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July 1, 2012

July 1, 2012

The Hockey News has been providing the most comprehensive coverage of the world of hockey since 1947. In each issue, you'll find news, features and opinions about the NHL and leagues across North America and the world.

IN THIS ISSUE

The Wait Is Over

Kirill Kabanov put it best: “It’s better than kissing the most beautiful girl in school,” he said, tears in his eyes, shortly after hoisting the Memorial Cup at the Centre Bionest in Shawinigan, Que. Kabanov’s Cataractes, who were upset in the quarterfinal of the Quebec League playoffs, won Canadian major junior’s most coveted crown for the first time in their history, despite being the only founding franchise left in the ‘Q.’ They entered the league in 1969-70 as the Bruins, became the Dynamos in 1973 and settled on their current nickname in 1978. But the Shawinigan squad didn’t make it easy on themselves. Having lost to the Edmonton Oil Kings the first game of the tournament and then the rival Saint John Sea Dogs in their final game of the round-robin, they…

IN THIS ISSUE

THN.COM COACH OF THE YEAR

When Ken Hitchcock took over as coach, the Blues were 6-7-0 and in danger of falling out of the Western Conference playoff race. But after he replaced Davis Payne Nov. 6, the turnaround was incredible. The rest of the season, the Blues went 43-15-11, finished first in the Central Division and tied or set 13 franchise records, including 30 home wins in a single season and a 21-game home points streak. Thanks to that success, the 60-year-old became a Jack Adams Award finalist for the fourth time in his career – and his first in 13 years. Hitchcock, who has built a 576-365-169 record behind the bench, was the clear choice as THN’s coach of the year, getting votes on all ballots and beating out runner-up Paul MacLean of the…

IN THIS ISSUE

JerseyHound

The Southern Pro League’s IceGators got off to a bit of a false start in the logo department, as the team’s initial crest in 2009-10 borrowed heavily from the ECHL team of the same name from earlier in the decade. It was cartoonish and kinda dull, but the new version sizzles. The current gator is realistic and aggressive, slithering around the lettering to produce a unique logo. The team has a nice color scheme going and the piping that extends from shoulders to cuffs is original, too. Definitely a great reboot in Cajun country.…

IN THIS ISSUE

Art Imitates Life With Real ‘Goon’

There are few professional hockey players who learned to skate on a pond at age 19. Even fewer of those late developers went on to become feared enforcers and win a championship at the pro level. And there is only one player who did both, then had a book and Hollywood movie written about his incredible life. That man is Doug Smith, a native New Englander raised as a Golden Gloves boxing competitor before a series of rare opportunities gave him the chance to become a minor league goon at a level as high as the American League. The book of his life, Goon: The True Story of an Unlikely Journey into Minor League Hockey, was made into the recent film, Goon (now out on Blu-ray and DVD), starring Seann William…