Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Fun facts about hockey!

-The first puck was square, not round.
-Originally, games were played with 9 players on a side.

-A puck is 3 inches in diameter, and 1 inch thick.

-A puck sometimes moves at speeds of more than 100 MPH.

-Hockey pucks are frozen before being used in play, because the RUBBER with which they are made is too bouncy otherwise.

-Most fans know about Canada's lucky loonie at centre ice, but did you know a dime was buried in the ice BEFORE the dollar coin, just underneath it?

-Legendary goalie Jacques Plante loved to knit!
-NHL overtime was eliminated during WWII, because there were restrictions on train travel, so they couldn't risk going long and missing the one and only train that night. It was only reinstated in 1983-84.

-The great Howie Morenz was rumoured to have died of a broken heart after being told he would never play hockey again.

-Don Kowharski was the first Canadian referee EVER requested by the Soviets in an international Canada-USSR match, Game One of the 1987 Canada Cup Final. Before that there were numerous controversies concerning Russians and their tactics surrounding officiating.

-The Stanley Cup has only had two years off since becoming the NHL's top prize; the 2005 NHL lockout, and the final series of the 1919 playoffs were cancelled due to the 'Flu epidemic...one player even died, Joe Hall.

-Former Montreal goalie Ken Dryden is the ONLY NHLer to have won the Conn Smythe for best playoff performance BEFORE winning the Calder for Best Rookie Player.

-The Stanley Cup has been surrounded by story and myth, but it has had a fun life. It has been thrown in the river, urinated in, found at the bottom of Mario Lemieux's swimming pool, travelled to a live combat zone, been left behind by the players and once used as a vase by the person who found it, children have been baptised in it, and oh, so much more. 

-The Calgary Flames had the chance to draft Martin Brodeur, but blew it big time, trading with New Jersey for an earlier pick...Calgary chose bust Trevor Kidd, while NJ waited their turn and took Brody...

-There was once a rule saying the team captain had to be on the ice at ALL times. There have been a lot of weird rules, like penalties for kicking with your skate.

-The New York Rangers are so named because of the original owner's name, Tex Rickard...Tex's Rangers were born from that!

-Lester Patrick, patriarch of the Hockey Royal Patrick family, did it all; in 1928 as coach and manager of the Rangers, he filled in for his injured goalie in Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Finals... the elderly Patrick played well, and won 2-1.

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