Tuesday, September 29, 2009
The Zürcher Schlittschuh Club (Zurich Skating Club) or ZSC Lions will take on the NHL's Chicago Blackhawks in the second annual Victoria Cup today at 2:15 PM EST in a game televised live on the Blackhawks website and on TV by the NHL Network at 8 PM EST tonight.
Last year's Victoria Cup game was a thrilling game, as the European representative and 2008 European Champions Cup winners Metallurg Magnitogorsk came out determined to show they could compete at the NHL level. Magnitogorsk did just that, beating the New York Rangers Henrik Lundqvist just 88 seconds into the game. They would add another before the first period ended. Metallurg would their lead to a surprising three goal margin at the game's halfway point before the Rangers would pull one back with less than thirty second left in the second on a two-man advantage.
In the third period the Rangers come roaring back and came within one on another power-play goal at 5:45 and Chris Drury tied the game at 3-3 with yet another powerplay goal less than five minutes later. The Rangers would win the game in dramatic fashion with the winning goal coming off an intercepted pass by Ryan Callahan, which sent him in on a breakaway to score with just 20 seconds left in the game for a 4-3 win.
The ZSC Lions won the right to be the European representative in the Victoria Cup by defeating last year's European representative Metallurg Magnitogorsk in the final of the 2009 Champions Hockey League.
"It's obviously an immense opportunity for ZSC to play not only against an NHL club, but against one of the Original Six teams. It's not only a great thing for our club but also for Swiss club hockey as a whole," said Sean Simpson, head coach of the Lions.
ZSC was founded in 1930 and became the ZSC Lions in 1997 after a merger with the Grasshoppers Club ice hockey team, and have won six Swiss Championships in 1936, 1949, 1961, 2000, 2001 and 2008. They have also won the Continental Cup twice in 2001 and 2002, the Spengler Cup in 1944 and 1945, the Swiss Cup in 1960 and 1961 in addition to their 2009 Champions League title.
They have announced a special jersey for today's game versus Chicago, one free of the usual European advertising to highlight the club's colors and logo.
Today's featured jersey is the Reebok ZSC Lions 2009 Victoria Cup jersey as shown below by head coach Sean Simpson.
Here are highlights of the second game of the of two games that made up the 2009 Champions League Final. The first game ended in a 2-2 tie, making the second game a winner-take-all final between the ZC Lions and heavily favored Metallurg Magnitogorsk of Russia's Kontinental Hockey League.