The Stanley Cup

That’s Hockey EH!!! It’s hard not to feel a swell of patriotic pride when seeing the enthusiasm alive in Vancouver for Canada’s favorite pastime. Yes, I’m talking about the Stanley Cup. Tonight, in game 6 of the NHL finals, the Vancouver Canucks have taken the lead against the Boston Bruins in the series (3-2), which has created an opportunity to signal the end of a 96 year battle to bring the Stanley Cup to Vancouver. “Rah-rah-rah!!”

All the Canucks have to do tonight is WIN!!! Lose, and they’ll get a second chance on home ice in game 7 this Wednesday. But let’s not talk about that right now.

So about that cup… The Stanley cup is the oldest professional sports trophy in North America. It was Lord Stanley of Preston, the governor general of Canada from 1888 to 1893 who donated the famous cup in 1892. It cost him a hefty $48.67. Lord Stanley was known as a devoted British sportsman who helped create the world of organized sport that dominates our culture today. I’d also like to take a moment to recognize that he also donated the land which is now Stanley Park. What a guy!

A few other Hockey Firsts:

1843: First written reference to hockey on ice: A British army officer Arthur H. Freeling, stationed in Kinston, wrote in his diary: “began to skate this year, improved quickly and had great fun at hockey on the ice.”

March 3, 1875: First reported indoor game of Hockey: appeared in the Montreal Gazette.

1876: First reported use of the word puck: “What the puck was that?”

Feb 27, 1877: First printed playing rules for hockey appeared in the Montreal Gazette.

1881: The first know photograph of a team wearing a hockey uniform. McGill University Club.

1883: The first hockey championship trophy: the Montreal Winter Carnival Cup, won by McGill. It wasn’t for another 10years that the Stanley Cup was first presented.

Dec 8 1886: The first organized hockey league: the Canadian Amateur Hockey Association with 5 teams: McGill, Montreal Amateur Athletic Association, Montreal Victorians, Montreal Crystals, Ottawa Hockey Club.

June 15, 2011: First time the Vancouver Canucks win a Stanley Cup…??? … and FAILED!!!

Origin of the Puck: Believed to derive from the Scottish and Gaelic word puck or Irish word poc, meaning to poke, punch or deliver a blow.

Hockey is believed to have several derivations. The most common seems to be the old French word hoquet, meaning curved stick or shepherds crook.

Alright hockey fans… just remember to keep your stick on the ice.

CH

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