- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy15 mins ago
They say there’s no improving on perfection, and that’s probably true in most cases that don’t involve transforming a beer keg into the Stanley Cup.
Puck Daddy reader Damiën Valkenburg explains:
“I think some Dutch guys changed the game.
“I play with Nijmegen University Radboud Saints in the Dutch college-league. Every season we end with our playoffs, in which the grand prize is the Stanley Keg.
“Which is a Keg of "Olm"-beer turned into a shabby Stanley Cup replica.
“As with the real thing, champions engrave their players in the keg to remain forever a part of Dutch College Hockey history, for whatever that's worth. This year we were lucky (badass) enough to win it all.
“They made it a couple of years ago and it has become our holy grail ever since.
“I thought you might like the idea. Groeten uit Nederland!”
Now, by no means is this the only Stanley Keg we’ve come across. See also:
* The Stanley Keg of Tampa Bay, “a beer keg with a wood trophy box and a cup screwed to the top of the keg.”
- Harrison Mooney at Puck Daddy1 hr ago
Here are your Puck Headlines: a glorious collection of news and views collected from the greatest blogosphere in sports and the few, the proud, the mainstream hockey media.
• More playoff ankle breakage. Here's Justin Braun turning Robyn Regehr inside-out. [Reddit]
• Ken Hitchcock on David Backes, who wasn't available for the pregame skate: “He’s not going to play unless he’s healthy. You never know. He could be skating in another rink. He could be somewhere else. You don’t know. There are a lot of other rinks here in Chicago. So he could be doing other things. But he’s not going into the lineup unless he’s a player. If he’s a player, the way he plays he’s going to have a huge impact on the series. If he skated somewhere else and is in fine-tuned conditioning, you’ll see him tonight.” So in other words, you'll see him tonight. [Sun Times]Wed, Apr 235:00 PM PDTAnaheim at DallasPreview Game
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy3 hrs ago
During the Sochi Games, when Teemu Selanne was helping to lead Finland to bronze with a stellar performance, a smart hockey person told me a curious thing: That they anticipated Selanne would be a healthy scratch in the Stanley Cup Playoffs for Anaheim.
Again, this is was odd, because (1) Selanne was playing out of his mind in the Olympics and (2) because one of the cardinal rules of managing a successful hockey team is that you don’t make Teemu Selanne a healthy scratch. Ever.
And yet here we are: Selanne will be a healthy scratch in playoff game for just the second time in his career, deferring to young speedster Emerson Etem as the Anaheim Ducks try to get their offense rolling in Game 4 at the Dallas Stars.
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy3 hrs ago
It's a Wednesday edition of Marek vs. Wyshynski beginning at 2 p.m. ET/11 a.m. PT, and we're talking about the following and more:
Special Guest Star: No one! Just your boys talking hockey.
• The Habs sweep.
• The Kings might get swept.
• The Calder Trophy
• Tonight's playoff action.
Question of the Day: Jeff and Greg are GOING POSTAL! Ask us anything! Email firstname.lastname@example.org or hit us on Twitter with the hashtag #MvsW to @wyshynski or @jeffmarek. Click here for the Sportsnet live stream or click the play button above!
Click here to download podcasts from the show each day.Subscribe to the podcast via iTunesor Feedburner.
- Sean Leahy at Puck Daddy3 hrs ago
The day the Stanley Cup is presented is the best and worst day on the hockey calendar.
It's the worst because it signals the end of another NHL season and we then have to deal with three months of finding other things to do with our lives. It's the best because the Cup presentation ceremony -- from the tradition of booing Gary Bettman to the captain's first raise to the ensuing on-ice player parade -- is emotional and can't not put a smile on one's face.
What we see on the ice those nights has evolved over the years. As YouTuber lostcanuck shows, the on-ice tradition of presenting and celebrating with the Cup has changed a lot since the Toronto Maple Leafs won it in 1949:
• Taking off the top half of the Cup to celebrate just is not as cool as lifting the entire thing over your head. (Could you fill the bottom portion with booze, though? That could be a gamechanger.)
• Nowadays, the Cup is brought to center ice by one of its handlers and placed on display with a nice NHL table skirt. Back in the day, it appears the league used to borrow one of your grandparents' card tables.
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy4 hrs ago
To celebrate the greatness that is the NHL postseason, your friends at Puck Daddy present a special playoff mega chat at 1 p.m. ET/10 a.m. PT.
Yell at us about our awards picks! Yell at us about our playoff picks! Just yell at us to make you feel better about work stress! Whatever you'd like.
You bring the funny; we bring the abrupt changes in tone and Hamburger Women. That's how it works.
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy4 hrs ago
Forwards Tyler Johnson and Ondrej Palat of the Tampa Bay Lightning and Nathan MacKinnon of the Colorado Avalanche are the three finalists for the 2013-14 Calder Memorial Trophy, which is awarded “to the player selected as the most proficient in his first year of competition,” the National Hockey League announced on Wednesday.
Or as we like to call it, The Nathan MacKinnon Award For Excellence In Being Nathan MacKinnon.
The finalists are the top three vote getters from the Professional Hockey Writers Association ballots, who were also the top three scorers in the NHL among rookies this season, which we’re sure is a complete coincidence.
The Lightning are the first team since the 2008 Chicago Blackhawks to have two Calder Trophy finalists in the same season: Also a center and a winger, named Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane. Maybe you’ve heard of them.
So who wins the Calder?
Why Tyler Johnson Deserves The Calder
From the NHL:Tue, Apr 22Tampa Bay3 - 4MontrealGame Recap
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy6 hrs ago
It’s been a while since we had a foot-in-mouth apology from Hockey Night in Canada’s Ron MacLean, but the venerable host felt it necessary to issue one after insinuating that French-Canadian referees would have the appearance of favoritism towards the Montreal Canadiens in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
In case you missed it: Tampa Bay Lightning Coach Jon Cooper was “pissed” after their Game 3 loss because referee Francois Charron waved off an apparent goal due to goalie interference on forward Alex Killorn. “ They deserved a better fate tonight,” he said of his players, before they were swept out of the playoffs in Game 4.
During Tuesday night’s Game 4 broadcast on CBC, MacLean suggested that there shouldn’t be a French-Canadian referee working that Lightning vs. Canadiens game because Cooper felt that one in the previous game jobbed his team.
The Game 4 officials were Chris Lee and Francois St. Laurent, who we believe is Italian … no, wait, check that, he’s totally French-Canadian.
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy7 hrs ago
If we had a most improved player award to give, it would be bestowed upon Jimmy Fallon, host of NBC’s “The Tonight Show.”
Last May, Fallon attempted an “NHL Awards” bit on his late night show and basically tripped over the pronunciation of every name. And while we’re still not sure how a guy who nails the Boston sports stereotype like Fallon has in the past ("NOOOOMAAAAAR!") gets “Zoo-Day-No” out of “Zdeno Chara” – unless that’s the joke – the 2014 awards are pretty good:
Poor Matt Niskanen. He’s never going to be able to walk into a pub again without someone making a darts joke.
For the record: Brad Marchand isn’t the pizza delivery guy in a 1980s movie about skiing. He’s the horny best friend who gets left naked on a ski lift by the daughter of the resort’s evil owner.
Overall, pretty good. And here we thought Duncan Keith was the only one who effectively mocks headshots in the Stanley Cup Playoffs …
- Sean Leahy at Puck Daddy15 hrs ago
No. 1 Star: Patrick Marleau, San Jose Sharks
The Sharks forward recorded a two point night with a goal and an assist as San Jose beat the Los Angeles Kings in overtime 4-3 to take a 3-0 series lead. After Tomas Hertl's goal midway through the third period tied the game, it was Marleau who ended things 6:20 into the extra period:
No. 2 Star: Tuukka Rask, Boston Bruins
Rask stopped 23 shots as the Bruins shutout the Detroit Red Wings 3-0to take a 2-1 series lead. The shutout was the fourth for Rask in his playoff career. Patrice Bergeron assisted on Dougie Hamilton's opening power play goal and later added an empty-netter, while Jordan Caron scored his first goal since Oct. 5.
No. 3 Star: Max Pacioretty, Montreal Canadiens