Pittsburgh Penguins unveil excellent throwback third jersey – what do you think?

Rory Boylen
Pittsburgh's third jersey.

The Pittsburgh Penguins unveiled a third jersey they’ll use during the 2014-15 season today – and we’re big fans of the throwback look.

The “Pittsburgh Gold,” a color scheme used way back in the Mario Lemieux Stanley Cup days, returns for 12 games this season. When the Penguins moved away from these jerseys in the early 1990s, they were a league powerhouse with back-to-back Stanley Cups. And although we ranked the current Penguins logo – with its dulled gold color – eighth-best in the NHL, we would rank the Pittsburgh Gold penguin even higher. It’s a sharp look.

Check it out. Here are the third jerseys the Penguins will use. Excellent stuff, right? Read more

Watch Steven Stamkos break stuff with his shot

Rory Boylen
stamkosshot

If you’re asked “who has the best shot in the NHL today” you might come back with an answer of Shea Weber or Zdeno Chara or Alex Ovechkin or Steven Stamkos. These players have hard, accurate shots and are among the best goal scorers at their position.

We used to have to imagine all the stuff they could break with their shots. They could break a TV, a gum ball machine, a stack of lego, a fish tank…the possibilities are endless.

No longer do we have to imagine what it would look like for one of these players to blow up this list of things by firing a puck at them. In Bauer’s latest ad, Stamkos takes aim at all these things and more. This is pretty entertaining to watch. Read more

Players try to guess their rating in NHL 15, Alex Ovechkin steals the show

Rory Boylen
Alex Ovechkin

So, we’re not going to recommend that you buy EA Sports’ NHL 15 this year because there are too many modes missing, but this video that shows players trying to guess their overall rating in the game is pretty neat.

Alex Ovechkin, Sidney Crosby, Travis Zajac and more try and guess what their overall player rating is in this year’s NHL video game and some of them come pretty close.

The best answers out of the bunch come from Ovechkin. Oh Ovie – don’t ever leave for the KHL. Read more

KHL coach Andrei Nazarov goes nuts, flips off refs and fans

Matt Larkin
Nazarov Mad

Andrei Nazarov had quite the heel turn in Wednesday’s Kontinental League tilt between Barys and Admiral.

Nazarov, Barys’ coach, wasn’t pleased with a too-many-men-on-the-ice penalty. He took it out on the refs, flipping them off, and when he was tossed out of the game, he turned his attention to the Admiral fans.

Nazarov was extremely efficient in his obscene gestures, packing many into a rapid-fire barrage. Take a look:

Read more

See KHL’s Sochi expansion team score 19 seconds into first home game with beautiful goal

Rory Boylen
Bolshoy Ice Dome. (Photo by Joe Scarnici/Getty Images)

The Bolshoy Ice Dome opened in 2014 for the Winter Olympics and this year it’s home to a KHL expansion team. The Sochi Leopards won one of their first three games on the road and yesterday they played their home opener.

And here’s the first-ever home goal scored by the Leopards, which came just 19 seconds into the game against Ekaterinburg’s Avtomobilist. Alexei Krutov, a player who’s spent his entire career in Russia and Switzerland, left former NHL defenseman Sami Lepisto in the dust and on his butt, and then beat goalie Jakub Kovar through the five hole.

Sochi won its first home game 6-3. According to the KHL’s website, there were about 8,000 people in attendance. Read more

Top 10 NHL personalities

Roberto Luongo (Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)

More than ever, the professional sports world focuses on personality to help sell their products. In the hockey business, that’s been tougher to do thanks to a culture that discourages individualism in the name of team success. But the NHL still has a number of vibrant personas who’ll be worth keeping an eye (and an ear) on in 2014-15. Here are the top 10 hockey personalities this season:

10. Mike Cammalleri, New Jersey Devils. The veteran winger has filled notepads and digital recorders all across North America because he’s an intelligent guy with a healthy sense of humor and good head on his shoulders, and he understands that having opinions and showing the public he’s more than a hockey automaton won’t affect his on-ice performance. Here he is on the Canadian TV comedy series “Mr. D.”:

Cammalleri deserves kudos for putting himself out there. That said, let’s have a moment of silence for that charm now that he’s signed on with the Devils, who are the Bermuda Triangle of personality.

9. Jaromir Jagr, Devils. Yes, I also can’t believe two Devils are on this list. But Jagr is still one of the game’s great characters. He’s capable of going off on a hilarious tangent at any point, but he can also speak with tremendous insight about the game and his experience playing it:

Soon enough, the 43-year-old will be retired and back in his native Czech Republic. Enjoy him while you can. Read more

Chicago’s Jim Cornelison sings Star Spangled Banner on The Colbert Report

Rory Boylen
Jim Cornelison. (Photo by Brian Babineau/NHLI via Getty Images)

This weekend marks the 200th anniversary of the writing of the Star Spangled Banner. Written by Sir Francis Scott Key in 1814 as the British bombarded Baltimore’s Fort McHenry at a crucial battle in what was effectively a second American Independence War, the tune became the official national anthem of the United States in 1931.

In hockey, the best national anthem singer has to be Jim Cornelison, who sings at every Chicago Blackhawks home game. His powerful rendition is made even stronger by the fans who cheer alongside him as he belts out the verse. Read more

HBO’s 24/7 hockey series is toast – for now – but its impact was ‘humongous big’

Adam Proteau
An HBO camera team films at the 2012 Winter Classic in Philadelphia. (Len Redkoles/NHL)

Reports indicate U.S. cable giant HBO will not produce a 24/7 reality series in advance of the NHL’s 2015 Winter Classic game as it has for the past three full seasons. It’s a shame, as everyone involved in that program helped put together one hell of a show.

The 24/7 series gave the NHL an NFL Films-type treatment, and those who appeared in front of the cameras – first, in 2011, when the Capitals and Penguins squared off in Pittsburgh; then, when the Flyers and Rangers played the following year; and finally, last season’s showdown between the Red Wings and Maple Leafs – were better for it. Okay, maybe that’s not true of Bruce Boudreau (NSFW language at this link) and Randy Carlyle:

But even with their imperfections laid bare, the coaches, players and league benefitted from the behind-the-curtain glimpse the series provided to a fan base that couldn’t get enough. Read more