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old time hockey

fight.gifI'm reading Fishticks: The Rise and Fall of The New York Islanders. Coincidentally, Metro TV was showing an Islander retrospective today, going back to the good old days of four Stanley Cups and the greatest team ever assembled on ice. Gillies, Nystrom, Bossy, Trottier. The ultimate team.

I was there when the Islanders one their second championship, against the Minnesota North Stars. Watching the team circle the ice with the cup held up high, standing right there watching it - that was one of my best sports fan moments ever.

I miss the old days of hockey. I miss the guys without helmets, Ron Duguay's hair flying in the wind, bare-knuckle punches landing on hardened heads.

I miss the bench-clearing brawls, sticks and gloves littering the ice, Billy Smith leading the charge from the opposite end of the rink, goaltenders locked in battle. I miss the old Flyers and Bruins, the ones who would climb into the stands to beat up on fans. I miss the rivalry between the Rangers and the Islanders, one that is just a shadow of its former self, with none of the vile emotion that used to carry it.

I can never get enough of watching Clark Gillies one-punch Terry O'Reilly into neverland. Old Time Hockey. Back when men were men and the Islanders uniform did not have the Gorton's fisherman on it.

Call me a neanderthal, I don't care. I miss Bobby Clarke and Dave Semenko and Dave "Tiger" Williams and Dave Schultz.

The Islanders were ruined by bad management and ownership who did not understand, or care about, the fans. Hockey was ruined by people who did not understand what they fans came to the game for. Sure, a smooth-skating, high-scoring game is exciting. But given the opportunity to watch Gretzky slink his way around the boards and try to evade being checked because he might, you know, break, and the opportunity to once again see a game that lies just short of something out of Slapshot, I'll take a combination of the two.

Old time hockey. Eddie Shore.

Comments

hey ..if your searching for some reminders of the good ole times come to MSG for a Rangers game....we still yell "potvan sucks!!"

haha dont hate me i miss the old days too. see: Eddie Shack

http://www.sabresalumni.com/2001/shack_eddie.php

And how can you not miss Garry Howatt?! I once babysat for Bobby Nystrom, it was, in my teen years, the greatest moment of my life. I was there when they won the first time. Used to cruise past Clark Gilles house every day. And god I was in love with Chico Resch and Billy Carroll and John Tonelli!

Billy Smith, the best goalie ever to clear a net at knee level! I have not heard his name in quite a while.

I thought the guy on the Islanders' 3rd jersey was CAPTAIN HIGH LINER!

Ever been to sea, matey?

Insert seamen jokes here...

Oh my God - I could go on and on! I met Butch Goring in IHOP in Commack once! He used to drive a yellow Ferrari. g Mike Bossy lived down the block from my friend Debbie. And Faith doesn't remember, but we were out to dinner once at an Italian restaurant in Plainview and Brent and Duane Sutter were sitting a couple of tables away.

My aunt Penny worked for the Islanders and she was good friends with Denis and Jean Potvin. I was over a couple of times in the 70's when they were there and I just remember them all sitting in the living room smoking pot (not that I knew what it was back then! LOL)

The best was when I got to hold the Stanley Cup! My dad used to have an office at Roosevelt Raceway in with the barns (he was (and still is) the accountant for a lot of the owners, trainers and jockeys. His friend John called me up and ordered me to come to his barn. I walk in, and there's Billy Carrol and the Cup. It was SO cool! Of course I didn't have a camera. sigh

I hated the Rangers! LOL The Sasson boys! Ooh La La - Dugay, Maloney, Beck, Greschner... :) And for every "Potvin beats his wife" there was always a "Shoot the puck, Barry" or "1940"

We all hated the other helmetless wonder Gordie Lane, but that's because he sucked!

I'm writing a book here, aren't I! I should stop now...

OK I'm an old Sabres fan who grew up in Ranger-land, but I remember listening to Islander games and they had the best play by play man (don't hate me--I can't recall his name right now). The great thing about him was he'd never mention the opposing team's players by name. The guy on the ice could be a living legend--it didn't matter who he was or what he did, he was just "the Montreal player" or whatever. Priceless.

I know that feeling Michele. I was at game 6 in the 1980 finals - Islanders / Flyers and was sitting right behind the goal when Nystrom scored in overtime. What an incredible feeling...

Thanks for bringing back such fond memories - like when Dave Schultz went after Trotts and Gilles floored him. Ahhhh, the good old days...

Hard for any rivalry to top Montreal/Quebec.... especially the vicious playoff that featured back to back benchclearing brawls. After the first, in which Louis Sleigher broke Jean Hamel's jaw, the ref sent them to their dressing rooms early to end the second period. But someone forgot to notify the teams of who had been tossed from the game for that one, so when Montreal came out from watching Hamel get worked on in the dressing room for 20 minutes, there was Sleigher warming up for Quebec..... The combined brawls probably went on for over an hour, and even had inter-family violence (Dale vs. Mark Hunter).

Calgary/Edmonton had its moments, too.

That, and watching the coverage of the World Junior hockey brawl (Canada v. Russia) in Piestany. Not for the brawl itself, but the CBC studio coverage, with Brian Williams moaning on about how this brawl (provoked by the RUssians) was a black mark in Canadian history, and Don Cherry visibly getting closer to comitting murder on live TV with every sentence.

IMHO, nowadays hockey only get fun to watch once playoff's start. Until then, it really not that exciting.

Sorry but this may just piss you off--

GO WINGS!!!!

How can you compare the Islanders to the 97 Wings???

Thanks for bringing up one of the tragedies of my formative years: my North Stars losing in their first trip to the Stanley Cup finals- and to the f*****g Islanders!?!

Yes, the Islanders were a dynasty, and no, the North Stars really had no business in the Finals, but they could have at least put up a fight....

Fear not...hockey season is a mere 5-6 weeks hence. Game on, eh??

I miss Rod Langway and all the rest of the "grandfather clause" old-timers who refused to don helmets until their retirements.

Uh, the Wings? GO DUCKS!!!!

And Potvin sucks!

I miss the old rivalries, too. Although they're still there when the Caps play the Flyers and Islanders (who we OWN, by the way-- one win in the last couple years!). The rivalry with Pittsburgh died out b/c they're just too sad for words now.

I miss those days of bodies flying, punches being throw, teeth missing hockey. It would be such a better game if the refs would just get out of the way and let all hell break loose!

Old time hockey. Eddie Shore.

You know Toe Blake?

I miss watching Mick Vukota beat the crap out of somebody, serve his 5 minutes, and then come back on the ice and pop the guy again not 5 seconds after he got out of the box. That was hockey.

Old time hockey...how about 1997, first meeting between Detroit and Colorado of the season at the Joe. Darren McCarty drops his gloves at center ice, before the puck is even dropped to start the game, and pounds LeMieux in retaliation for LeMieux smashing Kris Draper's face into the dasher in the prior year's playoff.

So glad I watch hockey (read that Wings hockey) all season long.

Looks like I'm a lone voice here, but I never liked fighting as entertainment in hockey. I have no problem with it happening as a natural result of players policing themselves when someone gets out of line, but constant fighting as a way to entertain the fans makes no sense to me. I also think it turns off most potential new fans.

For hockey to grow, I think we need to make some rules changes to lessen the effectiveness of the neutral zone trap. There has to be a happy middle ground between the 8 - 6 games of the 80's and the 1 - 0 overtime games of today...

Oh man, the North Stars. grumble stupid owner moving them to Texas grumble

Gotta add a Go Wings!! here though. Sorry!

Where and how did the Ranger whistle cheer "Potvan Sucks" come from?

POTVIN SUCKS!!!

MIKE BOSSY WAS A CHERRY PICKER WHO WOULD HAVE BEEN NOTHING WITHOUT A CENTER LIKE TROTTIER!!!

BILLY SMITH WAS A SCRUPLE-LESS GOON!!! I hated that cheap, nasty, piece of shit for the countless cheap shots he threw when he played, and I hate him for the fact that he made me applaud Tiger Williams (another player I despised) when Williams planted a well-deserved slash on the back of Smith's head. I wish I could have seen that game.

Whew! I feel better now.