had been about 15 trades done and nothing really stirred the pot until TSN announced there was one more trade in the works and they would keep viewers updated.  Then they announced the Buffalo Sabres and Vancouver Canucks were talking.  It was then announced that Zach Kassian was now a Vancouver Canuck but they didn't announce who was leaving Vancouver.  Vancouver wanted to know, who is Zach Kassian?  Zach fit the bill for everything Vancouver wanted.  Vancouver wanted a physical power forward, Zach is 6'3", 214 pounds and from Windsor, Ontario.  Do I need to say anything more?  Drafted in 2009 13th overall by Buffalo, Zach played 27 games with Buffalo before getting on a flight to Vancouver.  The youngest of 4 children and growing up without his Dad after he passed away from a heart attack when Zach was 8.  Zach has that edge, nothing to lose personality plus boat loads of skill and talent he is beyond fun to watch on the ice.  Somewhat of what I call a vintage hockey player Zach can often be found without his fake tooth in, which is a true hockey smile.  The trade also included Montreal native Marc-Andre Gragnani.  The defenceman was drafted in 2005 by Buffalo.  Gragnani spent most of his time going between the NHL and AHL.  He played in 14 games for the Canucks in the regular season. 

Picture
Cutie #5 Marc-Andre Gragnani during a shift in Vancouver
Picture
Kassian and his 1st goal as a Canuck againest his teammate the week prior Ryan Miller.
Picture
Buffalo's #19 Cody Hodgson!
Then about 15 minutes after people found out Kassian was now a Canuck they learned Cody Hodgson was a Sabre.  Wow, wow, wow.  Fans in Vancouver heart's sank.  The rookie sensation with his ups and downs for the last few years was gone.  Cody was drafted 10th overall in 2008.  The Toronto, Ontario native who stands 6'0" and weights 185 pounds and his right hand shot were off to the east coast.  After Vancouver had time to let it sink in, the trade made perfect sense.  Cody didn't break into the NHL the year he was drafted.  He played for the Manitoba Moose and was a call up for 8 games in the 2010-2011 season.  In 2011-12 season he got a permanent spot on the Canucks roster.  The 3rd line center although very good at what he does what almost to pretty so to speak to be in that spot.  With Henrik Sedin manning the center position on the 1st line for Vancouver and Ryan Kesler on the 2nd line what Vancouver needed was a physical, dirty player for the 3rd line.  Vancouver had picked up Samuel Pahlsson earlier in the day who was a veteran player and happened to be a center.  With faceoff hot shot Manny Mahlorta able to play on the 3rd or 4th line or having Max Lapierre able to center the 4th line the "grinders" were manning the bottom 1/2 of the front end.  Where did Cody fit?  Now you get the picture.  Cody fit right into the perfect spot with the Buffalo Sabres.  Cody would get more ice time, be able to move up the ranks faster (not waiting for H. Sedin or Kesler to retire) and would be a very valuable asset to a team who is looking at a great Stanley Cup run in the next 5 years or so.  It wasn't that Cody was doing poorly with the Canucks he had scored 16 goals and 17 assists in 63 games, 2 of which were against big bad Timmy Thomas of the Boston Bruins!!  Cody scored 3 goals and assisted 5 in 20 games with the Sabers.  Cody actually played 83 games last season!  Teams play 82 but Buffalo's schedule meant Cody had to lace up for an extra.  While Vancouver got Gragnani in the trade, Buffalo got Alex Sulzer.  The handsome German only got to play 12 games with the Canucks and only registered 1 assist.  His hard work and talent was getting pushed to the sidelines with the stacked back end the Canucks were building.  With the trade to Buffalo Sulzer played 15 games and scored 3 goals and assisted 5 others.  Sulzer also got to play along side German Olympic teammate and former Canuck Christian Ehrhoff.  It was a match made in hockey heaven.  In the end with this wild wacky trade between expansion cousins (the Vancouver Canucks and the Buffalo Sabers both joined the NHL in 1970) both teams got what they were looking for.  Vancouver got some talent and toughness and Buffalo got some talent and gracefulness.  And that is just another great moment in the 2011-2012 season and quite the ending to the 2012 Trade Deadline!!  Enjoy video of Hodgson and Kassian scoring for former teams and current teams and Gragnani and Sulzer scoring as well.  Enjoy X

Picture
The uber handsome German Alex Sulzer
Picture
Cody doing his thing on the ice. The Rookie is a sensation!!
Picture
Burrows, Lapierre and Luongo having conservation with former teammate Hodgson.
 
 
Picture
Sam Gagner hockey headshot
Hello Everyone!  Like I said before, Hockey records either take a whole year to break, a particular number of games or just one game.  One of those games came on February 2nd 2012.  No record was broken but a Wayne Gretzky record was tied.  On February 2nd 2012 Rexall Place turned into the Sam Gagner Show.  The Edmonton Oilers took on the Chicago Blackhawks.  The Blackhawks started out strong but then during the 2nd period Edmonton took over.  Sam Gagner scored 4 goals and assisted 4 others.  Below is every Edmonton goal scored that night.  It might not seem like a big deal what Gagner did that night but look at it this way.  Gagner tied a franchise record set by two players, Wayne Gretzky and Paul Coffey with his 8 points.  The only player to ever score more was former Toronto Maple Leaf Darryl Sittler.  Who on February 7th 1976 recorded a ten point night in a 11-4 win over the Boston Bruins.  Sittler's 10 points remains an NHL record.  The last time 8 points was scored in a game was by former Pittsburgh Penguin Captain Mario Lemieux who did it on April 25th 1989.  It also didn't take Gagner the 60 minutes to collect the 8 points, he did it the span of 17 minutes and 28 seconds!
1st goal Taylor Hall, assisted by Sam Gagner
2nd goal Sam Gagner assisted by Jordan Eberle and Andy Sutton
3rd goal Ryan Whitney assisted by Sam Gagner on the power play
4th goal Sam Gagner assisted by Ryan Whitney and Jordan Eberle
5h goal Cam Baker assisted by Andy Sutton and Sam Gagner
6th goal Sam Gagner assisted by Taylor Hall and Corey Potter
7th goal Sam Gagner assisted by Jordan Eberle and Taylor Hall
8th goal Jordan Eberle assisted by Sam Gagner and Taylor Hall

Now that we have that out of the way let's get a little dirt on who Sam Gagner is.  Drafted by Edmonton in 2007, Sam went in the 1st round chosen 6th overall.  He wears #89 perhaps a nod to the year he was born, August 10th 1989.  Sam stands 5'11" and weight 195 pounds.  The right shooter who is a center was born in London, Ontario.  Gagner has played 366 games in the NHL and scored 77 goals while assisting 143 others. Perhaps next year Gagner could get 9 points in a single game?  Oddly enough no NHL player in history has recorded 9 points.  I bet one of Sam Gagner's biggest memories of the night may be the flood of text messages he received saying congrats but the biggest of all?  The text he got from The Great One Wayne Gretzky simply saying "Congrats WG".  I was saving the Sam Gagner moment for later but with how popular the Kids Line post was I couldn't resist.  Enjoy X

Picture
Puck in the net? I think so! Gagner #89 scores!
Picture
Jordan Eberle (left) Sam Gagner (center) and Taylor Hall (right) laugh on the bench at what is happening in Rexall Place. Sam Gagner is touching every puck to hit the back of the Chicago net!
Picture
With moments like an 8 point night so few and far far between the only thing Gagner can do is simply enjoy it.
Picture
Gagner posing with his hat trick puck and 8th point puck. Those I am sure will be finding a picture frame or wall unit for view in Gagner's apartment.
Because the Kids Line post a few days back was such a big hit and nobody can take away the Edmonton dynasty history that was or perhaps the Edmonton dynasty that is just around the corner already brewing I have included this video.  I stumbled across it while researching Sam Gagner.  It is about Jordan Eberle and the fact I forgot to mention, his 1st NHL goal was an absolute beauty.  Even Sidney Crosby said "Wow" The whole video is a joke but those Oilers are perhaps one of the funniest teams in the league!  Enjoy X
 
 
Picture
The Kids Line keepin their eyes on the ice.
Every once and a while a few young kids come along and really shake up the game.  Or a team.  This year one of those occasions was the Edmonton Oilers and what became known as simply "The KIDS Line."  The line includes Jordan Eberle, Taylor Hall and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins.  If you combine their ages they equal 62!!  The average age is 20.6 between them.  One still can't legally have a beer in most US states, he actually couldn't have a beer in most Canadians provinces till after this season ended.  Eberle plays right wing, Hall plays left wing and Nugent-Hopkins plays center.  Between the 3 of them last season in a combined total they got 181 points.  79 goals and 102 assists.  Neither one of these guys played all 82 games last season.  Eberle played 78, Hall 61 and Nugent-Hopkins 62.  201 games between them and 181 points!  Not to shabby for 3 young guys who only have 5 years of NHL experience between the 3 of them.  Let's take a closer look at Hallsy, Ebs and Nuge as they are affectionately called by teammates.

Picture
It doesn't matter what level of hockey Eberle makes it to, he always carries his hockey bag! Of course a true Canadian boy can't forget the Tim Horton's for breakfast?!?!
Picture
#14 scoring a tying goal!
Jordan Eberle the veteran Oiler on the Kids line is 22 years old.  Born on May 15th 1990 in Regina, Saskatchewan, Eberle was drafted by Edmonton in 2008 in the 1st round, 22nd overall.  He wears the #14, stands 5'11" (he credits his Mum for his height) and weights 184 pounds.  Eberle shoots left and has scored 52 goals at the NHL level and assisted 67 others.  Even if you aren't an Oiler fan you can't get away from Jordan Eberle.  He has represented his country Canada at numerous international hockey tournaments.  Eberle won Gold in 2009 and Silver in 2010 at the World Junior Championships, Gold at the IIHF World U18 Championships in 2008 and Bronze at Canada's Winter Games in 2007 when he competed for Alberta.  Ladies, the one and only Jordan Eberle.  Below I have included a few Eberle moments.  Apparently he likes to score with .5 left on the clock and is a nightmare in the shootout!

Picture
Casual Taylor Hall. Not only is the Kids Line talented they are oh so cute!
Picture
Hallsy lookin handsome in the Team Canada jersey!
Taylor Hall may be the middle child of the line but I don't sense any weird cries for attention.  Born November 14th 1991 in Calgary, Alberta.  Hall wears the #4 stands 6'1 and weights 194.  He shoots left and has recorded 49 goals and 46 assists in 126 games between 2 season with the Edmonton Oilers.  After being drafted 1st overall by the Edmonton Oilers in 2010, Hall has proved his weight in gold.  Like his buddy Eberle, Hall has also put on the wonderful Team Canada jersey at numerous international tournaments.  In 2008 alone Hall won Gold at the World U-17 Hockey Challenge, Gold again at the IIHF World U18 Championships and Gold again at the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament.  And finally in 2010 Hall won Silver with Team Canada at the IIHF World U20 Championships.  May I introduce the one and only Taylor Hall!  Below I have included video of Hallsy 1st career hat trick and a natural one at that plus his buddy Eberle scored a tying goal for Team Canada while Hall was on the ice.  What Fun!

Picture
Hallsy on the left and Eberle on the right during the medals ceremony at the World U20 Championships 2010.
Picture
BC Boy Ryan Nugent Hopkins the day he was drafted into the NHL!
Picture
Fun and Games representing Canada!
Our 3rd and final Kid is truly a kid.  When most 18 year olds are drafted they play in the preseason but are sent down to the AHL for a year or two to fine tune their skills.  Or if they stay at the NHL level their minutes are few and they don't make headlines or break records.  Not the case for Ryan Nugent-Hopkins who in his Rookie year broke a Wayne Gretzky Record plus made headlines in papers and highlights on TV.  Ryan Nugent-Hopkins was born on April 12th 1993 in Burnaby, British Columbia.  He wears #93, stands 6'1" and weights 175 pounds.  Drafted by the Edmonton Oilers 1st overall in the 2011 draft, Nugent-Hopkins is worth his weight in gold just like Eberle and Hall.  With 18 goals and 34 assists in 62 games the Nuge is up for Rookie of the Year award at the NHL awards. Also having represented his country wearing the famous Team Canada jersey Nuge won Gold at the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament in 2010 and also played in the IIHF World championships this year where Canada didn't get on the podium.  Nuge's 1st goal in the NHL in his 1st game on October 9th 2011 against the Pittsburgh Penguins and it was the tying goal at that and Edmonton won in a shootout.  His 1st career hat trick came on October 15th 2011 against the Vancoouver Canucks a team Nuge grew up watching in Burnaby.  The Oilers didn't end up beating the Canucks that night but Nugent-Hopkins did SMASH a nearly 32 year old record!!  And not only did he break a record he broke a Gretzky record!  Ryan Nugent-Hopkins recorded his first career hat trick in only his 3rd NHL game.  It took Gretzky 50 NHL games and until February 1st 1980 to get his 1st career hat trick.  But hockey records can be tricky.  Although Nuge broke a Gretzky record he is not the youngest NHL to ever record a hat trick.  Jordan Staal of the Pittsburgh Penguins recorded his 1st NHL hat trick when he was 18 years and 153 days.  Nuge was 18 years and 187 days when he got his.  Ladies...the Rookie Sensation from the Kids Line Ryan Nugent-Hopkins!  

Picture
The Kids devising a plan to score!!
 
 
Picture
The moment Stamkos had his 60th!!
There are a ton of hockey records set.  There are a ton to be broken every year.  Some records no hockey players get close to for years and some are just flat out untouchable.  Example: Wayne Gretzky's 2,857 points  collected during his career.  The next highest on the list is Mark Messier who has 1,887.  Watching a hockey record get broken is something you have to be patient for.  You either watch it happen over the course of a game or you have to watch it unfold over an entire season.  One of the best records to watch this year was Steven Stamkos hit 60 goals in a single season.  Stamkos is not the 1st player to do this and yes other players have scored more goals in a single season.  It is a rarity though.  Only Alex Ovechkin has scored 60 plus goals since the lockout.  Ovechkin scored 65 goals in the 2007/08 season.  Only 20 players in NHL history total have scored 60 plus goals in a single season. Before we get into more detail about Stamkos's goals let's find out who Steven Stamkos is.  He wears the #91.  Stands 6'1" and weights 188 pounds.  Born on February 7th 1990 in Markham Ontario, Stamkos was drafted 1st overall in the 1st round in 2008 by the Tampa Lightning.  Stamkos's name now goes on a list with some greats that include:
Wayne Gretzky with 92 goals in the 1981-1982 season (Edmonton Oilers)
Wayne Gretzky again with 87 goals in the 1983-1984 season (Edmonton Oilers)
Brett Hull with 86 goals in the 1990-1991 season (St. Louis Blues)
Mario Lemieux with 85 goals in the 1988-1989 season (Pittsburgh Penguins)
Alexander Mogilny with 76 goals in the 1992-1993 season (Buffalo Sabres)
Teemu Selanne with 76 goals in the 1992-1993 season (Rookie year with the Winnipeg Jets)
Steve Yzerman with 65 goals in the 1988-1989 season (Detroit Red Wings) would have had some kind words for Stamkos.  Yzerman is the GM for Tampa Bay.
The only Canuck to ever hit the mark was Pavel Bure who accomplished the feat twice with 60 goal seasons back to back in 1992-1993 and 1993-1994.

Picture
A true shooter doing what he does, shooting.
Not only did Stamkos get 60 goals he also set a personal career high with 97 points.  Adding 37 assists to the list finishing 2nd in the points race this year behind Pittsburgh Penguin Evgeni Malkin who had 50 goals and 59 assits for 109 points total.  Let's take a closer look at what Stamkos's year looked like:
36 goals were scored at home, 24 were scored away
6 goals were against the Florida Panthers while he scored 5 apiece against the Boston Bruins, Carolina Hurricane and Washington Capitals
The most popular scoring spot was the top right part of the net with 19 goals being scored there while the bottom right was the least popular only 2 goals going that way total.
Stamkos doesn't just score on a Tampa Bay power play.  12 goals were scored on the power play but 44 were on even strengh 5 on 5 and 4 goals were scored 4 on 4.
Beware of Stamkos's wrist shot.  32 goals were scored on the wrist shot, 1 on a wraparound, 6 were tipped in, 8 on the slap shot and snap shot and 5 on the backhand.
5 of the goals  were game winning overtime goals.  21 goals were scored in each the 2nd and 3rd periods and 13 were scored in the 1st period.
Stamkos recorded 2 hat tricks during the run, eleven 2 goal games and a crazy 12 game winning goals scored total breaking his own team record set in 2010-2011 season with 8.
Stamkos's wing man Martin St. Louis assisted 20 of the goals, Teddy Purcell assisted 17 and Ryan Malone assisted 11.  4 of Stamkos's goals were unassisted.
And finally this is the 2nd time Stamkos will be taking home the Maurice "Rocket" Richard Trophy.  The 1st time was in 2009-2010 but he was the co winner and shared the honour with the one and only Sidney Crosby.  This year 2011-2012 Stamkos gets to take it home all on his own.
Are you dizzy yet?  I am.  But wow what a year.  Congrats Steven Stamkos!
Picture
Relaxed Stamkos talking to press. Cute, right!
Tomorrow check back for another wild moment from the 2011-2012 season.  This could include anything from the Winnipeg Jets to Boston vs Vancouver to the Detroit Red Wings to the Buffalo Sabres!!!!!!!!  Enjoy X
 
 
Picture
Hockey Head Shot #3 Kevin Bieksa!
Every NHL team has a few players with a larger fan base then the rest of the team.  This usually isn't for nothing.  Case in point #3 Kevin Bieksa of the Vancouver Canucks.  Now I didn't just pick a Canuck moment because they are my #1 team but this moment was fun.  First lets get a little info on Mr. Bieksa.  Born in Grimsby, Ontario, June 16th 1981.  Bieksa celebrated his 31st birthday over the weekend.  Drafted by the Vancouver Canucks in 2001, in the 5th round, 151st overall.  Bieksa has proven over and over again he is a reliable D-Man, especially along side his mainstay D-Man partner Dan Hamhuis.  We don't have to play any games here, Bieksa is a handsome man with quite the female following in Vancouver.  You can often find women sporting Bieksa's #3 at games.  A staple in the Canucks lineup since the 2005-2006 season, Bieksa can be a thorn in any opponent's side.  He scored the double OT goal during Game 5 of the Western Conference Finals in 2011 against the San Jose Sharks to send the Canucks to the Stanley Cup Finals for the 1st time since 1994.  With a willingness to drop his gloves and defend players on his team and score goals Bieksa gets the 1st nod in a series of 10 Moments with the old "Dive and safe then shoot and score!"  This great moment happened on February 4th 2012 against the Colorado Avalanche.  Vancouver's Ryan Kesler scored the opening goal, Colorado followed with 2 goals to lead all the way until the end of 3rd when Bieksa worked his magic!  I have also included the shootout video with Mason Raymond's wild 5 hole winner.  Plus the infamous Alain Vigneault laugh fest from a game vs the Dallas Stars when Star's forward #38 Vernon Fiddler decided to give his best Bieksa impression a try. And for nostalgic sake the Bieksa goal from Game 5 of the Western Conference Finals 2011! Enjoy X

Picture
This photo was taken after a brawl in Chicago at the United Center. Bieksa is leaving the ice while silencing the home crowd after a 4-0 win for Vancouver!!
Picture
Bieksa and his baby girl. This moment right here may be why so many ladies love this man?!
Stay tuned for 9 more great moments from the regular season including more Canuck moments, Detroit Red Wings moments, Tampa Bay moments, Dallas Star moments and everything in between! 
And don't forget the Scotiabank Marathon is this Sunday, June 24th.  Enter here http://canucksautism.ca/get-involved/scotiabank-half-marathon-and-5k-charity-challenge/.
 
 
Picture
Los Angeles is #1!
It is OVER!  The Los Angeles Kings after 45 years of trying have won the Stanley Cup!  I will wrap this up quick so you can enjoy the photos and video.  The 1st goal of the game came with 11 minutes gone in the 1st period.  Steve Bernier took a questionable 5 minute boarding penalty and Los Angeles took advantage and scored 3 goals in 4 minutes.  In true leader captain fashion Dustin Brown scored the opening goal of the game. Jeff Carter scored the 2nd and Trevor Lewis scored the 3rd.  The hit was definitely questionable and one of the biggest factors would be that seconds before Jarret Stoll hit Stephen Gionta from behind in the same fashion and no call. Jeff Carter scored again early in the 2nd period and LA had a 4-0 lead.  Adam Henrique scored at the tail end of the period and got New Jersey on the board but it wasn't enough.  Trevor Lewis scored again for his Kings and Matt Greene scored unassisted for a 6-1 final!  Wow!  It was a dirty game as far as penalties go.  LA only took 3 penalties the whole game while New Jersey took 9 including a 5 minute major, misconducts and game misconducts.  Jonathan Quick faced 18 shots and stopped 17 of them.  Martin Brodeur faced 24 and stopped 19 of them.  One LA goal was scored on an empty net.  All in all in was a great series to watch and Game 6 was a great great game.  LA after 45 years, joining the NHL in the expansion finally gets to celebrate!  Congratulations Los Angeles Kings!  The 2012 Stanley Cup champs!  And PS if there is only one video you watch here today, watch the one with Jonathan Quick and Martin Brodeur shaking hands.  Hockey is a fast, physical sport but at the end of the day the players, especially goalies, respect each other and they tell each other that!

Picture
Jonathan Quick couldn't hold back the second he knew he was a Stanley Cup champ!
Picture
My favorite Drew Doughty rushes to Quick and the 2 celebrate a well fought battle by winning the ultimate prize!
Picture
BC Boy Colin Fraser can't get his gloves off as fast as good Canadian boy Drew Doughty to hug Quick!
Picture
Following Tradition the Captain of the team always receives the Cup for his team. The Captain will skate around with the Cup and then hand it off to his teammates but not before kissing it! Stanley Cup Captain Dustin Brown!
Picture
Anze Kopitar has his moment with the Cup!
Picture
Jonathan Quick couldn't be more deserving.
Picture
Head Coach Darryl Sutter with the Cup. I hope that Terry Murray gets a moment with the cup. Sutter may have gotten them through part of the regular season and the playoffs but Murray was a big part of creating the team over the last 4 years.
Picture
After holding the Cup, Captain Dustin Brown held his son. Clearly someone is going to have to explain to this little boy one day exactly what his Dad did.
Picture
Possibly the 2nd best traditional in hockey besides the handshakes, the "drink beer from the cup in the locker room while champagne is flowing freely!"
Send in any suggestions you have for the top 10 playoff moments during the 2012 run!  Any team, any round!  Thank you and enjoy X
 
 
Picture
New Jersey WINS! New Jersey WINS!
We have a series Ladies and Gentlemen!  Hello everyone!  What an exciting Saturday night in the NHL it was.  With the Game 4 win at the Staples Center by the New Jersey Devils it was an exciting exciting Game 5 in Newark, New Jersey.  In the Los Angeles Kings amazing Stanley Cup run they have lost three game 4s.  They lost to the Vancouver Canucks in Game 4, beat St. Louis in Game 4 (swept that team) and lost to the Phoeniox Coyotes in Round 3 game 4.  Against Vancouver, LA came back to win game 5 and end the series.  The same fate happened to the Phoenix Coyotes and both games ended in OT.  But New Jersey snapped that and won game 5 forcing a game 6!  This will be the first time in the Kings run they will have a game 6 to play.  New Jersey Captain and oh so handsome Zach Parise scored the opening goal of the game with 12:45 gone in the 1st period.  LA in true fashion came back with a goal by Justin Williams early in the 2nd.  But it wasn't over yet.  Bryce Salvador scored the Game Winning Goal less then 6 minutes after the Williams goal and New Jersey was able to hang onto their lead, win the game and  force game 6!  That is what I am talking about!  One interesting part of this game would have to be Jonathan Quick.  The netminder has been more then phenomenal during this wild ride the Kings have been on.  Right now his save percentage is .946!  But Quick let in 2 goals on only 19 shots Saturday night?  Brodeur on the other hand has a .922 save percentage and let in one goal on 26 shots.  Really nobody knows what to expect in Game 6.  This is the 1st time the Kings will be playing a Game 6 in the playoffs and the Devils bumped out New York in Round 3 in 6 games (they won games 2, 4, 5 and 6 in that series) They bumped out Philadelphia in 5 games in Round 2 (they lost game 1 and won games 2, 3, 4, and 5) and in the 1st round they bumped out Florida in 7 game winning games 1, 4, 6 and 7.  You could argue that New Jersey is the King of comebacks in the Stanley Cup playoffs.  With the uncharted territory of a Game 6 for the Kings and the confidence boost and comebacks the Devils have made in the playoffs it is really any team's game.  The Stanley Cup will be in the building again in case Los Angeles wins but a game 7 would be great to watch!  Below find video of the goals scored Saturday night and photos.  Because I openly admit I have a weakness for a handsome man in a suit, I have posted photos of the players arriving to the game!  Plus a few celebrities!  Enjoy X

Picture
New Jersey Captain and oh so handsome Zach Parise arriving to play Game 5 and score the opening goal of the game!
Picture
One of my personal favorite hockey players Drew Doughty! An incredibly talented D-Man Doughty won the Gold Medal with Team Canada at the Vancouver 2010 Olympics and was the last player picked for the team!
Picture
Adam Henrique on the left and Dainuis Zubrus arrive to play game 5. Handsome tall men in suits, does it get any better?
Picture
They say goalies are a special breed?! You would have to be to choose a profession where grown men on skates shoot pucks at you. Sometimes at speeds of 140kms an hour! Jonathan Quick arrives at Prudential Center on Saturday with his head phones on getting into his zone.
Picture
Veteran netminder and 3 time Stanley Cup champ Martin Brodeur was all smiles arriving for Game 5. This man can handle pressure like nobody else. It is just rollin off his shoulders.
Picture
Matthew Perry is clearly a Kings fan and I believe New Jersey just scored??
Picture
Coolest Mum ever Linda Evangelista watches Game 5 his her uber cute son. I am very familiar with this. My son is about the same age and loves loves loves a hockey game live!
Picture
God Bless a hockey fan!
 
 
Picture
Opening face off Game 4 Final Series
Alright, it isn't that the Hollywood story "Kings bring the Stanley Cup to Hollywood" is over but it will take at least 5 games now.  For the 3rd time in the Kings amazing run they lost.  And for the 3rd time again it was during game 4.  This was a very interesting game to watch.  The Kings were nervous and the Devils didn't want to lose.  It made for interesting chemistry on the ice.  The 1st and 2nd period were completely scoreless.  Then the 3rd period saw a lot of goals in a short period of time.  With 8 minutes gone in the 3rd period Devil Patrik Elias scored and for the first time in the entire series New Jersey had the scoring lead.  It was short lived, for 1:02 total because King Drew Doughty scored his 4th goal of the playoffs and it was a tie game.  Enter Adam Henrique who scores when you need him to.  Henrique got his team in the lead again with a goal less then 7 minutes after Doughty's.  King Willie Mitchell took a penalty late in the period with less then 3 minutes left to go, giving the Devils some breathing room with the power play.  Devils were not able to score on the power play and as soon as Mitchell was out of the sin bin Jonathan Quick was pulled from his net and LA had 6 attackers on the ice.  It didn't work in the Kings favor, a goal by Ilya Kovalchuk sealed the deal, 3-1 final and the teams head back to New Jersey for game 5 Saturday!   Martin Brodeur made 21 saves while Jonathan Quick made 21 as well.  If the Kings had won this game it would have been the 21st time in NHL history a team swept the Finals.  If this is the start of New Jersey's comeback it will only be the 2nd time in NHL history a team has come back from a 3-0 deficit in the final series.  Below check out some photos and videos from the game last night and also keep scrolling down for a quick history lesson on which team is the only team in NHL history to come back from the 3-0 deficit.  

Picture
STOPPED BY BRODEUR!
Picture
Rumor has it during off season Adam Henrique heads back to his family's tobacco farm. Henrique claims he doesn't enjoy the work but with this game winning goal last night, Henrique has cut his time down on the farm by 3 days!
Picture
Odds are still in Hollywood's favor for winning the Cup!
Picture
Champion Syl Apps in 1942!
If the New Jersey Devils are going to make a crazy come back they should take a page from the 1942 Stanley Cup winning Toronto Maple Leafs.  It was the Spring of 1942 back when hockey consisted of only 6 teams (the Original 6 Fun Fact is in Episode 1 of Hockey Talk with Courtney)  The Toronto Maple Leafs were up against the Detroit Red Wings.  In games 1, 2, and 3 the Detroit Red Wings won. In game 4 the Maple Leafs won.  Then 5, 6 and 7 also went to the Leafs!  There were a few standout players in the series.  Leaf Captain Syl Apps played 13 games, scored 5 goals assisted 9 others, and had only 2 penalty minutes.  Sweeney Schriner also played 13 games, scored 6 goals, assisted 3 and 10 penalty minutes.  They youngest player on the team was Gaye Stewart who was 18 at the time born June 28th 1923 and played in only 1 game.  John McCreedy was the eldest on the team born March 23rd 1911.  Turk Broda won 8 games and lost 5 during the playoffs.  The team's head coach was Hap Day.  The Maple Leafs beat Detroit 4-3 in the finals series and they beat the New York Rangers 4-2 in the semi finals.  The winning goal for the final series was by Pete Langelle at 9:48 in the 3rd. Want to know how every game ended?
                     Game 1: 3-2 Detroit
                                                                                   Game 2: 4-2 Detroit
                                                                                   Game 3: 5-2 Detroit
                                                                                   Game 4: 4-3 Toronto
                                                                                   Game 5: 9-3 Toronto
                                                                                   Game 6: 3-0 Toronto
                                                                                   Game 7: 3-1 Toronto


Picture
Stanley Cup winning goalie (Walter) Turk Broda. Broda was born on May 15th 1914. Broda went 27-18-3 in the season with a 2.76 goals against average that year. Borda was 27 when he won this cup and only 5'9 feet tall!
Picture
The Maple Leas celebrating a goal!
Picture
Another picture from the series. Notice how signatures have changed? You can actually read who's name is who's!
Based on history it can be done.  The New Jersey Devils are not out of the running yet.  If anything they are looking good.  The teams head back to New Jersey.  Now the skaters for the Devils know they can go high on Quick and score.  Martin Brodeur knows he can stop the pucks Kopitar, Brown and Penner are throwing at him.  Quick got his feathers ruffled during game 4.  It will be a very interesting game 5.  If New Jersey beats Los Angeles on Saturday it will be the first time the Kings will have to play a game 6, that may even rattle their feathers even more.  Stay tuned!  History could be made!  Also sign up for the Scotiabank Marathon and support the Canucks Autism Network!  Enjoy X http://canucksautism.ca/get-involved/scotiabank-half-marathon-and-5k-charity-challenge/.
 
 
Picture
Los Angeles Staples Center
LIVE from the STAPLES CENTER in Los Angeles is the history making Stanley Cup run for the KINGS!  All you can say is WOW!  This run is snowballing into a wild ride any hockey fan can truly appreciate.  To start the game "The Great One" Wayne Gretzky dropped the puck between team Captains Dustin Brown and Zach Parise.  Then is was off to the races.  This series is already setting records.  It was the first time since 1951 that Games 1 and 2 of the Final series ended in overtime.  And for the 4th time in a row Los Angeles has won games 1, 2 and 3 of their sereis!  We also saw the first 5 on 3 power play.  New Jersey had a two man advantage for 1:00 but couldn't get on the board and it was LA, LA, LA and LA on the scoreboard.  It will make this quick:
First Period: no goals
Second Period: Alec Matrinez and Anze Kopitar both scored for LA 
Third Period: Jeff Carter and Justin Williams both for LA
Jonathan Quick stopped 22 shots for his 1st shutout of this series but his 3rd shutout of the playoffs.  
Martin Brodeur had a rough night letting in 4 goals on 21 shots.

A wild amount of penalties were taken.  New Jersey took 3 penalties and Los Angeles scored on 2 of them.  Los Angeles took 5 penalties and New Jersey couldn't score on any.  It ended in a 4-0 game and LA is 1 win away from hoisting the Stanley Cup!  Below you can check out photos and video of Quick stopping every shot he faced on the 5 on 3 and goals scored by Martinez, Kopitar, Carter and Williams.  One last thing with Alec Martinex scoring the game winning goal that means that 9 different LA players have scored the game winner in 15 games.  WOW!

Picture
Jonathan Quick looks up to see the replay of his amazing saves last night!
Picture
LA Galaxy and British import David Backham is a regular at Kings games on his own and with his family!
Picture
Kings Captain Dustin Brown has a million reason to smile right now. 15 down 1 to go!
In my last post I talked about the confusing name game played by these tow teams.  Both have a Carter, Greene and Bernier.  I did miss some fun ones.  Below I clear up two more sets of confusion between Richardson and Richards and the Sutter clan will never disappear in hockey!
Picture
#15 King Brad RICHARDSON
Picture
Los Angeles Kings Head Coach Darryl SUTTER, 1/6 of the SUTTER brother Dynasty.
Picture
Los Angeles King Mike RICHARDS
Picture
Former New Jersey Devil Head Coach Brent SUTTER, another 1/6 of the Sutter brother Dynasty! Brent coached for 2 years between 2007-08 and 2008-09.
In episode 4 of Hockey Talk with Courtney I do talk about the Sutter clan.  There are 6 brothers total who made it into the NHL!  Last season both brothers did work for the Calgary Flames.  Brent was the head coach and Darryl was the General Manager.  
Puck drops for Game 4 at the Staples Center Wednesday at 5:00!  This will be an exciting game because the STANLEY CUP will be in the building!  If the Kings win series over!  History could be made!  Enjoy X
 
 
Picture
The Los Angeles Kings got the celebrate for the 2nd time this series!
Hello Everyone!  Happy Sunday!  Last night we may have seen the best hockey game of the series so far!  It had everything.  Great goaltending, overtime, hits.  It had all the elements of old school hockey.  The Kings skated away with another OT victory.  This one ended 2-1. The Kings fly to Los Angeles to play games 3 & 4 and have the chance to win the Stanley Cup for the 1st time in franchise history on home ice.  One of my personal favourite hockey players Drew Doughty scored the opening goal of the game in a coast to coast play and literally skating past every Devil he encountered along the way.  Ryan Carter scored in the 3rd period to force OT.  Jeff Carter scored the game winning goal (not to be confused with Ryan Carter?! We will talk more about that later) and the deal was sealed.  Quick faced 33 shots and Brodeur faced 32.  LA took 4 penalties and New Jersey only 2.  With this win the King are 10-0 on the road!  Meaning they have won all 10 road games played against Vancouver, St. Louis and Phoenix setting a new NHL record! WOW! Below check out the goals scored last night and then read on because listening to these games can make you hear DOUBLE?!?!

Picture
Martin Brodeur making the ole pad save.
Picture
Quick loses his helmet and the game is stopped. Forwards or defence can lose their helmets and keep playing but when a goalie loses his helmet the play will be stopped.
Picture
LA goalie Jonathan X 2: Bernier (L) and Quick (R)
If you had a childhood anything like mine you probably went to school with 7 Matthews, 5 Christophers, 6 Stephanies and 8 kids with the last name Smith, all in your grad class.  Right?  It happens on NHL teams as well, players with the same names.  The Vancouver Canucks bounced around Alex Burrows, Alex Edler and Alex Sulzer before Sulzer was traded to the Buffalo Sabres.  They also have Chris Tanev and Chris Higgins.  They also have Daniel Sedin and Henrik Sedin who's jersey say D.Sedin and H.Sedin.  The Nashville Predators have brothers Andrei Kostitsyn and Sergei Kostitsyn plus Colin Wilson and Kyle Wilson.  When Detroit plays Buffalo you have to listen close because Ryan Miller is the goalie for Buffalo while his baby bro Drew Miller plays for Detroit.  Perhaps the most confusing name similarity is in Colorado?  The Avalanche head coach during a game has Ryan O'Reilly, Ryan O'Byrne and Shane O'Brien to not mix up!  Good grief!  If you sometimes wonder if you are hearing double when watching the Stanley Cup Finals between the Los Angeles Kings and the New Jersey Devils you aren't nor are the commentators making mistakes.  Both goalies for Los Angeles are named Jonathan.  Both teams have a Carter, Greene and Bernier.  Between the Dustins, Williams and trying to keep Richards and Richardson straight it is confusing.  Below I have tried to break it down in so we can start putting different faces to the same names!  hope this helps!

Picture
Los Angeles King Jeff CARTER
Picture
LA King Matt GREENE
Picture
New Jersey Devil Ryan CARTER
Picture
New Jersey Devil Andy GREENE
Picture
King back up goalie Jonathan BERNIER has no originality in his name!
Picture
As far as 1st names go King DUSTIN Penner has been making headlines all playoffs.
Picture
Cutie Justin WILLIAMS plays for the Kings
Picture
Steve BERNIER plays for New Jersey!
Picture
Kings Captain DUSTIN Brown has also been creating his own well deserved buzz.
Picture
While WILLIAM (Willie) Mitchell in also a King
Picture
Alec MARTINEZ is a young King defence
Picture
While MARTIN Brodeur is a veteran New Jersey netminder
Picture
Perhaps the best confuse me name on either the Los Angeles Kings or the New Jersey Devils is Dwight KING who plays for the KINGS!
The puck drops for Game 3 of this Stanley Cup Final Monday at 5:00 in Los Angeles!  If the Kings sweep and Win the Stanley Cup it will be a true Hollywood Story!
Keep sending in your suggestions for Hockey 101s, Fun Facts and Hearts of the Week for Season 2 of Hockey Talk with Courtney plus sign up for the Scotiabank Marathon and support the Canucks Autism Network (CAN) Enjoy Xhttp://canucksautism.ca/get-involved/scotiabank-half-marathon-and-5k-charity-challenge/