2007 Stanley Cup Finals winner: Anaheim Ducks

I made the mistake of visiting Digg last night where they had already submitted the story of who had won. Well, it didn't mar that much my enjoyment of the recording. No blood, but it was drama-filled (Chris Phillips shooting the puck into his own goal?) until the third period when the Ottawa Senators resigned themselves to the outcome. I don't think it helped their cause that they were locked out of their locker rooms before the game. What a cheap trick by the workers at the Honda Center. And to have the TV cameras there filming the visitors' forlorn faces.

But no one can deny the talent of the Ducks. Teemu Selanne finally got the Cup after 15 (?) seasons of bruising. He flew in his childhood friends from Finland to see him do it. At 36, he's the first player in NHL history aged 35 or older to record consecutive 40-goal seasons and the oldest player in to score 45 goals in a season. During his first year with the Winnipeg Jets in 1992, he scored 76 goals, still an NHL rookie record.

Conn Smythe Trophy for the playoffs MVP: captain Scott Niedermayer, the only member of the Ducks who had already won the Cup (with the Devils in 1995, 2000 and 2003).

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman handed the Stanley Cup to Scott Niedermayer who then gave it to his assistant captains: first his brother Rob and then defenseman Chris Pronger. It was next passed to Teemu Selanne, Marchant (an American!), O'Donnell, May, goaltender Jean-Sébastien "Jiggy" Giguère (who had been upset that his son was born with a deformed right eye), McDonald, Pahlsson...

Orange County Register headline: IMPEACHMENT.
Below the fold: Ducks topple Senators to take Stanley Cup.


This is the first time the Stanley Cup was won by a team in California.

It's the first time the Stanley Cup went to a West Coast team since the Victoria Cougars of the Western Canada Hockey League defeated Montreal in 1925, two years before NHL clubs began playing exclusively for the Cup,

Scott and Rob Niedermayer
- the first brothers since Brent and Duane Sutter of the New York Islanders in 1983 to win the Cup as teammates

Chris Pronger
- made the only successful penalty-shot goal in NHL finals history

Anaheim Ducks coach: Randy Carlyle

Senators forward Daniel Alfredsson
- the first European captain in finals history

song playing at the Honda Center during the victory celebration:
"You're Simply the Best" by Tina Turner

The NYT had this cute intro to their report of the Ducks' victory:
The Anaheim Ducks got their Disney ending after all.

They were named 14 years ago for a children’s movie. Their uniform colors were eggplant and jade. They had more mascots than any team in the history of sports. An animated Tinkerbell danced on the scoreboard after goals, sprinkling imaginary pixie dust.

To many sports fans, they will always be the Mighty Ducks, owned by Disney. But, in fact, they were sold two years ago. Their name was simplified. Their uniforms were changed. Their mascots — most of them, at least — were dismissed.

... The Ducks are no longer funny. They are scary.

A reporter, whom I shall not name, told Giguere to "Enjoy your son. Enjoy your wife." and then later got the backgrounds of Scott and Rob Niedermayer mixed up — while talking to them face to face!

This is as far as my hockey education will go for now.