Friday, October 15, 2010

Podcast: The Man They Called Mr. Goalie

With 11 All-Star team selections, three Vezina trophies, a Conn Smythe trophy, a Calder Memorial trophy and the invention of the butterfly style of goaltending to hsi name, Glenn Hall is among the premier contenders as best goaltender in National Hockey League history.

Hockey coach, and writer Tom Adrahatas has made a case that Glenn Hall is, in fact, the number one goaltender of all time.

He did so in a 2002 book “Glenn Hall – The Man They Call Mr. Goalie” Greystone Books). He is also did so with us in this “Journey into Hockey” conversation.From Detroit to Chicago to St. Louis, Glenn Hall made a difference where he played. He established a remarkable and still unbroken record of 502 consecutive games played. And that’s just for starters.

Tom Adrahatas is coached for some three decades – including teams that went to the U.S. National Championships at the Bantam AAA, Midget AAA, and Junior A levels. A longtime fan of the Chicago Black Hawks and Glenn Hall, he lives in Chicago.


Podcast: The Trail Less Traveled – The Yukon’s Dawson City to Ottawa Stanley Cup Re-enactment

On December 18, 1904 the upstart Dawson City Klondikers began their 4000-mile trek to wrest the Stanley Cup from the Ottawa Silver Seven. Twenty-four days later, after trudging 350 miles behind their dog teams, lurching and rolling down the inside passage, and whiling away endless days on the CPR, the rubber-legged, travel-worn players staggered into Ottawa’s Union Station. In less than thirty-six hours they would meet their fate against the greatest hockey team ever assembled, creating the most enduring legend in hockey history.

Ninety-two years later a team of oldtimer hockey players from Dawson City re-created that epic journey, inviting Don Reddick, American author of Dawson City Seven, to accompany them. As the team wends its way once again through the Yukon wilderness, down Alaska’s panhandle, and across the vast Canadian shield to face the Ottawa Senators Alumni, Reddick weaves his way through the history of the original games, the backdrop of the Klondike gold rush, and the characters of today’s Yukon.

Author Den Reddick tells the story of his trip as part of the re-enactment.


Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Podcast Posting: When Kenora Won the Stanley Cup

Teams have competed for the Stanley Cup for well over a century. But back there in those early days, there was no internet, no network television, and teams were not to be found in outposts such as Florida, Nashville, and Arizona.

And, one year a team called the Kenora Thsitles won the Stanley Cup.

How did the Kenora Thistles become, against all odds, the smallest team and the smallest town ever to win the Stanley Cup?

This famously scrappy hockey team was founded in the rough and tumble town of Kenora, Ontario, at the end of the 19th century. A decade later, playing far away from home, in Montreal, the fiery teenagers whom the Montreal Star dubbed “the fastest that have ever been seen anywhere on ice” out-skated and out-played their older, more experienced opponents to win the coveted hockey championship trophy.

Sports novelist John Danakas and journalist Richard Brignall teamed up in to tell the true story of the ultimate underdogs in this a little-known chapter from Canadian sports history.

In this Journey into Hockey we speak Rick Brignall about the story of Kenora and their Thistles that won the Stanley Cup.


Thursday, April 15, 2010

Podcast: Lord Stanely - The Man Behind the Cup

One of the most important figures in Canadian history, Frederick Arthur Stanley’s most enduring legacy is not his term as the country’s sixth Governor General but the trophy cup that bears his name.

As the playoffs begin, we speak with author and hockey historian Kevin Shea about the man has name is associated with hockey champions. Shea is author of Lord Stanley: The Man Behind the Cup (Key Porter Books; First Edition edition (June 14, 2007)).

In this Journey into Hockey, we explore with Kevin Shea Lord Stanley’s political legacy — his diplomacy in dealing with the United States, his embrace of Canada’s West, and his nimble handling of domestic crises — fleshing out a man who was far more than just an avid sportsman.


Saturday, April 3, 2010

Podcast: A Journey into Hockey - The Pursuit of Hockeyness

These days, it is popular to develope lists of “must do” lists of activities befor one days.

The world of hockey is no exception.

The Pursuit of Hockeyness (Hockey News – Tarnscontinental Books) is a must-do checklist of “everything” hockey fans need to accomplish in their lifetime. There are 99 featured suggestions, each accompanied by a full-colour photo, ranging from interesting places to visit to unique events that have to be experienced to be believed to the colourful people and players that make hockey the game we so love. Items on the list run the gamut of serious, funny, obscure and compelling; and, every NHL team as well as just about every major hockey leagues in North America (and most in Europe, too) is covered.

The Pursuit of Hockeyness celebrates all things hockey by offering fans a compendium of people, places and events that should be seen and/or experienced before the final buzzer sounds (if you know what we mean).

In this Journey into Hockey we speak with project editor Sam McCaig about the book, how the list was made and some of its most compelling activities that hockey fans should experience before they die.


Podcast: A Journey into Hockey - Farewell to Pittsburgh’s Igloo

Starting next season, the Pittsburgh Penguins will be moiving into one of those new state of the art arenas.

Though the club and fans alikes eem to be lookig forward to the move, this also means the end of the place affectionately known as “The Igloo”.

Now called the Mellon Arena, it was for a longtime known as the Civic Auditorium and Civic Arena. The building was constructed in 1961 for use by the Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera.

Over the years, The Igloo has hosted multiple concerts, as well as hockey, basketball, tennis, boxing, wrestling, and soccer matches.

Of course, it is best known as home to the Penguins.

Interestingly, the Arena was the world’s first major indoor sports stadium with a retractable roof.

In this Journey into Hockey, we speak with journalist and Pittsburgh Hockey historian Jim Kubus about the Igloo and what it has meant to folks in Pittsburgh.


Podcast: A Journey into Hockey - Greatest Jerseys of All Time

Dark at home – white on the road ? Or white at home and dark on the road ? Third jerseys ?

What do you favor ?

These are but a few of the regular discussions of hockey fans these days when it comes to hockeys jerseys.

Actually, the traditional term in Canada is that of hockey sweater. But to appeal to its readership in the States, the Hockey News creating a “Collector’s Edition” publication called “Greatest Hockey Jerseys of All Time”.

It’s a great work. Its contents range from a history of the sweater (starting with the Montreal Wanderers, circa 1903-18), to other leagues, long lost teams, Olympics and more.

In this Journey into Hockey, we speak with Brian Costello, Senior Editor for the project, about the publication and the story of the hockey jersey (sweater).


Podcast: A Journey into Hockey - Craig Patrick

He is one of a multi-generational family of hockey royalty – the Patrick family. He is son of Lynn Patrick and the grandson of Lester Patrick (his brother Glenn Patrick also played in the NHL). From 1989–2006, he served 17 years as the general manager of the Pittsburgh, as well the New York Rangers.

But he is also familiar with the Olympics.

Patrick served as Assistant General Manager and Assistant Coach under herb Brooks for the 1980 US Olympic Gold Medal winning hockey team, the Miracle on Ice.

Patrick was also the general manager for the 2002 US Olympic team, also coached by Brooks, which won the silver medal – the first US hockey medal since the 1980 team. This tournament was further notable as it was largely the same roster that underperformed in the 1998 Olympics, yet aging players like Mike Richter and Phil Housley performed well beyond expectations and were named to the 2002 tournament all-star team.

During both Olympic tournaments, the Team USA defeated the Soviets/Russians in the semi-finals.

In this Journey into Hockey, we speak with Craig Patrick about his Olympic experiences, as well as the important role he and his family have played in hockey for over a century.


Thursday, March 18, 2010

Podcast: A Tribute to John Halligan

We pause to recall John Halligan, afriend and a true professional, who passed away on January 20, 2010 at the age of 68.

A giant in the world of hockey, he spent 21 years with the New York Rangers as their Director of Public Relations and Business Manager (Starting in 1963). He later spent a short stint at the N.H.L. as Director of Communications, then went back to the Rangers as Vice President of Communications. He next became Director of Communications for N.H.L. Anniversaries, helping plan and execute the league’s 75th anniversary celebrations in 1991, and the 100th anniversary of the Stanely Cup in 1993, and then Director of Commuications and Special Projects for the N.H.L.

In 2007, following his retirement, he was saluted for his lifetime of service by being presented teh Lester Patrick Award, reognizing his outstanding contributions to hockey in the United States.

As importantly, he was a “tower of strength” as an individual. Ralph Mellanby (from Hockey Night in Canada and the Olympic) described John as “the gold standard”.

Personally, I was one of many for who he provided time, patience, direction and encouragement.

In this Journey into Hockey, we recall the life and legacy of John Halligan with Ranger and network broadcaster Kenny Albert, as well as with longtime hockey journalist Stu Hackel, these days of The New York Times.

Podcast: A Journey into Hockey - Brian McFarlane’s Life in the Booth

Brian McFarlane is one of hockey’s most familiar names.

As a broadcaster, he speant over 25 years with Hockey Night in Canada, and has worked on network telecasts for CBS, NBC, and ESPN. He is also one of North America’s foremost hockey historians and prolific hockey writers. In all, he is author of more than 50 books of hockey, many of them bestsellers.

In this Journey into Hockey, we speak with Brian McFarlane about his most recent work – From The Broadcast Booth, My Life in Hockey Broadcasting (Fenn, 2009), which chronicles some of the interesting people and events in his long career.

Podcast: The Western Hockey League, 1948-1974

Technically it was a minor league, but for hockey fans west of the Mississippi, the Western Hockey League provided major-league entertainment for over 25 years.

Known as the Pacific Coast Hockey League prior to the W.H.L., the league aspired to establish itself as North America’s second major league of hockey, a western counter-part to the Eastern-oriented N.H.L. But it never quite managed to make the jump to the majors.

In its time, though there were some 22 teams based in major American and Canadian cities.

In this Journey into Hockey, Jon C. Stott, Professor Emeritus at the University of Alberta and a hockey historian, speaks with us about his book, Ice Warriors – The Pacific Coast/Western Hockey League – 1948-1974 (Heritage House, 2008).

The book provides a play-by-play of the Western Hocket League, its start, how it came to rival the N.H.L, and what led to its disbanding in 1974. By interviewing former players, coaches, and fans, and examining statistical records, Stott captures the W.H.L.’s glory days and pays tribute to a time when hockey was played with heart.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Podcast: Canada’s Olympic Hockey History

Canada added a new and important page to its hockey and national history in the recently completed Vancouver Olympic Winter Games.

The men’s hockey team overtime final win for the gold against the U.S. is already a classic. The tournament was thrilling throughout. And, the women provided an equally inspiring level of skill and commitment. Their accomplishments are second to none.

These recently completed games are but the most recent chapter in a story that started close to a cenury ago.

Andrew Podnieks, author of more than 50 books on hockey, has chronicled the history of Canadian Olympic hockey in his book, Canada’s Olympic Hockey History, 1920-2010 (Fenn; 2009).

It’s a fascinating and diverse story. Canada’s Olympic hockey team has taken many twists and turns over the years.

In this Journey intio Hockey, we speak with Andrew Podnieks about his book and the history it chronicles.

As Canada celebrates the wins of 2010, the earlier contributions of the likes of William Hewitt, Father David Bauer, Dave King and Cassie Campbell should not be forgotten.

Broadcast: February 15 (Before Canada’s 2010 wins)


Thursday, February 25, 2010

On a rare night, Canada gathered to watch one game (Globe and Mail)

From The Globe and Mail:

By Stephen Brunt
The Globe and Mail
February 24, 2010

VANCOUVER - There aren't really that many hockey nights in Canada, at least not in the way we imagine them.

One country, gathered ‘round a game; perhaps it was true every week way back in the mists of time, in the one or two channel world, television on Saturday night as the national hearth, a place where friends and families came together, the way they came together to worship other gods the following morning.

But that world long ago was blown to smithereens, and now we live in a time of vast and near infinite choice; when you can watch anything from anywhere anytime, on your television, your computer, on your phone, and when nothing is really special there is not much reason to assemble anywhere anytime.

Except on rare nights like this, except for a game like this, when you want company, when it feels so much better to be with your tribe.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Podcast: The Canada Cup of Table Top Hockey

The Vancouver Winter Olympics are grabbing most of the headlines these days (and rightfully so). The hockey competitions there are expected to be lively in both the men’s and women’s divisions.

But there is another major sporting event taking place in Canada over the coming days. It is the Canada Cup of Table Top Hockey – bringing together top players of the game from Canada, the U.S. and the world. It will be taking place in Ottawa, starting this February and finishing in April.

We speak with John Cooke of the Canadian Table Top Hockey Association about the upcoming Canada Cup – who plays and what’s it all about.


Podcast: The Fever Season

Over the past few months, there has been much written and spoken about the H1N1 flu.

In a hockey sense, parallels were immediately drawn to a season a long time ago that was impacted by the flu.

The year was 1919 and the epidemic was that of what became known as the Spanish Flu. Millions died. In the hockey world, one of its victims was Joe Hall of the Montreal Canadiens. In fact, after Hall’s death the Stanley Cup final was cancelled.

Eric Zweig is our guest.

He has written a fascinated historical novel of the period called “Fever Season”. He speaks with us about that year that the flu hit, and about what happened both on and off the ice.

Eric Zweig is Managing Editor with Dan Diamond Associates (consulting editors to the National Hockey League), he has written about sports and sports history for many major publications including the Toronto Star and the Glober and Mail. He has written non-fiction sports books for young people.


Friday, January 29, 2010

It’s Not Hockey, It’s Bandy (NY Times)

From The New York Times:

Published: January 28, 2010

Bandy, a forerunner of hockey, dates back 200 years.

It is played on a rink was 110 yards long and 60 yards wide, about the size of a soccer field. Each side has 11 players, and they pass and shoot a small orange ball, not a puck, toward the 7-foot-high, 11-foot-wide net.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Passing: John Halligan

A recipient of the Lester Patrick Award, a pro and a friend.

More later. For now:

A Tribute from Stan Fischler:

New York Times Hockey Blog Tribute from Stu Hackel: c

Obituary from the Bergen Record:

Monday, January 18, 2010

Habs' past glory remains relevant (Montreal Gazette)

From The Montreal Gazette:

By DAVE STUBBS, The Gazette
January 18, 2010

There is a generation of Canadiens fans that is sick of history, of hearing about the glorious past of a hockey club that is nearly 17 years removed from its most recent championship.

To this group, the Canadiens were born at the Bell Centre, the 87 years that went before pretty much irrelevant. That is their loss, of course, for the past of anything in our lives must be quilted with its present and its future.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Podcast: The Day the Pros Faced Off with the Cons

The Day the Pros Faced Off with the Cons: Marquette’ Most Infamous Game – 1954 Outdoor Game: Detroit Red Wings vs. Marquette Prison Pirates

NHL’ers playing hockey outdoors is getting much publicity these days. They’ve put down ice and promoted hockey in places such as Fenway Park, Wrigley Field, Orchard Park, N.Y. And who can forget the one that started the recent – that outdoor game in Edmonton between the Canadiens & Oilers in arctic temperatures.

Garnering less attention these days is a unique outdoor game that occurred in 1954. It pitted the Championship-caliber Detroit Red Wings and a prison team in Marquette, Michigan. It was dubbed the Pros versus the Cons.

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