Saturday, October 22, 2016

2005 Slovakia National Team Miroslav Satan Jersey

Born on this date in 1974, Miroslav Šatan was drafted by the Edmonton Oilers 11th overall in round five of the 1993 NHL Entry Draft after playing professionally for Dukla Trencin in the final season of the Czechoslovak First Ice Hockey League of 1992-93 and then again in 1993-94 in the first season of the new Slovak Extraliga following the division of Czechoslovakia into the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Satan was a standout that season, scoring 32 goals and 48 points in just 30 games, no doubt pleasing the Edmonton Oilers who had drafted him the previous spring.

He played one well-travelled season in the minors in North America in 1994-95 with the Cape Breton Oilers  of the AHL (25 games), the Detroit Vipers (8 games) and the San Diego Gulls of the IHL (6 games) and even one game with the Detroit Falcons of the low level Colonial Hockey League.

He made his NHL debut with the Oilers in 1995-96 and scored 35 goals over the course of two seasons before being traded to the Buffalo Sabres near the end of the second season in Edmonton.

Satan Oilers photo SatanOilers.jpg
Satan broke into the NHL with the Oilers

He would go on to play eight seasons with the Sabres, leading them in scoring six times with a career best 40 goals in 1998-99  and a career high 75 points in 2002-03. The Sabres would also make it to the Stanley Cup Finals in 1999 for the first time in Satan's career.

Satan Sabres photo SatanSabres.jpg
Satan played eight seasons with Buffalo

Following the NHL lockout of 2004-05, when he played 18 games back in Slovakia for Slovan Bratislava, he became a free agent and chose to sign with the New York Islanders where he would finish tied for first, second and then third in team scoring during his three seasons on Long Island, highlighted by his 35 goal 66 point season in 2005-06.

Satan Islanders photo SatanIslanders.jpg
Satan scored a high of 35 goals on Long Island

Satan would then sign with the Pittsburgh Penguins for the 2008-09 season, scoring 36 points in 65 games before being placed on waivers on the trading deadline late in the season. After being assigned to the minors with the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins of the AHL, he was recalled by the Penguins a month later and rejoined the Penguins during the Stanley Cup Playoffs. He would appear in nine games and score a goal and four assists on his way to winning the Stanley Cup for the only time in his career.

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Satan celebrates the only Stanley Cup of his career in 2009

His final NHL season saw Satan sign with the Boston Bruins in early January halfway through the 2009-10 season. During that season's playoffs, Satan would score the game winning goal against his old club Buffalo in double overtime and then score the series clinching goal five days later.

Satan Bruins photo SatanBruins.jpg
Satan spent half a season with Boston

After 14 NHL seasons, Satan would move back to Europe to continue his career. A shortened 2010-11 season saw him play 10 games with Slovan Bratislava and 6 more with Dynamo Moscow of the KHL.

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A rare shot of Satan with Dynamo Moscow

Satan would play a full season with Slovan Bratislava in 2011-12, a successful campaign that saw him average more than a point per game with 52 points in 49 games, capped off by leading all scorers with 22 points in 12 playoff games as Slovan captured the league championship.

He would play two additional seasons with Bratislava, who had now moved to the KHL for the 2012-13 season before retiring at the age of 39 following the 2-13-14 season.

Satan Slovan photo SatanSlovan.jpg
Satan as captain of Bratislava in the KHL

Satan's final NHL totals were 1,050 games played with 363 goals and 735 points with an additional 114 goals coming while playing in Europe.

Internationally, Satan has appeared for Slovakia in the World Championships 14 times, including helping the newly formed nation climb the international ladder system in the quickest time possible, as Slovakia was initially placed in the lower levels of the system while the Czech Republic remained at the top in Pool A after Czechoslovakia divided in two.

In his first World Championships, Slovakia won Pool C in 1994 (where Satan was named Best Forward), followed immediately by Slovakia winning the Pool B in 1995 to reach the Top Division in just two years. Satan was on the Slovak roster in 1996, their first in the Top Division.

He then earned a silver medal as team captain in 2000 (where he was again named Best Forward) and was captain again as Slovakia reached the pinnacle of winning World Championship gold in 2002.

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Satan hoisting the World Championship trophy

Satan was captain once more in 2003, winning bronze and appeared in the World Championships again in 2004, 2005, 2007, 2010, 2011, 2012 (winning silver), 2013 and one final time in 2014.

Additionally, he has played in the World Juniors in 1994, the World Cup of Hockey in 1996 and 2004, again as team captain, as well as the 1994, 2006 and 2010 Winter Olympics. He was also named to the 2002 team, but with the NHL not suspending play during the qualification rounds, Slovakia was eliminated before he was able to participate.

In all, Satan would win one gold, two silver and a bronze at the World Championships while appearing in 180 games, scoring 86 goals while being a vital member of the of both the fledgling national team program which started life in the bottom rung "C" Pool and eventual world champions in the span of eight short years.

Satan Slovakia photo SatanSlovakia.jpg

Today's featured jersey is a 2005 Slovakia National Team Miroslav Satan jersey. For the 2005 World Championships in Austria, all the participating team's jerseys were redesigned, only to be quickly replaced by the new Nike Swift jerseys for the 2006 Olympics, leaving today's featured jersey with a all-too-brief lifespan of one year, making it quite rare.

This jersey features the IIHF patch, the Slovakia Ice Hockey Federation patch, Satan's captain's "C" and a pair of our custom made Skoda sponsorship patches, from the loyal sponsor of the IIHF World Championships.

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Slovakia 2005 jersey photo Slovakia2005HB.jpg

Today's first featured videos are from the 2002 World Championships when the Slovakian National Team excited the nation by capturing the gold medal.

Here is a compilation of goals scored by Satan. Do not miss the first one, shot between his legs and behind his back. A real beauty.

Last up is a highly professional look at Satan's national team career well worth your time.

Friday, October 21, 2016

1967-68 Minnesota North Stars Bill Masterton Jersey

The Minnesota North Stars were granted a franchise in the NHL expansion of 1967 and their name was chosen following a name the team contest, with 608 different names submitted from 1,536 entries. The name "North Stars" was inspired by the Minnesota state motto "L'Etoile du Nord", French for "The Star of the North".

Other suggested names were Blades, Norsemen, Muskies, Lumberjacks, Mallards, Voyageurs and the simply horrid Puckaroos!

A new arena was a necessity in order for Minnesota to be granted one of the new franchises, as the largest arena in the area had a capacity of just 8,500, well short of the 12, 500 minimum for the NHL. It was decided  that the new Metropolitan Sports Center would be built across the parking lot from Metropolitan Stadium, home of the Minnesota Twins baseball club, in the suburb of Bloomington.

The location was a compromise between the cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul, as the two cities had a rivalry in minor league baseball which dated back to the turn of the century, and the fears were that an arena built in one city would alienate the citizens living in the other.

Met Center
Metropolitan Sports Center

"Met Center", as it was more commonly known until 1982 when it became the arena's official name, was built at a cost of $7 million and was known for it's great sightlines, excellent ice surface and distinctively colored and randomly distributed gold, white, green and black seats, which at times during the North Stars history were all too visible.

Met Center seats
Met Center's distinctive colored seats

The North Stars played their first four games on the road before returning to Minnesota for their first ever game in the brand new Metropolitan Sports Center on this date in 1967.

North Stars 1st game ticket
North Stars first game ticket stub

Workers were still installing seats on the day of the home opener against the North Stars fellow expansion cousins the California Seals, who Minnesota defeated 3-1 for the first win in franchise history on goals from Bill Goldsworthy, Ray Cullen and Dave Balon.

Goldsworthy first goal at Met Center
Bill Goldsworthy scores the first goal in Met Center history

Following their first home game, the North Stars alternated between hot and cold, going undefeated for four games at a time, but alternating with winless streaks of five or six games until finding themselves at 14-15-8 on the night of January 13th, 1968, when Bill Masterton, who had scored the first goal in North Stars history, was checked and fell backwards, hitting his head on the ice, knocking him unconscious. Masterton suffered a massive brain hemorrhage and died two days later at the age of 29, the only player to ever die of an on ice injury in the NHL.

Masterton's #19 was retired by the team and ushered in increasing use of helmets in hockey, which later became mandatory in 1979. The Bill Masterton Trophy, awarded annually in the NHL for perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey was created in his memory.

Bill Masterton
Bill Masterton

Following Masterton's death, the North Stars understandably lost five of six and regrouped to play near .500 for the rest of the season to finish at 27-32-15 in fourth place in the West Division made up of the six expansion clubs, four points back of the first place Philadelphia Flyers.

The North Stars were led in goals (35) and points (56) by Wayne Connelly while Andre Boudrias had the most assists (35) and Cesare Maniago led the goaltenders with games played (52) and wins (21). Goldsworthy led the team in playoff scoring with 15 points in 14 games.

1967-68 Minnesota North Stars
The 1967-68 Minnesota North Stars

In the playoffs, the North Stars would eliminate the Los Angeles Kings in seven games, which included three victories on home ice, before falling to the St. Louis Blues on the road in Game 7 when the Blues scored with 11 seconds remaining in regulation to force overtime, costing the North Stars a chance to host a Stanley Cup Final in the Met Center's first year of operation.

It would not be until 1981 that the finals were played on Met Center ice when the North Stars unsuccessfully attempted to derail the New York Islanders dynasty in progress. Ten years later the Pittsburgh Penguins would hoist Lord Stanley's Cup following their Game 6 defeat of the Cinderella North Stars at the Met Center.

The Met Center was also home to the Minnesota State High School Hockey Tournament from 1969-1975 as the best high school teams from all around Minnesota, from Rochester in the south to Warroad near the Canadian border skated on the same ice as the NHL stars of the day to determine annually who was the best in the state in front of sold out crowds of 15,000 screaming fans.

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The Minnesota State High School Hockey Tournament
playing to a sold out crowd on the North Stars home ice

Other teams to call the Met Center home were the short-lived Minnesota Muskies and Minnesota Pipers of the ABA and the Minnesota Kicks and Minnesota Strikers indoor soccer clubs. Many concerts were also held there throughout it's history, ranging from Frank Sinatra to local superstar Prince.

Eventually the Met Center fell victim to it's outdated design, which lacked the essential number of private suites, although several remodeling efforts added a club area at the upper end of one end and some jury-rigged suites hanging from the roof at the opposite end, but it was not enough to save the North Stars from being relocated in 1993.

Today's featured jersey is a 1967-68 Minnesota North Stars Bill Masteron jersey. This jersey is the first style of sweaters worn during the North Stars inaugural season with a lace-up collar before they were replaced by a v-neck collar early in the season.

The following season the sweaters would change again, with the addition of a white shoulder yoke and remain in use until 1975 when the single white stripe on the arms and waist would be broken into two parallel stripes plus the addition of highly attractive drop shadowed numbers.

Minnesota North Stars 1967-68 jersey photo Minnesota North Stars 1967-68 F jersey.jpg
Minnesota North Stars 1967-68 jersey photo Minnesota North Stars 1967-68 B jersey_1.jpg

Bonus jersey: Today's bonus jersey is a 1967-68 Minnesota North Stars Cesare Maniago jersey as worn only during the North Stars first preseason series of 14 games from September 16 through October 5, 1967.

Aside from the two styles of sweaters worn during their first season, our friends at have brought to light a different set of jerseys worn during the preseason, which featured a different version of the well known "N" logo and a different font used for the numbering, which you can read about here.

This set was discarded before the regular season began for a few reasons. Apparently the North Stars trainer shrank the jersey by washing the cotton/nylon jerseys in hot water and then compounded the mistake by putting them in a hot dryer! Additionally, the team did not like the thin version of the N logo, with it's downward angle upper serif and tiny star above the arrow.

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After this set of jerseys was identified through photos in publicity shots, hockey cards, newspaper articles and programs, the mystery began of just whatever happened to this set of jerseys?

A few years later the most unexpected thing happened. An auction for the contents of a storage locker in 2013 turned out to contain the set of the North Stars white preseason only jerseys, the whereabouts of which were unknown for over 45 years!

To date, only one of the green preseason jerseys known to exist is the Masterton jersey, which his family donated to the Manitoba Hockey Hall of Fame.

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Minnesota North Stars 1967-68 preseason jersey photo Minnesota North Stars 1967-68 preseason B jersey.jpg.png
Photos  from

Today's video segment begins with the story of Masterton.

Our next video is one of Met Center's most memorable games, a bench clearing brawl between the North Stars and the rival Chicago Blackhawks.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

1997-98 Detroit Red Wings Slava Fetisov Jersey

By the time he completed the 1988-89 season in the Soviet Championship league, Viacheslav Fetisov had won 11 Soviet Championships, a pair of Player of the Year awards, two European Junior golds, three World Junior golds, six golds, one silver and one bronze medal at the World Championships, a Canada Cup championship and two Olympic gold medals plus one silver, but there was one championship trophy he was not eligible to compete for - the Stanley Cup.

Slava Fetisov 1986 World Championship
Fetisov enjoyed unprecedented success in the Soviet Union
domestically and internationally

Around the time of the 1989 World Championships, Sergei Priakin, considered expendable by the Soviet National Team, was allowed by Soviet authorities to play for the Calgary Flames in the NHL. Looking to escape the rigid Soviet system and the iron hand of coach Viktor Tikhonov, whose 11 month a year training schedule had grown more than tiresome, the now 31 year old Fetisov also requested to be allowed a move to the NHL.

He met with great resistance at first, but with a new policy of openness now taking hold in the Soviet Union, as well as the Soviet officials desire for an influx of cash, Fetisov, along with seven other players, were allowed to leave for North America, with the stipulation that they continued to compete internationally for the Soviet Union.

Originally drafted by the Montreal Canadiens in 1978, Fetisov's name was put back into the draft in 1983 when he was selected by the New Jersey Devils. The new Soviet players had an immediate impact on the NHL, even as they dealt with various instances of culture shock and a less than warm welcome by Canadians who felt their jobs were being taken.

"For the first 25 games or so, my partners didn't understand my style and I didn't understand the style of the NHL, but we all learned a lot and I thought I had a very good second half," said Fetisov. "It was tough to get out of the country, to fight against a Communist system. And it was tough when I got here (the NHL) for a couple years," Slava admitted. "Many times I would think, 'Why am I here; why did I do it?' I was a big player in Europe and people knew me. Here, all of a sudden, I had to struggle. But I keep telling myself I have to fight through this stuff."

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Fetisov broke into the NHL with the New Jersey Devils

Fetisov scored a career high 42 points during his first North American season, while compatriot Sergei Makarov was named the recipient of the Calder Trophy.

The move to North America had great meaning to Fetisov, beyond just the opportunity to earn a larger paycheck. "It was a victory against a whole system," Fetisov said. "It was not easy. You always have to fight for everything and I fought for everything I have in hockey. I also won the biggest fight away from hockey. That was the fight against communism, the fight for freedom of choices."

In keeping with the agreement, following the Devils elimination from the Stanley Cup playoffs, Fetisov won his seventh and final gold medal at the 1990 World Championships.

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The gold medal winning 1990 Soviet Union National Team,
the seventh World Championship gold of Fetisov's career

He would play four additional seasons for New Jersey, as well as his final appearance for the Soviet Union in 1991 World Championships, where he would the second bronze medal of his career, prior to a move to the Detroit Red Wings during the 1994-95 season.

Once in Detroit, the Red Wings advanced to the Stanley Cup Finals, only to lose to Fetisov's former club, the Devils. In 69 games with Detroit the following season, Fetisov would equal his NHL career high with 42 points. Additionally, the Red Wings would again make a strong playoff push, eventually losing in the Conference Finals to the eventual champion Colorado Avalanche. Prior to the start of the following NHL season, Fetisov would conclude his international career by playing for Russia for the first and only time at the 1996 World Cup of Hockey.

It all came together for the Red Wings in 1997, as Fetisov, as part of the famed "Russian Five", won the 1997 Stanley Cup with a four game sweep of the Philadelphia Flyers.

Russian Five
The Russian Five posing with their spoils of success

The victory made Fetisov and long-time teammate Igor Larionov the only men to have ever won the Stanley Cup, the World Championship, an Olympic gold medal, the World Junior Championship and the Canada Cup. The Canada Cup evolved into the World Cup of Hockey, and Joe Sakic and Scott Niedermayer joined the two Russians as winners of the five most important championships in the world of hockey.

Following the Stanley Cup victory celebrations in 1997, Fetisov was involved in a limousine crash which ended the career of teammate Vladimir Konstantinov and quite nearly cost him his life. Fetisov escaped with relatively minor injuries and was able to continue his playing career.

Shortly after the following season began, Fetisov competed in his 500th NHL game, a 3-3 tie against the St. Louis Blues on this date in 1997. It would prove to be another successful season for Detroit, which concluded with an emotional repeat championship for the Red Wings which ended in a memorable scene on the ice as a wheelchair bound Konstantinov was included in the Stanley Cup presentation following the Red Wings victory. It would be the final game of Fetisov's NHL career.

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Fetisov sharing the Red Wings Stanley Cup victory with Konstantinov
following what would be the final game of his career

He would retire with 367 games played in the Soviet Union, scoring 339 points, and 546 games in the NHL, mainly due to the much longer NHL schedule despite playing two seasons more in the Soviet Union, in which Fetisov scored 228 points.

Fetisov has won numerous awards in his home country, including the Order of Lenin in 1988 and even had an asteroid named for him. In the world of hockey, Fetisov was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2001. "I just couldn't believe it when they called me," said Viacheslav. "It's a great honour. You play all your life to get the recognition and it feels great, especially being a Russian-born hockey player and spending most of the best years back in Europe. It's a great honour to be in same category as other legends. I have achieved everything I dreamed of in my childhood," said Fetisov.

In 2008, Fetisov was named to the IIHF's International Centennial All-Star Team, which named but five players to create the finest starting lineup of the century, with Fetisov receiving 54 of a possible 56 votes, with no other player earning more than 38.

Today's featured jersey is a 1997-98 Detroit Red Wings Viacheslav Fetisov jersey as worn during his 500th NHL contest. This jersey is highlighted by the "Believe" patch worn in support of Konstantinov and team masseur Sergei Mnatsakanov in it's regular season location of the upper right chest. This patch is better known for it's location on the left sleeve, where it was moved to make way for the 1998 Stanley Cup Finals patch.

Detroit Red Wings 97-98 jersey
Detroit Red Wings 97-98 jersey

Bonus jersey: Today's bonus jersey is a 1991-92 New Jersey Devils Viacheslav Fetisov jersey as worn following Fetisov's being granted permission by the Soviet authorities to become one of the earliest Soviet players to compete in the NHL. The Devils wore red and green jerseys for their first 11 seasons in New Jersey until changing to red and black jerseys beginning the following season, which would be Fetisov's  fourth with the Devils.

The 1991-92 Devils jerseys can be instantly recognized by the NHL 75th Anniversary patch worn on the all the players jerseys that season.

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photo courtesy of Classic Auctions

Today's video segment contains footage from the Slava Fetisov Farewell Hockey Game which took place in Russia. See if you can recognize any NHL stars in the footage.

In this brief highlight, Fetisov slices and dices Team Canada and scores easily after a coast to coast rush.

We conclude today with a tribute video to Fetisov, which includes some amazing footage of his time in the Soviet Union, much of which we have never seen before as well as some of the original red and green New Jersey Devils jerseys. Highly recommended, but perhaps with the sound off...

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

1966-67 Boston Bruins Bobby Orr Jersey

On this date in 1966 Bobby Orr played in his first NHL game, scoring his first point with an assist as the Boston Bruins defeated the Detroit Red Wings 6-2 in Boston.

Orr, a defenseman and considered by many to be the greatest player in the history of the NHL, was signed by the Bruins at the age of 14. League rules at the time dictated that Orr could not play in the NHL until turning 18. Orr bided his time playing for the Oshawa Generals of the Ontario Hockey League and, in his final season in junior hockey, scored 94 points in 47 games, an average of two points per game, an unheard of average for a defenseman.

Bobby Orr Rookie camp
Orr, wearing #27 during his first NHL training camp

He would win the
Calder Trophy during his first season with the Bruins after scoring 41 points in 61 games. He would miss nine games late in the season with a knee injury, foreshadowing the injury problems that would plague his career. Prior to Orr's arrival, the Bruins had missed the playoffs for seven consecutive seasons and, while they would not make the post-season during Orr's rookie season, they would make the playoffs in every subsequent season of Orr's career in Boston.

Bobby Orr Rookie
Bobby Orr during the 1966-67 season

Despite only playing in 46 games of the 1967-68 season, Orr would win the first of eight consecutive
Norris Trophies. Back on track in 1968-69, he would play in 67 games and top 20 goals for the first time with 21 and total 64 points.

Orr would explode the following season, scoring 33 goals and adding a whopping 87 assists to total 120 points, six short of the league record and become the first and only defenseman to lead the NHL in scoring, which would net him the
Art Ross Trophy. Additionally, he was named the winner of the Hart Trophy as league MVP. The Bruins would advance through the playoffs, eventually winning the Stanley Cup in overtime of Game 4, a goal captured in an iconic photograph of Orr flying through the air in celebration. Following the playoffs, he would be named the recipient of the Conn Smythe Trophy, making him the first player to win four major NHL awards in the same season.

Orr would top his league leading point total from the previous season with 139 points in 1970-71, including a league leading 102 assists, 26 more than the next closest player, and place second in the scoring race behind Bruin's teammate Phil Esposito while winning the Hart Trophy for the second time. Orr would record a plus-minus rating of +124 that season, an NHL record that still stands today.

1971-72 would see Orr play in 76 games and equal his 37 goals from the previous season while totaling 117 points. Orr and the Bruins would capture their second Stanley Cup and Orr would win his fifth consecutive Norris Trophy, his third consecutive Hart Trophy and his second Conn Smythe Trophy.

1972-73 saw another 100 point season after returning from knee surgery following the Stanley Cup, which forced Orr to miss the 1972 Summit Series against the Soviet Union after being named to Team Canada.

The Bruins would return to the finals in 1973-74 following a regular season in which Orr would score 32 goals and 90 assists for 122 points followed by another 18 points in 16 playoff games.

Orr would once again win the NHL scoring race in 1974-75, capturing the Art Ross Trophy for the second time after a career high 46 goals, becoming the first defenseman to ever score 40 goals, combined with 89 assists for 135 points. He would be named to the NHL First All-Star Team for the eighth consecutive season, win his eighth consecutive Norris Trophy, play in his seventh NHL All-Star Game and win his first Lester B. Pearson Award.

His multiple knee surgeries would catch up to him, limiting him to only 10 games of the 1975-76 season. While essentially playing on one knee, Orr would compete for Team Canada in the 1976 Canada Cup, earning rave reviews and being named tournament MVP in the last hurrah of his storied career.

A move to the Chicago Black Hawks followed for the next two seasons but he totaled just 26 games and 27 points in 1976-77 and 1978-79.

His final career totals are 657 games played, 270 goals and 645 assists for 915 points after ten seasons in Boston and the two in Chicago. At the time of his retirement, Orr was the leading defenseman in NHL history in goals, assists and points. The only players who have averaged more points per game than Orr are Wayne Gretzky, Mario Lemieux and Mike Bossy - all forwards.

Orr's speed, acceleration and creative offensive ability, combined with his toughness and defensive skills revolutionized the position of defense and changed the game forever. He also moved beyond the world of hockey, becoming a mainstream celebrity in the United States.

While we have given you a brief overview of the game-changing career of Bobby Orr, entire books are devoted to his career and the impact he had on the NHL, and we here at Third String Goalie recommend Searching for Bobby Orr.

Today's featured jersey is a 1966-67 Boston Bruins Bobby Orr jersey as worn during Orr's rookie season. This particular jersey recently sold at auction for $191,200, clearly putting it in the upper echelon of historic hockey jerseys, as the sale price currently ranks third behind only the $1.27 million for Paul Henderson's 1972 Team Canada jersey and $250,000 for a Wayne Gretzky jersey. A 1974-75 Orr jersey is the only other jersey to ever sell for over $100,000 when it sold for $115,000, giving Orr two of the top four places.

When purchasing a Bobby Orr Bruins jersey, please be aware that Orr did not wear his name on the back of any Boston Bruins jersey during his career, with the only exception being when they were temporarily added for national TV games, as was the practice back then. Quite often Orr jerseys are sold on ebay or other online stores with Orr's name incorrectly on the back of the jersey, as if his iconic #4 wasn't enough.

Even during Orr's first season in Chicago no names were used on the back, making just the final six games of his career with the Black Hawks in 1978-79, a sad and unfortunate end to a great career and not exactly worthy of recreating for your collection, and the 1976 Canada Cup the few times Orr regularly wore his name on the back of a jersey outside of the NHL All-Star Game.

Boston Bruins 67-68 jersey
Boston Bruins 67-68 jersey

Today's video selections is the surprising find of the 1979 Bobby Orr Jersey Retirement Ceremony, somewhat oddly scheduled for the night of an exhibition game against the Soviet Wings. We can't recall any other jersey retirement scheduled for an exhibition game before. One would think that in 1979 any Soviet team on it's own would be enough of a draw to fill the building.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

1986-87 Vancouver Canucks Doug Lidster Jersey

Born on this date in 1960, Doug Lidster played four seasons at Colorado College and made mark right off the bat with 18 goals and 43 points as a freshman, which led to his being drafted by the Vancouver Canucks in the 1980 NHL Entry Draft. Three more consistent seasons followed capped off in 1982-83 with 56 points in 34 games.

The following year Lidster became a member of the Canadian National Team, which led to his participation in the 1984 Olympics in Sarajevo, Yugoslavia. At the conclusion of the Games, Lidster made his NHL debut by playing in 8 games with the Canucks.

Lidster Canada
Lidster and Mario Gosselin at the 1984 Olympics for Canada

Lidster would then begin a run of nine years of consistency and durability patrolling the blueline for the Canucks, as he would play a minimum of 63 games and have five seasons of over 70 games. Additionally, his point production was between 22 and 38 points every one of those nine years, save the 1986-87 season when he set a career highs with 12 goals and 51 assists for 63 points, 25 points more than any other season of his career.

Lidster Canucks
Lidster was one of three Canucks tri-captains in 1990-91

Lidster was then dealt by the Canucks to the New York Rangers for the magical 193-94 season, during which the Rangers not only won the Stanley Cup, but did so by defeating the very same Canucks who had dealt Lidster away. Thanks to the extensive travel the Canucks endured as a west coast team and the low playing time he had gotten with the Rangers, Lidster described winning the cup against the Canucks as "bittersweet". "Once we won and we were shaking hands, I realized that I knew the Canucks players better than my own teammates."

Lidster Rangers

For the 1994-95 season, Lidster was once again on the move, this time to the St. Louis Blues. For the second season in a row, Lidster was limited to under 40 games, which had the expected result on his scoring numbers.

Lidster Blues photo Lidster Blues.jpg
Lidster's term with the Blues was brief

St. Louis then traded Lidster back to the Rangers for a second term. Now playing a more defensive role, his number of games played diminished over the next three seasons from 59 to 48 and then 36.

He would then sign with the Dallas Stars late in the 1998-99 season as a free agent after spending the majority of his season with the Canadian National Team, and while he was limited to just 17 regular season games, he did participate in 4 playoff contests as Dallas would go on to win the Stanley Cup that year.

Lidster's final NHL totals are 75 goals and 268 assists for 343 points in 897 games.

During his career he also participated in the World Championships on three occasions, first in 1985 winning a silver medal, and again in 1990 and then again in 1991, earning him a second silver medal.

Today's featured jersey is a 1986-87 Vancouver Canucks Doug Lidster jersey. This style jersey came immediately following the highly controversial "flying V" style worn from 1978 to 1985. After that unconventional style ran it's course, the Canucks logo was promoted from the sleeves to the main crest in a more traditional manner, but still sporting the aggressive colors of the "flying V'. The V shape still appeared on the shoulders and pants, but in a manner certainly less "in your face" as the previous style.

This new version would last four seasons until and even more traditional jersey would be adopted, which included reverting to a white home jersey rather than gold, as was the case for for the previous 11 seasons.

Vancouver Canucks 86-87 jersey
photo courtesy of Classic Auctions

Bonus jersey: Today's bonus jersey is a 1996-97 New York Rangers Doug Lidster jersey. This alternate style was first introduced for the 1996-97 season and worn for two seasons until being replaced by a white version of the same jersey for 1998-99. The team went back to the original blue version for the 1999-00 season and it remained in use until the 2006-07 season until all alternate jerseys were discontinued for the 2007-08 season when the new Reebok Edge jerseys were introduced.

New York Rangers 1996-97 jersey photo New York Rangers 1996-97 F jersey.jpg
New York Rangers 1996-97 jersey photo New York Rangers 1996-97 B jersey.jpg 

Today's video section begins with Lidster showing off his offensive skills as he beats the Edmonton Oilers Grant Fuhr.

Next, Lidster battles Rick Tocchet of the Philadelphia Flyers.

Monday, October 17, 2016

1989-90 Calgary Flames Doug Gilmour Jersey

On this date in 1989, the Calgary Flames traveled to Le Colisée to take on the Quebec Nordiques.

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The 1989-90 Calgary Flames

Rick Wamsely got the start in goal for the Flames while Stephane Fiset was the starter for the home team.

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Stephane Fiset got the start in goal for Quebec

The Nordiques opened the scoring at 4:26 with a goal from Darin Kimble, his first of the still early season from Claude Loiselle and Greg Adams. Just over three minutes later, Curtis Leschyshyn made it 2-0 for the Nordiques  from Marc Fortier and Daniel Dore at 7:31 on a power play. Less than one minute later Wamsley's night was over when he was pulled after Michel Goulet converted another power play opportunity from Joe Sakic and Mario Marios at 8:29. Mike Vernon then came on in relief of Wamsley, who had given up 3 goals and 6 shots.

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Mike Vernon entered the game in relief

Gary Suter stopped the bleeding for Calgary at 9:44 from Joe Mullen and Doug Gilmour at even strength. Peter Stastny restored the Nordiques three goal lead when he beat Vernon at 15:03 from Michel Petit and Finland's Iiro Jarvi, also at even strength to close out a great first period for the host Nordiques, who led 4-1 at the break.

Calgary wasted little time in the second period letting the Nordiques they would not be going away quietly when Joel Otto scored after just 37 seconds from Suter and  Mullen. Joe Nieuwendyk then pulled the Flames within a goal when he beat Fiset at 6:13 from Al MacInnis and Soviet Sergei Makarov at even strength.

The Nordiques then capitalized on a five minute major and game misconduct to the Flames Theo Fleury for drawing blood while highsticking. First, Guy Lafleur scored at 14:31 from Jeff Brown and Joe Cirella followed by Stastny restoring the three goal lead for Quebec from Brown and Dore just 28 seconds later. The final five minutes passed with no additional goals, leaving the Nordiques ahead 6-3 after two.

At 7:35 of the third, Cirella put the Nordiques up by 4 before Brown made it a 5 goal lead at 11:27, with both goals being assisted by Stastny and Jarvi.

Now leading 8-3 with seven minutes remaining, things were looking good for Quebec, so there was likely little concern when Gary Roberts scored an even strength goal for the Fames from Makarov and Rick Nattress at 13:27 to cut the lead to 8-4. Eyebrows might have been raised when Roberts scored again 16 seconds later from Makarov and Nieuwendyk but when Jim Peplinski beat Fiset for the Flames third goal in just 27 seconds (from Paul Ranheim and MacInnis) to close the gap to 2, the Nordiques knew they once again had a game on their hands.

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Roberts scored twice in 16 seconds

When Cirella was whistled for a penalty for Quebec at 15:07, tensions must have risen among the home 15,391 fans, but throats must have really tightened when Marois was sent off while helping kill Cirella's penalty at 16:55, creating a brief two-man advantage for Calgary. Tables then turned when MacInnis found himself in the box for the Flames just as Cirella's penalty was set to expire, negating the Calgary advantage from Marios' penalty.

As time was winding down, the Flames hopes were dealt a severe blow when Roberts was given a double minor and a game misconduct at 19:41 while the Nordiques' Cirella received a single minor for his part in the fracas - leaving Calgary shorthanded for the final 19 seconds of the game and still trailing by 2.

Right off the ensuing faceoff and with Vernon having been pulled for an extra attacker, Gilmour lit the lamp from Otto and MacInnis at 19:45 - shorthanded - to reduce the once 5 goal advantage to 1 with 15 seconds to play.

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Gilmour scored shorthanded for Calgary

Then, from a center ice faceoff, somehow, Gilmour won the draw and got the puck to Ranheim who beat Fiset with a wrist shot from the top of the slot - with the Flames still shorthanded -  for the fifth time in 2:22 just four seconds after Gilmour's goal to complete the amazing Flames comeback. The two goals four seconds apart not surprisingly set an NHL record for the Fastest Two Shorthanded Goals in league history.

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Ranheim's goal tied the game and set an NHL record

The overtime passed without any additional scoring, leaving each team with a point from the unfathomable 8-8 draw, which no one saw coming with the road team down by 5 with under seven minutes to play.

None of the goalies acquitted themselves very well, with Vernon finishing with 17 saves on 22 shots in 56:24 and Fiset, who somehow managed to stay in the game after giving up three in 27 seconds, made 27 saves on 35 shots.

The Flames would go on to win the Smythe division with a 42-23-15 record but were bounced in the first round of the playoffs, while the Nordiques had a dismal season at 12-61-7 for 31 points, making them the doormat of the league, finishing a full 33 points back of the second worst team.

Today's featured jersey is a 1989-90 Calgary Flames Doug Gilmour jersey. That season was the Flames 10th season in Calgary and they marked the occasion by wearing a patch on their upper left arm.

The Flames moved to Calgary from Atlanta back in 1980. They simply retained the same jerseys worn in Atlanta, only with the logo changed from a flaming A to a flaming C. This style would remain unchanged through the 1993-94 season before being replaced with a new style after a long 14 year run.

This style was then revived by the club as a throwback jersey in 2009-10 for their 30th anniversary season a pleasing and well received return tat prompted the team to make it their alternate through the 2012-13 season.

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photos courtesy of Classic Auctions

Today's video selection is a look back at the career of Gilmour.


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