Saturday, May 17, 2014

2005-06 Mighty Ducks of Anaheim Teemu Selanne Jersey

After introducing himself to the NHL with 76 goals as a rookie with the Winnipeg Jets in the 1992-93 season, while winning the Calder Trophy, Teemu Selanne would go on to play four seasons in Winnipeg before being traded in a cost cutting move by the desperate and soon to relocate Jets to the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim in February of 1996.

After six prolific seasons in Anaheim, including two seasons over 50 goals, Selanne was dealt to the San Jose Sharks at the trading deadline in 2001, where he would skate for two additional seasons.

Selanne Sharks photo SelanneSharks.jpg

After leaving the Sharks, Selanne would package himself with former Mighty Ducks teammate Paul Kariya at a discounted rate in an effort to win a Stanley Cup with the Colorado Avalanche. Selanne, however, would suffer the worst offensive season of his career up to that time by far, recording only 32 points in 78 games, just half of his previous season's total. Selanne would have surgery following that season, which would force him to miss the 2004-05 season, sidetracking his plans to play for Jokerit Helsinki during the NHL lockout.

Selanne would sign a one year contract with the Mighty Ducks following the end of the lockout. Having recovered from his knee surgery, no one player benefitted from the year off more than Selanne. Unlike several other veteran players who chose not to play during the lockout and were never the same again, Selanne was rejuvenated by the combination of being healthy once more and a return to familiar territory in Anaheim.

He racked up 40 goals and 50 assists for 90 points, his most in six years. During the 2005-06 season Selanne would score his 1,000th NHL point when he scored his second goal of the game against the Los Angeles Kings, only the seventh European player to reach that milestone. Additionally, the Mighty Ducks would go on the deepest playoff run in Selanne's career, reaching the Western Conference Finals as Selanne chipped in 14 points in 16 games. He was recognized for his accomplishments that season by being named the 2006 recipient of the Masterton Trophy.

Selanne 05-06 photo SelanneDucks05-06.jpg
Selanne had a fine season upon returning to Anaheim

Selanne's regular season success of the year before was repeated the following year as the team underwent a name change under new ownership. Now simply the Anaheim Ducks, the team improved 12 points in the standings to win the Pacific Division title behind Selanne's team leading 94 points, the fourth highest season total of his career, from 48 goals and 46 assists. Selanne's 48 goals included him scoring the 500th goal of his career on November 22, 2006 against Colorado, making him only the second Finnish player, along with Jari Kurri, to score 500 NHL goals.

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Selanne scoring his 500th NHL goal

Five weeks later, on New Year's Eve, Selanne would play in his 1,00oth career game to finish off the calendar year with yet another milestone, having already reached 1,000 points and 500 goals during 2006.

2007 would also see Selanne set marks as the Ducks all-time leading goal scorer with 301 and become the first player over age 35 with consecutive 40-goal seasons.

The Ducks would march through the playoffs, defeating both the Minnesota Wild and then Vancouver Canucks in five games, before dispatching the Detroit Red Wings in six to reach the Stanley Cup Finals for the first time, facing off against the Ottawa Senators. The Ducks would win the first two games at home before losing the third in Ottawa. They would rebound by winning game four on the road, sending them back to Anaheim with a chance to take the cup at home, which they did by a decisive score of 6-2, giving an emotional Selanne his first opportunity to hoist the Stanley Cup.

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Selanne reaches the pinnacle and gets to raise the Stanley Cup

He remained on the sidelines for the beginning of the 2007-08 season before returning to the ice in January. He became the Ducks all-time point scoring leader on February 12th and recorded his 600th assists later in the month.

The 2009-10 season would see Selanne become the 18th player in NHL history to record 600 goals, which was followed quickly by his 602nd goal on April 2, 2010 to surpass Jari Kurri as the all-time leading Finnish goal scorer.

The 2011-12 season would see Selanne rebound yet again after being limited to 65 and 54 games the previous two seasons with the final 30 goal season of his career with 31 on his way to an 80 point season, his highest total in five years. and the third highest point total ever by a player over the age of 40. He would follow that by playing in all 82 games at the age of 41, becoming the oldest player to appear in every game during a season.

Selanne announced that the 2013-14 season would be his last, but would first play in his sixth Olympics, captaining Finland to a bronze medal before he career would come to a close when the Ducks were eliminated from the Stanley Cup playoffs.

His final NHL point totals were 684 goals and 773 assists for 1,457 points. He scored an additonal 44 goals and 88 playoff points, won the Calder, Richard and Masterton trophies during his career as well as winning a Stanley Cup during his 21 year career.

Today's featured jersey is a 2005-06 Mighty Ducks of Anaheim Teemu Selanne jersey as worn by Selanne during the 2005-06 season. This jersey drew "love it or hate it" reaction when first introduced.

The jersey's "baseball style" script logo was a radical departure for the NHL and the simplified waist and arm striping didn't have the Mighty Ducks "look", as they were the innovators of the diagonally striped jersey back in 1993. The interlocking "MD" monogram on the shoulders also did not look like anything that had come before in the cartoonish history of Mighty Ducks logos. Another polarizing aspect of this alternate jersey was the complete omission of the color jade from the not only the jersey, but the logo as well.

2005-06 was the final year for this style jersey, as the club would undergo one of the most radical redesigns to a team's look in league history, as they would change not only their colors, but modify the team's name as well now being under new ownership, changing from the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim, to simply the Anaheim Ducks.


Plenty of video today. First a quick video of Selanne hoisting the cup followed by being interviewed on the ice following the game, including the usual, stupid "are you going to retire" question, and then Selanne's press conference afterwards.


Our next video shows Selanne bringing the Stanley Cup home to Finland.

Friday, May 16, 2014

2008 Finland National Team Mikko Koivu Jersey

For the first time in 16 years, and only the second time in their history, Finland won the World Championship following their 6-1 thrashing of arch-rivals Sweden on this date in 2011.

Koivu Finland Trophy
Finland's captain Mikko Koivu is thrilled to hoist
the World Championship trophy

After a scoreless first period Sweden scored the first goal when Magnus Pääjärvi gave Sweden and their fans a false sense of hope with a laser beam of a wrist shot from the left faceoff circle that beat Peteri Vehanen on his glove side and into the upper corner of the net.

Sweden nearly went ahead by two when they hit a post while on a power play, but when Finland got a late power play, they were able to convert with just seven second remaining in the period when the tournament's leading scorer Jarkko Immonen, after skating in from the left point, blasted a shot past Sweden's Viktor Fasth to give the Finns a huge boost heading into the final intermission.

It would not take Finland long to seize the lead. Just 2:35 into the third Pettri Nokelainen converted a pass from Antti Pihlström after sneaking in behind the Swedish defense and one timing the puck into the net and sending Fasth's water bottle flying. Less than one minute later Niko Kapanen banged in a loose puck after a Swedish turnover deep in their own zone for a 3-1 margin and the Finns were on their way, this after NHL shootout specialist Mikko Koivu failed to convert a breakaway chance moments earlier.

The period continued for the next 13 minutes with Sweden failing to beat Vehanen to close the gap before the wheels came off for Sweden. First Janne Pesonen extended the lead to three with a goal at 16:41 when he sped around the Swedish defense, picked up a dump in off the end boards, skated across the front of the net and deposited a backhander into the net behind Fasth.

Mika Pyörälä then got the party started early when he put another one past Fasth just 35 seconds later and the rout was on. Pihlström capped off the scoring and really kicked the party into high gear with Finland's fifth goal of the period with just 55 seconds remaining in the game to make the final score an unbelievable 6-1, no doubt sending the citizens of Helsinki into the night in full song.

Finland trophy celebration

Since winning their first World Championship, in Sweden, in 1995, Finland had made the gold medal final four times, coming up short on each occasion, so to not only win, but win big and over their main rivals Sweden, made this victory that much sweeter.

Today's featured jersey is a 2008 Finland National Team Mikko Koivu jersey, as worn in the 2008 World Championships. This jersey features the IIHF 100th Anniversary patch on the rear hem as worn by all the teams in that year's edition of the World Championships. It also sports the Finnair sponsorship patches on the arms, giving the jersey it's distinctive World Championship look.

While Koivu was only an assistant captain in 2008, he carried on the family tradition established by his older brother Saku Koivu, the long-time captain of the Finland National Team.

Finland 2008 jersey
Finland 2008 jersey

Today's video section is extended highlights of the gold medal final of the 2001 IIHF World Championships from Slovakia.


Here's more of the Finns taking to the streets of Helsinki following their championship, clothing optional.


Of note, our Third String Goalie Finnish hockey name is Antti Jokinen.

To get your own Finnish hockey name, try the Third String Goalie
Hockey Name Generator!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

1982-83 Philadelphia Flyers Paul Holmgren Jersey

Born in St. Paul, Minnesota, right winger Paul Holmgren played junior hockey for the St. Paul Vulcans in 1973-74, scoring 22 goals and 81 points while amassing 183 penalty minutes in 55 games. That same season he also skated for the United States at the World Junior Tournament in January as was later drafted by the Edmonton Oilers of the WHA.

He next attended the University of Minnesota for the 1974-75 season under head coach Herb Brooks and continued his rugged ways with 108 penalty minutes in 37 games while scoring 31 points.

Holmgren Gophers, Holmgren Gophers

Following the season he would be drafted again, this time by the Philadelphia Flyers of the NHL as well as having Edmonton trade his WHA rights to the Minnesota Fighting Saints.

He chose to forego any of his remaining college eligibility and turn professional while staying close to home with the Fighting Saints, doing his best to live up to the "fighting" part of the team's name with 121 penalty minutes in 51 games, which made him even more popular with the hometown fans. Unfortunately the Fighting Saints were also failing in their attempts to fight off their creditors, and Holmgren left the struggling team three days prior to the franchise folding.

Paul Holmgren Fighting Saints

He sought refuge with the Flyers organization and finished his season with 6 games with the Richmond Robins of the AHL and made his NHL debut with one game in Philadelphia. His fractured season also included 6 games with the Fighting Saints minor league affiliate, the Johnstown Jets, with whom he racked up an impressive 15 points - an average of 2.5 per game! His season was cut short with a scratched cornea, which sent him to the hospital where he had an allergic reaction to the anesthetic, which nearly killed him.

He recovered during the off season and was able to spend the entire 1976-77 season with the Flyers, seeing action in 59 games, where he amassed 201 penalty minutes, but proved he was not one-dimensional with 14 goals and 26 points. The Flyers two Stanley Cups my have been in the rearview mirror at this point in time, but they were still a force to be reckoned with, and Holmgren appeared in an additional 10 playoff games that season.

In 1977-78 his games played rose slightly to 62, but his point total rose nicely to 34, but the rugged play certainly remained, as his was whistled for 190 more penalty minutes. The postseason saw Holmgren play an additional 12 playoff games.

He would see the ice in 57 games in 1978-79 and raise his goal total to 19. Eight playoff games would follow, and Holmgren would score one goal for the third postseason in a row.

Holmgren followed with a career year in 1979-80, setting new personal bests in games played, with 74, assists with 35, and penalty minutes, with 267 as well as establishing career highs with 30 goals and 65 points. He would then cut loose in the playoffs, scoring 10 goals in 18 games, including becoming the first American-born player to score a hat trick in the Stanley Cup Finals, which occurred on this date in 1980 in a 8-3 win over the New York Islanders in Game 2 of the finals.

Holmgren Flyers, Holmgren Flyers

He would nearly duplicate his fine regular season in 1980-81 with 59 points in 77 games while setting career highs with 37 assists and surpassing 300 penalty minutes for the only time in his career with 306. He would again shine in the playoffs with 5 goals and 14 points in 12 games despite serving another 49 minutes in penalties. He made his only NHL All-Star Game appearance that year.

He was limited to 41 games in 1981-82 due to a separated shoulder in August of 1981 in preparation for a place on Team USA for the 1981 Canada Cup tournament, which he was forced to miss, but rebounded with 77 games the following season, just missing out on a 20 goal season with 19.

After 52 games of the 1983-84 season, Holmgren once again returned home when he was traded to the Minnesota North Stars as the Flyers all-time penalty minute leader, no mean feat considering the lineup of tough guys who came before him on the Broad Street Bullies of the mid-1970's.

Holmgren North Stars, Holmgren North Stars

His time in Minnesota was relatively brief however, as he only played in 11 games at the end of the season and 12 more in the playoffs, followed by just 16 games in 1984-85 before retiring as a player.

He became an assistant coach upon his retirement, eventually moving into head coaching followed by becoming a General Manager, first for the Hartford Whalers and later the Flyers.

His final career totals are 527 games played, 144 goals and 179 assists for 323 points and 1,684 penalty minutes. He also added another 51 points in 82 playoff games.

Today's featured jersey is a 1982-83 Philadelphia Flyers Paul Holmgren jersey. This was the first season for the newly updated Flyers jersey, which now had the bold, black trim which separated the orange arms of the jersey from the white body.

This jersey also had the distinction of being worn during the second (and final) season the Flyers wore the CCM full length pants, popularly known as "Cooperalls".

Philadelphia Flyers 82-83 jersey, Philadelphia Flyers 82-83 jersey
Philadelphia Flyers 82-83 jersey, Philadelphia Flyers 82-83 jersey
Bonus jersey: Today's bonus jersey is a 1984-85 Minnesota North Stars Paul Holmgren jersey worn during his final season of play. The North Stars adopted this style in 1978-79 and, despite updating the white home jerseys with intimidating black trim in 1981-82, continued to wear their road green jerseys without the addition of the black until 1988-89, a span of seven seasons!

This was an odd case of non-uniformity to their uniforms we have never understood, as one would think a team would want their jerseys to have a consistent look and would want to appear more intimidating on the road perhaps even more, or at least as much, as at home.

Minnesota North Stars 84-85 jersey, Minnesota North Stars 84-85 jersey
Minnesota North Stars 84-85 jersey, Minnesota North Stars 84-85 jersey
It's Old Time Hockey with Holmgren and the New York Rangers Nick Fotiu! Sometimes you have to take a few to give a few.


Here's some real nastiness, as Holmgren headbutts the Atlanta Flames tough guy Willi Plett, who doesn't hesitate to let Holmgren have one in return! How many games do you think they'd be suspended today?


Wednesday, May 14, 2014

1969-70 Minnesota North Stars Gump Worsley Jersey

Yea, we know this is supposed to be a hockey jersey blog, but with today being the birthday of Lorne "Gump" Worsley, we simply cannot let the occasion pass by without taking the opportunity to post our all-time favorite hockey card.

It's a Topps 1971-72 card #241, and it's a thing of beauty.


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No, it's not glossy, it's not centered and it looks like it may have been cut out of the sheet of cards with a rusty scissors, but how can you look at that card and not smile? Even the curved font for team name seems to mimic his happy smile. We love this card so much we even printed it on a t-shirt.

Not all the cards in the 72-72 Topps set look quite this bad either. The
Penguins for example, made out good, getting a festive red background with yellow type for the team name, while the Blackhawks must have had a fan on the design team, walking away with a nice light blue with red type. But not the North Stars. Oh no...

Pink.

Tough, macho hockey pink. With garishly jarring green type. Yea, the Maple Leafs also got pink, but a darker, more menacing pink with a complimentary yellow team name. But when it came time for the North Stars, the designers looked at their color chart and realized they had crossed off all the other color combinations and what was left was baby girl pink paired with forest green. Bleah. How horrible is that?

Then, just check out the photo of the happy Gumper! Does that simply rock or what? You just want to buy that guy a beer. This man is feeling no pain and has life by the tail. Perhaps it was too many shots to the head, what with Gump being one of the last holdouts to actually not wear a mask while playing goal.

Yea, for you youngsters out there, read that again slowly to make sure you comprehend what you just heard. The man played goalie in the NHL against the likes of Bobby Hull without wearing a mask. For years. 24 years in total, winning the Calder Trophy as Rookie of the Year on a last place team, 2 Vezina Trophies as the League's Best Goaltender, 4 Stanley Cups and eventual election into the Hockey Hall of Fame.

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But here's the funny part. This seemingly fearless man who faced some of the most wicked slapshots coming off the unregulated curved sticks of the time was afraid to fly. You'd think that if he was going to have a fear, it might be the obvious one coming at his face.

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Gump Worsley tended goal for the North Stars during the first ever NHL game we attended as a kid back in early 70's in a game vs. the Los Angeles Kings, and for that reason alone he will always have a soft spot in our hearts, but being the subject matter of the greatest hockey card of all time doesn't hurt either. Not like a puck to the face.

Today's featured jersey is a 1969-70 Minnesota North Stars Gump Worsley jersey. The North Stars started out with essentially this same jersey in 1967. After a false start saw them drop the lace up collar worn at the very start of their existence, the North Stars added the white shoulder yoke in 1968-69 and would continue to wear this style through the 1974-75 season, by which time Worsley had retired.

Minnesota North Stars 69-70 jersey

Today's video section is the wonderful Legends of Hockey profile of Gump Worsley.


Tuesday, May 13, 2014

1920-21 Toronto St. Patricks Babe Dye Jersey

Born on this date in 1898, Cecil "Babe" Dye played junior hockey from 1916 to 1918 before playing senior hockey for the Toronto St. Patricks in 1918-19 before turning professional with the Toronto St. Patricks of the NHL the following season. His rookie campaign saw him score 11 goals and 14 points in 23 games.

His game really took off the following season when he led the league in goal scoring with 33 goals in 23 games for the St. Patricks and later gained his first playoff experience after the St. Patricks qualified for the post season after winning the season's second half schedule.

The 1921-22 season saw Dye finish second in goal scoring with 31, highlighted by his five goal night on December 16, 1922. He was just the seventh different player to ever accomplish that feat. In the post-season, Dye was instrumental in leading the St. Patricks first past the Ottawa Senators to win the O'Brien Trophy as NHL playoff champions and then over the Vancouver Millionaires of the PCHA 3 games to 2 to capture the 1922 Stanley Cup as he registered 11 of the St. Patricks 21 goals in 7 playoff games that season.

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1921-22 Stanley Cup Champion Toronto St. Patricks

He returned to the St. Patricks the following season and led the league in both goals (26) and points (37) to capture his first Art Ross Trophy. Dye followed that by finishing second again in goal scoring in 1923-24 with 17 goals in 19 games.

Babe Dye Toronto St. Pats 1922-23
Babe Dye in 1922-23 with Stanley Cup Champions patch

He rebounded from his 16 goal total the year prior, his lowest to date, with a strong 1924-25 season as he pushed his goal total to a career high 38 goals, as well as a career best 44 points, to capture not only the goal scoring title for the third time in five years, but also his second Art Ross Trophy as he was crowned scoring champion once more. On December 22 of that season he registered the second five goal game of his career, becoming on the third player to accomplish the feat more than once. His 38 goals would stand as the franchise record for 35 years until it was broken by Frank Mahovlich in 1960-61 in a season forty games longer.

Dye's last season in Toronto saw him second in team scoring and his 18 goals were good for eighth place league wide.

Prior to the 1926-27 season Dye was sold to the expansion Chicago Black Hawks, where his 25 goals would come in second overall in goal scoring for the third time of his career. His 30 points placed him fifth in the league scoring race. Additionally, his 25th and final goal of the season was the 200th of his NHL career.

Babe Dye Chicago Black Hawks

Unfortunately, just prior to the 1927-28 season, Dye would break his leg during training camp and was never the same player again. He would return in time to play ten games for the Black Hawks later that season, but would not register a single point.

The Black Hawks then sold Dye to the New York Americans for the 1928-29 season and he played in 42 games, only scoring but a single goal. Just prior to the 1929-30 season Dye was traded the New Haven Eagles of the Canadian-American Hockey League. There, he regained some of his former scoring touch with 11 goals and 15 points in 34 games.

Dye signed with his former Toronto club, now renamed the Maple Leafs, in 1930 and played in six games before being released by the club.

His final NHL totals show 201 goals and 47 assists for 248 points in 271 games played, two scoring titles and one Stanley Cup.

Dye also played professional baseball in the summers from 1920 to 1926, even announcing his intention to retire from hockey to concentrate on baseball at one point prior to the 1923 hockey season, but rejoined the St. Patricks when the seasons began. It was his love of baseball that earned him his nickname "Babe", after the legendary Babe Ruth.

Dye was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1970.

Today's featured jersey is a 1920-21 Toronto St. Patricks Cecil "Babe" Dye 1920-21 jersey. This style was worn for one season only, the year Dye won his first Art Ross Trophy as league scoring champion.

While the club was named the St. Patricks for only eight seasons, they did manage to wear five different sweater styles, including one of them twice and none of them longer than three seasons, that being the style pictured above with the Stanley Cup Champions patch.

Babe Dye Toronto St. Pats 1920-21

Monday, May 12, 2014

2014 IIHF World Championships Update

The second round of games of the 2014 IIHf World Championships have now been completed and with some unexpected results.

In Group A, Norway sits atop the group with 2 outright wins for 6 points highlighted by Per-Åge Skrøder's penalty shot goal against Denmark in the Norwegian's 4-3 win over Denmark. This follows Norway's opening 3-0 shutout win over Italy thanks to Lars Haugen's 15 saves in goal.

Lars Haugen Norway photo LarsHaugenNorway.jpg
Lars Haugen

Right behind Norway is Sweden with 5 points following their blanking of Denmark followed by a resilient win over the Czech Republic, as Sweden had to come from behind three times, never having led in regulation until prevailing in a shootout.

Canada is third with 4 points, having suffered a shocking loss to France in a shootout on opening day. With the current World Championship format having two groups of eight teams playing seven games each, it does allow for teams to absorb a bad loss, as there are many more games in the group stage than previously, when an upset such as this would have much more impact. Canada rebounded strongly with a convincing 4-1 win over Slovakia to take the full 3 points.

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Jonathan Huberdeau of Canada

The Czech Republic currently sits in the final place to advance to the Playoff Round, fourth. The Czechs defeated their rivals Slovakia in overtime for 2 points on opening day and then took away another point while losing to Sweden in a shootout yesterday for a total of 3.

The Czechs have a goal differential of zero, which places them higher in the standings than Italy's 3 points, which they gained by defeating France 2-1 in regulation following their opening loss to Norway.

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Italy celebrates their win over France

France is in sixth place with 2 points from their stunning win over Canada thanks to the performance of former NHLer Cristobal Huet in goal after being outshot 36-29, but must be kicking themselves by throwing away the momentum gained from their upset victory by laying an egg against Italy, who are six places behind France in the IIHF World Rankings. France would have done themselves a big favor by at least making it to overtime and taking a point from the game but gave up the winning goal with under a minute to play in regulation.

Cristobal Huet France photo CristobalHuetFrance.jpg
Cristobal Huet of France stymies Canada

Slovakia has gotten off to a rough start by losing to the Czech Republic 3-2 in overtime and then having to face a resolute Canada in their second game, a 4-1 defeat, and now sit seventh with a single point. With the lower ranked teams in the group still remaining on their schedule, Slovakia will be looking to move up into the top four by the end of the Preliminary Round.

Denmark trails the group with no points following regulation losses to Norway and Sweden. The Danes will be hoping for good results against France and Italy to avoid relegation while hoping to steal points from a couple of the top clubs, as the wins for France and Italy have put them at a quick disadvantage.

Denmark photo FrederikStorm9celebrateswithPatrickBjorkstrand.jpg
Frederik Storm of Denmark celebrates with Patrick Bjorkstrand

Over in Group B, Russia has gotten off to a dominant start with two regulation wins over Switzerland and Finland for the maximum 6 points.

Ovechkin and Zaripov Russia photo AlexanderOvechkin8andDanisZaripov.jpg
Russia's Alexander Ovechkin celebrates with Danis Zaripov

The United States has kept pace with two outright wins thanks to a pair of close offsides calls which negated goals for Switzerland. With that result going the way of the US, they slot in second behind Russia as they trail in goal differential by 1, 7-6 thanks to an opening day 6-1 win over hosts Belarus.

Germany is a surprising third place at 5 points thanks to Thomas Oppenheimer's heroics, as he scored the deciding shootout goal in the Germans opening game vs. Kazakhstan and then repeated the feat with a regulation penalty shot goal with less than five minutes to play against Latvia.

Thomas Oppenheimer Germany photo ThomasOppenheimerGermany-1.jpg
Thomas Oppenheimer wins the shootout for Germany

Latvia's 3-2 come-from-behind upset win to open play over Finland and NHL goaltender Pekka Rinne earned them three points, but, like France, they were coming off a terrific upset win over the Finns, only to lose their next game in regulation to Germany, taking away their unexpected momentum. Still, their fans are recognized as the most passionate and with the tournament being held in neighboring Belarus, the Latvians can expect home ice-like support for all of their remaining games.

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Latvia's Edgar Masalskis got the win over Finland

Hosts Belarus are fifth in Group B. While the festive opening day was damped with a 6-1 defeat at the hands of the United States, they rebounded with a solid 4-1 win over Kazakhstan to undue some of the damage the US game did to their goal differential.

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Mikhail Grabovski of the Washington Capitals leads host Belarus

Kazakhstan currently sits in sixth position, having secured a point in their 2-1 shootout loss to Germany. After their 4-1 loss to Belarus, things look bleak for the 17th ranked Kazakhs, as their remaining games are against the teams ranked 2nd, 4th, 6th, 7th and 10th in the world.

Behind Kazakhstan, but only temporarily, are Finland, with a 3-2 loss to Latvia and a 4-2 loss to Russia, and Switzerland, who have also lost their two opening games, 5-0 at the hands of the Russians and their controversial 3-2 loss to the United States. Look for both Finland and Switzerland to right their ships and begin to accumulate points in the standings in short order. With five games remaining, it's not out of the question for both teams to reach the Playoff Round when the standings become final on May 20th.

Reto Barra Switzerland photo RetoBerra.jpg
Reto Berra of the Colorado Avalanche will be relied on
to turn Switzerland's fortunes around

The stories so far have been the upset wins by France and Latvia, who then both proceeded to lose to lesser opponents, the dominating start by Russia, keen to make some amends for their performance at the Olympics in February, and the quick starts for Germany and Group A leading Norway.

For fans of jerseys, the World Championships have many new jerseys making their debut, as the 2014 Olympic field was just 12 teams, while the World Championships consist of 16 clubs. Those debuting new jerseys are then Denmark, France, Italy, Belarus and Kazakhstan.

Additionally, the Russians have a new home white jersey, as pictured above, which is quite different than the one worn in Sochi. Finland also has a new, more traditional white jersey, ditching the "wrapped in the flag" look of Sochi and has made some detail changes to their away blue jerseys, having taken away the flag on the sleeve and red coat of arms patch on the front.

Canada is not wearing either of it's Sochi jerseys either, reverting to the ones used at the 2013 World Championships with the crest of Hockey Canada, which is not allowed at the Olympics. Same goes for the United States, which is wearing the same jersey as in Sochi, only now with it's striking USA Hockey crest which is not allowed under Olympic rules on commercialism.

Finally, the German men were not part of the 2014 Olympics, but their black jersey was worn by their women's team in Sochi so it did not receive much exposure and may be new to many. Additionally, the men's World Championship home jersey is now white rather than the gold that the women wore in Sochi.

Games today include Switzerland trying to get on track against Belarus and Slovakia facing off against France in the early games, while the late games have Canada taking on the Czech Republic and Jaromir Jagr, while the United States and Russia, led by Alexander Ovechkin, battle to stay undefeated atop Group B. The late games both start at 1:30 PM eastern time, with the USA game on the NBC Sports Network in the United States with TSN showing the Canadian game and TSN2 carrying the USA vs Russia game in Canada.

Today's featured jersey is a 1999 Norway Per-Åge Skrøder jersey. When we acquired this jersey we were especially happy to get a name with the Norwegian "ø" character as part of it only to discover when it arrived that it has a standard "O" with an "I" glued diagonally over the top of it!

The Vår sponsorship logos are a heavy rather rubbery silkscreening. In addition, the Nike logos are also printed on the jersey as well, while the numbers are all sewn on. Also worth noting is the fairly large Norway Ice Hockey Federation crest on the front, which is blue screened onto white twill which was then sewn onto the jersey.

Skrøder began his professional hockey career in Norway in 1994 before moving to the Swedish Elitserien in 1998. He has played for FrölundaLinköpings, HV 71, where he won a championship in 2004 and Södertälje before moving to MoDo in 2006 where he won a second championship in 2007 and the league scoring title in 2009. He was named Noway's Player of the Year in 2002.

Additionally, Skrøder has competed for Norway in the European Junior Championships in 1995, the World Junior Championships in 1997, the World Championships at both Division 1 and the Top Division 13 times and the Olympics in 2010 and 2014.

A very striking and colorful jersey with some excellent details that make it unique and definitely a favorite, especially when combined with the ongoing accomplishments of the player who wore it.

1999 Norway jersey photo Norway1999F.jpg
1999 Norway jersey photo Norway1999B.jpg

Today's video section begins with France's unlikely upset win over Canada.


Speaking of upsets, here are highlights of Latvia defeating Finland.


Finally, the United States controversial win over Switzerland.

 

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