Thursday, October 22, 2015

2003-04 Montreal Canadiens Stephane Quintal Jersey

French-Canadian defenseman Stephane Quintal, born on this date in 1968, first played junior hockey for the Granby Bisons of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. He immediately became a solid contributor, playing in 67 games as a rookie. So impressive was his debut season that Quintal was named team captain for the 1986-87 season at just 17 years old.

He impressed with his growth on the ice that season, as he raised his point total from 19 during his rookie year to 54 from 13 goals and 41 assists. This performance did not go unnoticed, as Quintal was chosen #14 overall in the first round of the 1987 NHL Entry Draft by the Boston Bruins.

He returned to Granby for the following season and was again the team captain, but after 23 games he was traded to the Hull Olympiques. He would only play 15 regular season games for Hull, but would see action in 19 playoff games as Hull would make it all the way to the semifinals of the 1988 Memorial Cup where he contributed an average of a point per game.

For the next three seasons Quintal would divide his time between the Bruins of the NHL and the Maine Mariners of the AHL, playing an increasing role with the Bruins with 26 games in 1988-89, to 38 to 45 in 1990-91.

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Quintal while with the Maine Mariners

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He finally cracked the Bruins lineup full time in 1991-92, but after 49 games he and Craig Janney were dealt to the St. Louis Blues for Adam Oates.

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His time in St. Louis was somewhat brief though, as he would finish that season with 26 games and play the full 1992-93 season with the Blues before being dealt to the Winnipeg Jets with Nelson Emerson for Phil Housely.

Quintal immediately set a new personal best in points with 26 his first season with Winnipeg, as well as accumulating a career high in penalty minutes with 119 in 1993-94. Despite not racking up huge penalty minute numbers, when the situation called for it, Quintal was not afraid to battle with some of the most feared fighters in the NHL at a time when some of the game's all-time toughest were ready to drop the gloves.

The following season of 1994-95 Quintal him nearly match his point production with 23 as well as improving his +/- by a full 25 points.

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Quintal was once again on the move, as he was acquired by the Montreal Canadiens prior to the 1995-96 season. For the 1996-97 season Quintal would be named one of the team's assistant captains and in 1998-99 he would set a career high with 27 points. Following the conclusion of the NHL season, Quintal would make the only international appearance of his career when he was part of the Canadian roster at the 1999 World Championships in Norway. He acquitted himself well, scoring 3 goals and 5 points in 10 games and served as one of the team's assistant captains.

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For the 1999-00 season, Quintal signed as a free agent with the New York Rangers, where he played 75 games.

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Just prior to the 2000-01 season, he was claimed off waivers by the Chicago Blackhawks, the fourth Original Six club of his career. With Chicago, he put up his usual numbers, playing in 75 games and scoring 18 points, just as he had done for the previous six seasons with little variance.

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Note the Blackhawks 75th Anniversary patch on the right chest of Quintal's jersey and the Hockey Hall of Fame Game patch on the left chest, worn once versus the Toronto Maple Leafs to kick off the annual Hall of Fame Weekend festivities in Toronto each Novemeber

During the summer, the Blackhawks dealt Quintal back to Montreal in time for the 2001-02 season. Back on familiar territory, he once more played 75 games while adding 16 points on offense. The next two seasons saw a decline in his point totals, down to 10 in 2002-03 and 8 in 2003-04, the season during which he would surpass 1,000 games played.

During the offseason, the Canadiens traded Quintal to the Los Angeles Kings in anticipation of the 2004-05 season, but the NHL lockout eventually caused the entire season to be abandoned, and Quintal never played for Los Angeles. Like many other NHLers, Quintal looked to Europe to keep active, and he signed for HC Asiago in the Italian league. He would play in 10 regular season games plus an additional 5 playoff contests to close out his playing days, as he would announce his retirement in August of 2005.

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The final games of Quintal's career were with Asiago
of the Italian league during the 2004-05 NHL lockout

His final NHL totals were 1,037 games played, 63 goals and 180 assists for 243 points, along with 1,320 penalty minutes. He now works for the NHL as Senior Vice President of Player Safety.

Today's featured jersey is a 2003-04 Montreal Canadiens Stephane Quintal jersey. This 1940's style throwback jersey was worn by Montreal on October 20, 2003 versus the Detroit Red Wings. This jersey, with it's "V" patch on the chest was a part of the NHL's Vintage jersey program, in which seven teams, Boston, the Edmonton Oilers, Los Angeles, the Rangers, St. Louis and the Vancouver Canucks would wear throwback jerseys for certain games.

This jersey also made an appearance at the first Heritage Classic in Edmonton when the Oilers hosted the Canadiens. While Montreal would wear their red vintage jersey during the main event, their legends team would wear the white vintage jersey when they took on the Oilers legends the day before the NHL outdoor game.

This jersey style would return in 2005-06, again with the vintage V patch for a limited number of games, but now with three color numbers, red, trimmed in white and outlined in blue rather than the two color red outlined in blue as in today's featured jersey, which suffered from less contrast between the number and the central jersey stripe.

This jersey style would receive a promotion to being designated as the Canadiens third jersey for the 2006-07 season. As the team's alternate jersey, the V patch would disappear from the front of the jersey and it would now be worn more often in line with the league's guidelines for third jerseys.

This resulted in three minor variations of this jersey, two color numbers with the V patch in 2003-04, three color numbers in 2005-06 with the V patch, and three color numbers without the V patch in 2006-07. One consistent aspect of these three variations of this style was that the font used for the names and numbers was different than those worn on Montreal's home and road jerseys.

The alternate version of the 2005-06 season came to a premature end with the adaptation of the new Reebok Edge jerseys in 2007-08, as all of the NHL clubs were limited to just the two jerseys, a home and a road. Some clubs chose to keep their alternate jersey as their new home dark jersey, but Montreal chose to discontinue the 1940's style in favor of their classic home white jersey.

But this would not be the end of the Habs beautiful 1940's throwback, as the 2008-09 season would see the Canadiens begin their centennial celebration. As part of the festivities spread out over two seasons, the club would wear a series of no less than seven throwback jersey styles, of which the 1945-46 style was one.

This new variation of the 1945-46 throwback worn in 2008-09 would be customized with the same lettering and number font as the club's standard home and road jerseys as well as the script version of the "100 seasons" shoulder patch on the upper right arm. It would be worn twice, first on November 15, 2008 against the Philadelphia Flyers and again on March 14, 2009 versus the New Jersey Devils.

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Montreal Canadiens 2003-04 jersey photo Montreal Canadiens 2003-04 BF jersey.jpg

Bonus jersey: Today's bonus jersey is a 1999 Canada National Team Stephane Quintal jersey as worn during his only international appearance at the 1999 World Championships in Norway.

This style was first worn during the 1998 Olympics in Nagano, Japan and was worn through the 2001 World Championships. While Nike used this template for several other countries at the time, such as the United States and the Czech Republic, Canada was the only one to use the Copperplate font for the numbers, which gave the Canadians their own unique look with a slight retro feel.

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In today's video section, Quintal was not afraid to take on the NHL's toughest customers, as here he takes on Bob Probert. in a combination heavyweight slug fest and strip show.

Next, Quintal and Darcy Hordichuk trade bombs in this raucous Puttin' on the Foil battle which leaves Hordiuchuk bloodied.

Our final Quintal highlight sees him recreating Rock 'em, Sock 'em Robots with P. J. Stock of the Bruins as they try to knock each other's blocks off.

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