Random Facts with a Local Junker

Junk Removal KatyOne look at our site and you know that we are serious about hockey. Most importantly, our favorite team, the Cambridge Hornets.

As you can imagine, I will talk anyone’s ear off about my team that I can. However, the last place I expected find a fellow fan was when I hired a local junk removal Katy company.

I was as shocked as you are now. Here I am, deep in the heart of Texas, and here comes my technician wearing a team jersey; I knew I was in good hands.

In fact, they wound up knowing more about the sport as a whole than I did, and I walked away with some great information. Below are some of the more memorable tidbits I picked up during our conversation.

No One Knows Who Made Hockey

I mean, someone had to have known someone eventually. However, those records likely became lost to the sands of time.

Some believe that the game has existed in some form or another since about the 1700s. Although it’s more likely the supposed first game happened in Ontario in the middle of the 1800s.

Even the first game of indoor hockey gets attributed to the Canadians. In 1875, a group of university students made an indoor version with two nine-player teams and probably a lot of bruises.

Other sports have a definitive starting point. It would seem as if hockey, however, suffers from the same memory problem that baseball has in recalling its first game.

Did Gordie Howe Have to Face His Fears?

Although it’s challenging to find a source to back it up, for years it has been rumored that Mr. Hockey himself had to face more than stiff competition on the ice.

Imagine showing up to work tomorrow and finding out that your desk was going to remain covered in spiders. If the suggestions are accurate, that’s what Gordie Howe was up against every day.

They say that Gordie suffered from cryophopbia, or fear of frigid temperatures, which often includes ice. Although it’s a frightening condition to suffer from as a hockey player, his impressive 801 goals prove that fear is not a factor for Howe.

Toronto Traded Lovers

Is there anything more special than the love one feels for hockey? If you were a hockey player with Conn Smythe as your team owner, the answer was required to remain a resounding “no”.

Anyone who tied the knot during the season got traded and never heard from again. Imagine having your career ruined all because you fell in love!

Smythe felt that players giving their love and attention towards anything but the season was a traitor. It goes to show that the heart wants what it wants.

Best Hockey Towns in the US

It’s a great time to be a hockey fan in America. Last year saw the total attendance in the NHL increase to more than 25 million. This is an all-time high that included what was closely the biggest crowd to ever watch a live hockey game. So where are the best towns to be a hockey?

Grand Forks, North Dakota (NCAA – University of North Dakota)

The University of North Dakota is one of college hockey’s real powerhouse programs. It has earned over 14 conference championships, made over 19 Frozen Four appearances and earned over six national championships, the 2nd highest championship total after Michigan.

Hanover, New Hampshire (NCAA – Dartmouth Big Green)

This college town is burrowed along the Connecticut River in wonderful central New Hampshire. While the main village’s population is just over 8,500, when the Dartmouth hockey team takes to the ice, there are, on average, more than 2,000 fans in attendance. That is more than a quarter more than the population of the town.

Lewiston, New York (NCAA – Niagara Purple Eagles)

One of many top hockey towns situated in close proximity to our hockey-loving neighbors up north, Lewiston is along the Niagara River in upstate New York, just a little ways from hockey haven, Canada. Though they have only been a varsity-level team since ‘96, the Niagara Purple Eagles hockey team has arose as a force not to be messed with in college hockey, winning their conference 4 times since 2000 and making an appearance at the NCAA tournaments repeatedly over that time.

Houghton, Michigan (NCAA – Michigan Tech Huskies)

For hockey fans who enjoy the winter time, Houghton is the town you want to be in. It averages more than 100 days every year in which the temperature doesn’t even reach freezing. Thanks to the closeness of Lake Superior, the town get more than 150 of snow every year. With that kind of weather, the only thing to do is to welcome the cold, as well as the sport that go with it.

 

Best-Looking NHL Players

Hockey season is here which means fans are getting ready to see some

outstanding ice action and experience some real hometown pride. The rest of us are just looking forward to seeing hot looking men play with sticks.

Tyler Seguin

Regardless your reason for viewing, you can’t disagree that there’s a lot of good looking, talented men to interest non-sports and sports fans alike. And fortunately for you, here’s a list of some of hottest players in the NHL. Hope you enjoy it!

Tyler Seguin
Team: Dallas Stars

This Texas hottie is originally from Brampton, Ontario. With the beard, full tattoo sleeves, and boyish good looks, Seguin no doubt about it makes fans swoon. An additional bonus is to go take a peek at his training photos which can be found online!

Henrik Lundqvist
Team: New York Rangers

Swedish hunk Henrik Lundqvist’s definitive good looks are indicative of a bygone time. Maybe he should have thought about leaving the New York Rangers for a part in Mad Men? Regardless, there’s no refuting that this cutie has some outstanding features.

Jonathan Bernier
Team: Colorado Avalanche

Ok, let’s keep it real, we all love a family man. And if you follow Bernier on social media, you’ll see how much he loves his family, making him even more attractive. Aside from his boy-next-door, groomed good looks, are of course, his tatts.

PK Subban
Team:  Nashville Predators

P.K. Subban

Likely the biggest heart in the NHL, PK Subban is famous for his endless charitable work in Montreal (which is where he used to be). The Torontonian is now doing his hockey thing down south, but we still adore him, his fly personality, his pretty smile, and just everything about him, really.

Erik Gudbranson
Team: Vancouver Canucks

Erik Gudbranson’s social media paints a portrait of a courageous spirit, since he seems to adore traveling. United that with his winning smile and tatts, and you have yourself a true hottie.

What is Street Hockey?

Street hockey is a sport consistent of teams and it is a variation of ice hockey. It is also known as road hockey and ball hockey. Not like ice hockey, which is played on an ice surface with ice skates, street hockey is played on a cement or asphalt surface, and players wear shoes or inline skates to play. The sport started in Canada and is now played in over 55 countries around the world.

Street hockey is played with similar sticks that are used for ice hockey. Theirs is variations of the sport: a puck or ball is used for the game. The pucks used are especially designed to move fine on hard surfaces.

Since street hockey comes from ice hockey, the goal of the sport is the same, which is to get plenty of goals. The team with the largest number of goals at the end of the game is the winner. Goals are made by striking the puck or ball through the net.

The International Street and Ball Hockey Federation (ISBHF) is the largest governing body for the sport, which holds many international tournaments for various age groups for both women and men. ISBHF also holds a Men’s Masters Tournament for males over the age of 40. There are also many regional level tournaments held in Canada and the US.

Similar Sports

Ball Hockey — like ice hockey, but played on a non-ice surface and by foot.

Roller Hockey — explanation of the umbrella sport name which includes inline hockey and a rink

Rink Hockey — roller hockey with quad skates.

Floor Hockey — indoor (non-ice) hockey sports resulting from field and ice hockey.

Floorball — a variation of floor hockey.

Beikou Tarkbei (aka Daur Hockey) – a team sport distinctive to the Daur ethnic group in Mongolia that has plenty of likenesses to field hockey.

 

Men’s Hockey Team Favored to Win Gold at the 2018 Olympics

The 2018 Winter Olympics is just a few months away. While we know where the NHL and their players will be, that leaves a lot of rumors about how the other 12 countries going to the Olympics will do.

Russia’s last gold medal in men’s hockey was in 1988 and it was stilled referred to as the Soviet Union. They’ve been shut out of the medal podium for the last three years at the Olympics. Their last medal was in 2002 and it was a bronze.

It’s not a surprise to see Russia lead the medal odds this early before the Olympics. Russia is bound to get a boost from the KHL for the games, a professional asset the United States and Canada won’t get because of the absence of the NHL.

The great quantity of talent that goes along with being the 2nd biggest hockey league on earth is the reason Team Russia is the top favorite for the gold medal.

It is difficult not to feel a little sad for Alex Ovechkin. The forward is having an amazing start in the 2017-18 season, but he’s already left himself to toeing the NHL’s line of skipping the 2018 Olympics. Team Russia’s odds at winning the Olympic gold have never been this good and Ovechkin isn’t going to participate.

As for North America, the high odds are a testament to the continent’s talent pool even outside of professional leagues. Team Canada won’t have the help of Connor McDavid or Sidney Crosby, but the it is the best on earth for a reason.

Team USA has given the names for the Deutschland Cup. It will have Brian Gionta and Ryan Malone.

As February comes up, the odds for the 2018 Olympics will probably change. Team Russia’s place as the favorite will certainly stay the same.

The NHL Teams that Love to Fight the Most

There are a couple of things in the NHL that can do to get any fan to jump out of their seats and scream: a goal and a fight. People have argued for years about the significance of fighting in the game and we know both sides of the argument. Th fact remains that fans love hockey fights. If you don’t think so, go to a hockey game and see what goes down when gloves are dropped.

You don’t see 20,000 folks hiding their eyes, you’ll see all 20,000 folks cheering on their feet. You’ll also see team players tapping their sticks on the boards or the ice in gratitude of the two fighters. We’re not here to argue that fighting does or doesn’t have a place in hockey. We’re just here to look at the NHL teams that are throwing plenty of fists.

When looking at which teams fight the most, you’ll find that they don’t typically have one player who’s just out there dropping gloves left and right. It’s a change from the old days when every team would have a designated enforcer who was ready to fight, any time anywhere. Today’s teams have skill players who, while they are not afraid to fight, don’t make it a top priority. So, which teams are fighting the most during NHL season?

Winnipeg Jets

The Winnipeg Jets may be at the bottom of the Central Division standings, but there’s one thing that they lead their division in, and that’s fighting majors.

Ottawa Senators

The presence of the Ottawa Senators on this list may shock some folks, but it shouldn’t. Over the last couple of years, the Senators haven’t been shy about dropping the gloves and letting the fists fly.

Philadelphia Flyers

If you’re a hockey fan, you kind of expect the Flyers to be on this list year after year. Flyers’ owner Ed Snider has put together a team that has been physical ever since the early days of the franchise (the late 60s).

The Top Paid Players in the NHL

The NHL is in a bit of a change when it comes to how much salary their top players are making.

Before the new collective bargaining agreement (CBA), teams made the most of a loophole that let players to be paid more than they typically would under the salary cap. That loophole created some skewed salaries.

Montreal Canadiens® – Shea Weber

The new CBA put a restriction on that loophole. Nonetheless, there are numerous players today with a contract that pays a lot of up-front money. These gentlemen are typically the players who are still in the first years of their lucrative deal.

This list of the NHL’s highest-paid players has seven centers, eight wingers, two goaltenders, and three defensemen.

  • #1 Shea Weber — $14 million
    Team: Nashville Predators
    Position: Defenseman
  • #2t Patrick Kane — $13.8 million
    Team: Chicago Blackhawks
    Position: Right Wing
  • 2t Patrick Kane — $13.8 million
    Team: Chicago Blackhawks
    Position: Center
  • #4 Sidney Crosby — $12 million
    Team: Pittsburgh Penguins
    Position: Center
  • #5t Alex Ovechkin— $10 million
    Team: Washington Capitals
    Position: Left Wing
  • #5t Henry Lundqvist— $10 million
    Team: New York Rangers
    Position: Goaltender
  • #7t Evgeni Malkin— $9.5 million
    Team: Pittsburg Penguins
    Position: Center
  • #7t Eric Staal— $9.5 million
    Team: Carolina Hurricanes
    Position: Left Wing
  • #9 Ryan Getzlaf — $9.25 million
    Team: Anaheim Ducks
    Position: Center
  • #10t Zach Parise— $9 million
    Team: Minnesota Wild
    Position: Defenseman Left Wing
  • #10t Ryan Suter— $9 million
    Team: Minnesota Wild
    Position: Defenseman
  • #10t Corey Perry— $9 million
    Team: Anaheim Ducks
    Position: Right Wing
  • #10t Claude Giroux— $9 million
    Team: Philadelphia Flyers
    Position: Center
  • #14 Patrice Bergeron — $8.75 million
    Team: Boston Bruins
    Position: Center
  • #15 Sergei Bobrovsky — $8.5 million
    Team: Columbus Blue Jackets
    Position: Goaltender
  • #16t Derek Stepan — $8 million
    Team: New York Rangers
    Position: Center

Reasons NHL is Passing On the 2018 Olympics

The positives don’t outweigh the negatives and that’s the bottom line why the NHL is passing on the 2018 Olympics.

The NHL knows the arguments for being a part of the Olympics: endorsing the League, increasing the sport, giving players and fans an incredible experience. It knows why its players want to go to the 2018 Olympics. They are similar reasons the NHL went to the 1998 Olympics for the first time. Ironically, Gary Bettman was Commissioner then as well.

The NHL has been to the Olympics five times and has never seen any real evidence of a real impact on the business or sport. To tell the truth, it has seen a negative impact.

Negative attitude built among the Board of Governors over the years. The NHL wasn’t going to the 2014 Olympics but went anyway. Negative sentiment had reached the tipping point.

The NHL knew the players wanted to go to PyeongChang. The League held a meeting to the International Ice Hockey Federation, the NHL Players’ Association, and the International Olympic Committee. But no one gave anything to sway the Board that going to PyeongChang would be in the best interest of the League and with the Stanley Cup Playoffs coming up, it’s was time to move on.

“A number of months have gone by and no pertinent dialogue has materialized,” the NHL said in a statement. “Instead, the IOC has now communicated that the NHL’s participation in 2022 is conditioned on its participation in 2018. The NHLPA has verified that it has no interest in having a discussion that might make the Olympics more appealing.

To create clarity among conflicting reports and speculation, this will confirm our plan to proceed with finalizing our 2017-18 regular season schedule without any breaks for the 2018 Olympics. This matter is now officially closed.”

Is Hockey Underrated?

Hockey season is typically overshadowed by NFL playoffs, the Super Bowl, and the NCAA men’s basketball tourney. Most folks don’t know how thrilling the sport of hockey is, so if you don’t already follow it, here are a few reasons why you ought to be.

Players are fantastic athletes

Hockey players have the speed and strength of other pro athletes, but what makes it even more remarkable is that it all happens on a half inch metal blade of their skate. And if you ice skate, you know how hard it is.

Their individuality

Hockey players are similar to fingerprints. No two are the same. If you’ve been a hockey fan for a long time, you don’t need your glasses to tell which player is which. Every player shoots, skates, and celebrates a goal in his own way.

They’re tough

Hockey players are famous for having some real gnarly teeth. Regardless of how hard he is slashed, bruised, or hit, he is always back out on the ice in position.

The rivalries

Now you may back one team over another. Like football, baseball, and basketball, hockey rivalries aren’t any different. Well-known ones are the Canadiens vs. Bruins, Red Wings vs. Blackhawks, and the Penguins vs. Flyers. And let’s not get started with the two team out of New York. When the Rangers and the Islanders come together, there’s always some incredible goals, hard hitting, and plenty of trash talking.

The fights

You may see some pushing and shoving in other sports, but none of it amounts to the hockey fights. It’s a fast-paced sport, so it’s no surprise that the players can be a little aggressive on the ice when they don’t agree on a call. It’s an all-out fight and will always bring a little bit of flavor to the game.

To Every Annoying Hockey Player Parent

You know who you are. You’re the one who knows everything, yet adds nothing.  You are the one who finds something wrong with everything, the coach, the players, the team as a whole. I am embarrassed that you wear the same logo as my son because your actions aren’t what I want being part of a sports team to teach him.

You probably don’t know this, but I stand off to the side for a reason. When the season is in full swing, the coach, who happens to be my husband, has to make decisions to give the team an advantage. It makes you mad when your son isn’t the center of attention. You need to ask yourself: are you here so your son can be a team member or you want personal glory?

I just want to know because we (parents and players) are here to play on a sports team. If personal glory is your goal, you might want to play tennis or golf?

The coach is the individual who makes decisions about this group, creating the best combinations of players. He isn’t here to put you and your son on display. Yes, your son is talented, but so is ever other child on the team, in one way or another.

My husband, the coach, spends his night coming up with exercises to help the weakest link on the team build up the self-confidence needed to contribute to the team. If I were a guessing woman, I would say that it’s the same child you bad mouth on your way home in your car.

And oh by the way, that child can hear what you are yelling out about him from the stands. With every negative, condescending thing you say, the coach (my husband) has to work a little harder to build back up the child’s confidence so he can play the game.

It’s sad that I need to remind you that these are children we are talking about.