Sunday, September 20, 2009

Original Six Vintage Hockey

The NHL Network has a wonderful show titled “Vintage Hockey”. Many times the e games are not what I would really consider vintage. Sometimes, though, there are some GREAT ones. Like yesterday...

The match-up involved two Original Six teams: Detroit Red Wings and Chicago Blackhawks. This traditional rivalry was a total delight to watch and listen to...It brought back so many nostalgic memories. And...I'm smiling as I write this. What a game..

Where do I start? (Yes, I know...the beginning is always a good idea). Well, the game was played at the Olympia (Olympia Stadium) in Detroit. It was Game 5 of the Stanley Cup semi-finals. The game was played on April 11, 1965. That's right...1965. Get down!

Even though the Red Wings won the game, 4-2, the Blackhawks went on to win the semi-final series in seven games. The Hawks then advanced to the Stanley Cup Finals and faced the Montreal Canadiens. The Hawks and Canadiens went seven games, with the Canadiens finally clinching the Stanley Cup Championship.

Bruce Martin was the play-by-play announcer. There was no color announcer. All we heard about was the game. Play-by-play. Absolutely perfect.

Here are some other facts I jotted down:

The indoor temperature was 80 degrees. There was steamy ice. The announcer stated, “Do not adjust your sets. The fog comes to you from our sponsors.” Too cool. By the end of the game, there was steam rising from the ice. The camera shot to the crowd throughout the game. The men had removed their jackets and were down to their shirts and ties. As the game progressed, men removed their ties and opened up their top one or two shirt buttons. It was just great to see.

Center ice consisted of two Detroit Red Wings logos. That was all. No wordage or clutter.

Norm Ullman was chosen as the player of the game. He was interviewed after the game. He broke the all-time scoring record for two goals in five seconds during a post-season game. As he was interviewed at game's end, he stated ..”the ice was real slow”.

The other two players of the game were Bobby Hull and Roger Crozier. Wow...

Some of the players of the game included, are you ready for this?!....Phil Esposito, Bobby Hull, Glenn Hall, Warren Moon, Bill Hay, Bill Gadsby, Ted Lindsey, Gordie Howe, Marcel Provonost, Warren Godrey, Larry Jeffrey, Peter Mavelich and Pat LaFontaine. It was pure nirvana watching that line-up.

There was a lull in the game when Glenn Hall, Hawks goalie, needed a “lingerie stop”. His suspenders broke. “Whenever there is a lingerie stop..it seems to involve goalies,” stated the announcer. As Hall went to the bench to have his suspenders repaired, Bobby Hull shot a rubber ball into the goal. The crowd went wild. :)

A Hawks player pushed Ted Lindsay. Lindsay whipped around and the two got into a fight (sorry, I didn't get the Hawks player..I was too wrapped up in watching Lindsey. I do know that wasn't Hull or Esposito). Lindsay received a two-minute penalty for roughing.

A few minutes later, a Hawks player tested Gordie Howe. Howe got even by hooking the guy. Gordie then joined his buddy Ted in the penalty box for two minutes. It was GREAT seeing Howe catch up with the guy who tested him. After hooking the guy, Howe stood there with a glare in his eyes and his hockey stick in the ready position. He was in the cross check mode. Just great...

Way to go NHL Network. Thanks...:)

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