Top’o’the morning to you, dear hockey fans! (Sorry)
It’s Saint Patrick’s Day and you know what that means: novice drinkers making fools of themselves, the questionable misuse of green dye and police officers making their quotas in DUI charges. Oh, let’s not forget getting pinched.
Anyway, with this goofy holiday in mind, it’s not surprising that there are a few quirky news items today. Let’s start the medley off with something that’s not specifically related to the holiday (although, come on, there is Patrick Kane). Here’s the Making Sure We’re Wearing Green edition of Odd Bounces.
First, the Chicago Blackhawks appeared on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno” last night. Check out the video:
You know, Kane and Toews have solid comic timing. For hockey players, anyway.
It’s a big tilt between the Pittsburgh Penguins and the New Jersey Devils tonight as the Devils can re-claim the Atlantic division lead with a regulation win. The real story, though, is that the Devils are rocking their retro green-white-and-red jerseys for the game. Tom Gulitti of the Fire & Ice blog has the story.
The Devils will wear their vintage red, white and green jerseys Wednesday night against the Pittsburgh Penguins for the first time since the 1992 preseason.
While wearing the red, white and green from 1982-93 to 1991-92, the Devils compiled a 285-422-93 record (last column all ties). Since changing to the red, white and black they are 742-430-178 (last column ties and OT/shootout losses).
Why was the impish Clancy wearing this jersey? The Leafs were hosting “King Clancy Night.” Clancy was as big a star as Toronto has ever seen. They honored him with the night, the jersey, and a number of stereotypical gifts that would keep any Irish eyes smiling.
Several junior players stepped on to the ice through large potato props. Red Horner emerged from a boxing glove. New York Ranger’s star Bill Cook hid in a shamrock. All the while the Knights of Columbus Minstrel Band played Irish music.
Ah, the good old stereotypical days. Feel free to share other St. Patrick’s Day related hockey memories and other cabbage-scented bits of nostalgia in the comments.
Kinkaid blanks Kings, Devils move into playoff position
When the New Jersey Devils shut down a team 1-0, it’s usually with Cory Schneider in net.
Their workhorse got the afternoon off against the Los Angeles Kings on Sunday, yet Keith Kinkaid did his Schneider impression, grabbing his first NHL shutout in the process.
It was a low-event game with just 46 combined shots on goal, but Kinkaid had to work, stopping all 28 shots. To give you an idea of how tight this game was, the only tally was credited to David Schlemko on the power play.
This gives the Devils three straight wins. They managed to climb into third place in the Metropolitan Division, although New Jersey’s edge is a little misleading; the Islanders trail them by one standings point while holding three games in hand.
That leaves the Islanders in the bottom wild card spot, while the Penguins aren’t so far behind either.
Third in Metro: Devils – 65 points with 57 games played
Second wildcard: Islanders – 64 points, 54 GP
First spot outside the East playoffs: Penguins – 63 points, 54 GP
So, the Devils’ hold of a playoff spot is a bit tenuous, yet the bottom line is that they’re staying in the mix.
The Kings, meanwhile, remain comfortably in first in the Pacific.
WATCH LIVE: Boston Bruins at Detroit Red Wings on NBC
You know, with Connor McDavid hogging so much attention, it’s about time that Jack Eichel provided us with another awesome goal.
That tally came at the Colorado Avalanche’s (and especially Semyon Varlamov‘s) expense as that was the Buffalo Sabres first shot of the game.
Patrick Roy apparently felt like this just wasn’t Varlamov’s afternoon, as Colorado’s head coach decided to pull him after Varly allowed two goals on as many shots. Evander Kane nabbed the other goal for Buffalo.
You can watch the goal in the video above, which reminds us that “Eichel Tower” might not be a unique pun.
To be fair to Varlamov, Calvin Pickard has already allowed a goal as well. The Sabres are currently off to a 3-0 lead, and maybe a small roll considering how well they played against Montreal on Friday?
Update: The Sabres ended up beating the Avalanche 4-1.