Welcome to a special 2014 New Year’s Eve edition of my NHL hockey 101 article. I hadn’t had anything to provide y’all for Christmas, so I might as well end the year right. Here are the top-5 hockey 101 highlights of the past week.
5. Edmonton Oilers @ Calgary Flames (12/27/14)
Johnny Gaudreau makes it 3-0 Flames on a breakaway.
At some point, you got to feel sorry for the oh-so-ever struggling Edmonton Oilers… or maybe not. Starting at the 44-second mark of the video, TJ Brodie has the puck in the Calgary defensive zone.
This next part is just another case of “where the hell is the Oilers’ defense?” Brodie then feeds Johnny Hockey with a nice headman pass up the ice through the neutral zone.
And the rest is history.
4. Chicago Blackhawks @ Colorado Avalanche (12/27/14)
Patrick Kane tips it home to tie the game up at 2.
The video doesn’t show how it all starts, but the Hawks enter the zone. Forward Marcus Kruger has the puck in the offensive zone. He drops it for Kris Versteeg while bracing for a hit by an Avalanche player. Versteeg turns to shake off the Avalanche player on him. Versteeg, now at the point, passes the puck along the blue line to defensemen Duncan Keith. Patrick Kane’s at the front of the net looking for the tip. Keith blasts one towards his stick, and Kane tips it home. The lesson for young hockey players: go to the net and good things happen.
3. Dallas Stars @ St. Louis Blues (12/27/14)
Former Shark Jason Demers make it 4-2 on the PP.
Again, the video doesn’t show all of it, but the puck has been rimmed around the boards towards the left face-off circle. You’ve got one Stars player trying to work to get the puck on the boards. #20, Alexander Steen, for the Blues and #72, Erik Cole of the Stars, goes in to support.
Shawn Horcoff, #10, also goes into support the play and has his stick ready to retrieve the puck whenever the puck is freed. Also notice the eventual goal-scorer sliding into the position to score.
This is where the video picks off. At 1:06 into the video, Horcoff fights for body position so that Jay Bouwmeester can’t get his stick on the puck in the passing lane. Erik Cole slips the puck into the slot area where Demers is, who’s going to tap it home. #9, Steve Ott, can’t get his stick in the lane fast enough and it’s 4-2 Stars on the man-advantage.
2. Philadelphia Flyers @ Nashville Predators (12/27/14)
Mike Fisher makes it 2-1 Nashville on the 5-on-3.
Mike Ribeiro has just gotten the puck from Shea Weber from the blue line. Ribeiro passes it cross crease to Predators’ rookie sensation Filip Forsberg. Eventually, it’s just about digging in to get the puck. Mike Fisher pushes the puck in and gets credit for the goal. Just gritty, hard hockey.
1. Washington Capitals @ Pittsburgh Penguins (12/27/14)
Eric Fehr makes it 3-0 for the team from the U.S. Capital.
Of course, seeing as tomorrow’s the NHL Winter Classic between the Washington Capitals and the Chicago Blackhawks, why not give both teams a little love on this list?
Brooks Laich has the puck and makes a backhand pass to Brooks Orpik, the defenseman at the point.
Orpik passes the puck along the point to John Carlson.
Carlson shoots it on net, and Eric Fehr tips it in. The goal is initially reviewed for a high-stick, but it’s a good goal.
Hope you all enjoy the rest of your New Years Eve. For those of you half way around the world, hope you’re enjoying your New Years! Happy 2015, everyone! Enjoy the Winter Classic.
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