2003–04 NHL season

The 2003–04 NHL season was the 87th regular season of the National Hockey League. The Stanley Cup champions were the Tampa Bay Lightning, who won the best of seven series four games to three against the Calgary Flames.

For the fourth time in eight years, the all-time record for total shutouts in a season was shattered, as 192 shutouts were recorded.[1] The 2003–04 regular season was also the first one (excluding the lockout-shortened 1994–95 season) since 1967–68 in which there was neither a 50-goal scorer, nor a 100-point scorer.[1][2] This was the final season that ABC and ESPN televised NHL games. It was also the final NHL season before the 2004–05 NHL lockout, and the final season in which games could end in ties.

2003–04 NHL season
LeagueNational Hockey League
SportIce hockey
DurationOctober 8, 2003 – June 7, 2004
Number of games82
Number of teams30
Draft
Top draft pickMarc-Andre Fleury
Picked byPittsburgh Penguins
Regular season
Presidents' TrophyDetroit Red Wings
Season MVPMartin St. Louis (Lightning)
Top scorerMartin St. Louis (Lightning)
Playoffs
Eastern championsTampa Bay Lightning
  Eastern runners-upPhiladelphia Flyers
Western championsCalgary Flames
  Western runners-upSan Jose Sharks
Playoffs MVPBrad Richards (Lightning)
Stanley Cup
ChampionsTampa Bay Lightning
  Runners-upCalgary Flames

League business

The schedule of 82 games was revamped. The 30 teams played 82 games in a revamped format that increased divisional games from five to six per team (24 total), conference games from three to four (40 total), and decreased inter-conference games to at least one per team, with three extra games (18 in total).

The alternating of jerseys was changed. For the first season since the 1969–70 season, teams would now wear their colored jerseys at home and white jerseys away.

The Phoenix Coyotes moved to a new arena in Glendale, Arizona, after playing their first seven seasons at America West Arena.

Regular season

The 2003–04 season was one overhung by concern over the expiry of the NHL Collective Bargaining Agreement. It would lead to the cancellation of the League's games for the entirety of the next season. During the entire season, NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman and NHL Players' Association (NHLPA) head Bob Goodenow waged a war of words with no agreement being signed.

On September 26, just before the season was to begin, young Atlanta Thrashers star Dany Heatley crashed his Ferrari in suburban Atlanta. The passenger, Thrashers teammate Dan Snyder, was killed. Heatley himself was badly injured and eventually charged with vehicular homicide.

Entering the season, the two Stanley Cup favorites were the Ottawa Senators in the Eastern Conference, who had won the Presidents' Trophy and come within a win of the Stanley Cup Finals the year before, and the Colorado Avalanche in the Western Conference, who, despite losing legendary goaltender Patrick Roy to retirement, added both Teemu Selanne and Paul Kariya to an already star-studded lineup. Neither of these teams, however, were as successful as expected, with Ottawa finishing fifth in their conference and Colorado finishing fourth, losing the Northwest Division title for the first time in a decade when the franchise was still known as the Quebec Nordiques.

The greatest disappointments were the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim, who, despite making it to Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals the year prior and adding both Sergei Fedorov and Vaclav Prospal, failed to make the playoffs. The Los Angeles Kings failed to make the playoffs in large part due to a season-ending 11-game losing streak. In the East, the star-studded New York Rangers again failed to make the playoffs. The Washington Capitals, who were regarded as a contender, also stumbled early in the season and never recovered. The end of the season saw two of the most extensive housecleanings in League history, as the Rangers and Capitals traded away many of their stars and entered "rebuilding mode." The Capitals traded away Jaromir Jagr, Peter Bondra, Sergei Gonchar, Robert Lang and Anson Carter, while the Rangers moved Petr Nedved, Brian Leetch, Anson Carter and Alexei Kovalev to other NHL teams.

The most surprising teams were the Tampa Bay Lightning in the East and the San Jose Sharks in the West. The Lightning, who had a remarkable season with only 20 man-games lost to injury, finished atop the Eastern Conference, while the Sharks, who were firmly in rebuilding mode after a disastrous 28–37–9–8 campaign the last season, came second in the West and won the Pacific Division.

Two other teams that did better than expected were carried by surprising young goaltenders. The Calgary Flames ended a seven-year playoff drought backed by the solid play of Miikka Kiprusoff, and the Boston Bruins won the Northeast Division by a whisker over the Toronto Maple Leafs with the help of eventual Calder Memorial Trophy-winning goaltender Andrew Raycroft.

Goaltending was also the story of the Presidents' Trophy-winning Detroit Red Wings as the return from retirement of legend Dominik Hasek bumped Curtis Joseph to the minor leagues. At the same time, long-time back up Manny Legace recorded better numbers than both veterans and won the starting job in the playoffs.

Of note is the fact that the Nashville Predators made the playoffs for the first time in franchise history, though they were dispatched by a star-studded Detroit Red Wings team in the first round.

The regular season ended controversially, when in March 2004, the Vancouver Canucks' Todd Bertuzzi infamously attacked and severely injured the Colorado Avalanche's Steve Moore, forcing the latter to eventually retire.

Final standings

Detroit Red Wings won the Presidents' Trophy and home-ice advantage throughout the playoffs.

For rankings in conference, division leaders are automatically ranked 1–3. These three, plus the next five teams in the conference standings, earn playoff berths at the end of the season.

Eastern Conference

Atlantic Division[3]
No. CR GP W L T OTL GF GA PTS
1 3 Philadelphia Flyers 82 40 21 15 6 229 186 101
2 6 New Jersey Devils 82 43 25 12 2 213 164 100
3 8 New York Islanders 82 38 29 11 4 237 210 91
4 13 New York Rangers 82 27 40 7 8 206 250 69
5 15 Pittsburgh Penguins 82 23 47 8 4 190 303 58

Note: CR = Conference rank; GP = Games played; W = Wins; L = Losses; T = Ties; OTL = Overtime loss; GF = Goals for; GA = Goals against; Pts = Points
         Bolded teams qualified for the playoffs.

Northeast Division[3]
No. CR GP W L T OTL GF GA Pts
1 2 Boston Bruins 82 41 19 15 7 209 188 104
2 4 Toronto Maple Leafs 82 45 24 10 3 242 204 103
3 5 Ottawa Senators 82 43 23 10 6 262 189 102
4 7 Montreal Canadiens 82 41 30 7 4 208 192 93
5 9 Buffalo Sabres 82 37 34 7 4 220 221 85

Note: CR = Conference rank; GP = Games played; W = Wins; L = Losses; T = Ties; OTL = Overtime loss; GF = Goals for; GA = Goals against; Pts = Points
         Bolded teams qualified for the playoffs.

Southeast Division[3]
No. CR GP W L T OTL GF GA PTS
1 1 Tampa Bay Lightning 82 46 22 8 6 245 192 106
2 10 Atlanta Thrashers 82 33 37 8 4 214 243 78
3 11 Carolina Hurricanes 82 28 34 14 6 172 209 76
4 12 Florida Panthers 82 28 35 15 4 188 221 75
5 14 Washington Capitals 82 23 46 10 3 186 253 59

Note: CR = Conference rank; GP = Games played; W = Wins; L = Losses; T = Ties; OTL = Overtime loss; GF = Goals for; GA = Goals against; Pts = Points
         Bolded teams qualified for the playoffs.

Eastern Conference[4]
R Div GP W L T OTL GF GA Pts
1 Z- Tampa Bay Lightning SE 82 46 22 8 6 245 192 106
2 Y- Boston Bruins NE 82 41 19 15 7 209 188 104
3 Y- Philadelphia Flyers AT 82 40 21 15 6 209 188 101
4 X- Toronto Maple Leafs NE 82 45 24 10 3 242 204 103
5 X- Ottawa Senators NE 82 43 23 10 6 262 189 102
6 X- New Jersey Devils AT 82 43 25 12 2 213 164 100
7 X- Montreal Canadiens NE 82 41 30 7 4 208 192 93
8 X- New York Islanders AT 82 38 29 11 4 237 210 91
8.5
9 Buffalo Sabres NE 82 37 34 7 4 220 221 85
10 Atlanta Thrashers SE 82 33 37 8 4 214 243 78
11 Carolina Hurricanes SE 82 28 34 14 6 172 209 76
12 Florida Panthers SE 82 28 35 15 4 188 221 75
13 New York Rangers AT 82 27 40 7 8 206 250 69
14 Washington Capitals SE 82 23 46 10 3 186 253 59
15 Pittsburgh Penguins AT 82 23 47 8 4 190 303 58

Divisions: AT – Atlantic, NE – Northeast, SE – Southeast

Z- Clinched Conference; Y- Clinched Division; X- Clinched Playoff spot

Western Conference

Central Division[3]
No. CR GP W L T OTL GF GA Pts
1 1 Detroit Red Wings 82 48 21 11 2 255 189 109
2 7 St. Louis Blues 82 39 30 11 2 191 198 91
3 8 Nashville Predators 82 38 29 11 4 216 217 91
4 14 Columbus Blue Jackets 82 25 45 8 4 177 238 62
5 15 Chicago Blackhawks 82 20 43 11 8 188 259 59

Note: CR = Conference rank; GP = Games played; W = Wins; L = Losses; T = Ties; OTL = Overtime loss; GF = Goals for; GA = Goals against; Pts = Points
         Bolded teams qualified for the playoffs.

Northwest Division[3]
No. CR GP W L T OTL GF GA PTS
1 3 Vancouver Canucks 82 43 24 10 5 235 194 101
2 4 Colorado Avalanche 82 40 22 13 7 235 198 100
3 6 Calgary Flames 82 42 30 7 3 200 176 94
4 9 Edmonton Oilers 82 36 29 12 5 221 208 89
5 10 Minnesota Wild 82 30 29 20 3 188 183 83

Note: CR = Conference rank; GP = Games played; W = Wins; L = Losses; T = Ties; OTL = Overtime loss; GF = Goals for; GA = Goals against; Pts = Points
         Bolded teams qualified for the playoffs.

Pacific Division[3]
No. CR GP W L T OTL GF GA Pts
1 2 San Jose Sharks 82 43 21 12 6 219 183 104
2 5 Dallas Stars 82 41 26 13 2 194 175 97
3 11 Los Angeles Kings 82 28 29 16 9 205 217 81
4 12 Mighty Ducks of Anaheim 82 29 35 10 8 184 213 76
5 13 Phoenix Coyotes 82 22 36 18 6 188 245 68

Note: CR = Conference rank; GP = Games played; W = Wins; L = Losses; T = Ties; OTL = Overtime loss; GF = Goals for; GA = Goals against; Pts = Points
         Bolded teams qualified for the playoffs.

Western Conference[4]
R Div GP W L T OTL GF GA Pts
1 P- Detroit Red Wings CE 82 48 21 11 2 255 189 109
2 Y- San Jose Sharks PA 82 43 21 12 6 255 183 104
3 Y- Vancouver Canucks NW 82 43 24 10 5 235 194 101
4 X- Colorado Avalanche NW 82 40 22 13 7 236 198 100
5 X- Dallas Stars PA 82 41 26 13 2 194 175 97
6 X- Calgary Flames NW 82 42 30 7 3 200 176 94
7 X- St. Louis Blues CE 82 39 30 11 2 191 198 91
8 X- Nashville Predators CE 82 38 29 11 4 216 217 91
8.5
9 Edmonton Oilers NW 82 36 29 12 5 221 208 89
10 Minnesota Wild NW 82 30 29 20 3 188 183 83
11 Los Angeles Kings PA 82 28 29 16 9 205 217 81
12 Mighty Ducks of Anaheim PA 82 29 35 10 8 184 213 76
13 Phoenix Coyotes PA 82 22 36 18 6 188 245 68
14 Columbus Blue Jackets CE 82 25 45 8 4 177 238 62
15 Chicago Blackhawks CE 82 20 43 11 8 188 259 59

Divisions: CE – Central, PA – Pacific, NW – Northwest

P- Clinched Presidents Trophy; Y- Clinched Division; X- Clinched Playoff spot

Playoffs

Note: All dates in 2004.

The 2004 playoffs were considered to be wide open, with no clear favorite. All of the top teams had weaknesses. Tampa Bay and Boston were both young teams with no history of recent postseason success. Detroit, Ottawa, Colorado, and Philadelphia all had major questions in goal. New Jersey was marred by injuries to Scott Stevens and Brian Rafalski, while Vancouver was missing the suspended Todd Bertuzzi.

The first-round Eastern Conference matchups were notable for the number of heated rivalries. The Ottawa Senators met the Toronto Maple Leafs for the fourth time in five years in the always passion-filled Battle of Ontario. The Boston Bruins and Montreal Canadiens met in a resumption of the most common of all NHL playoff series, and one which the Canadiens have thoroughly dominated, including an upset win two years prior. The Philadelphia Flyers also played a hated division rival in the New Jersey Devils. The only non-rivalry was the Tampa Bay-New York Islanders series.

The West saw the resumption of the Vancouver-Calgary rivalry, which had been somewhat dormant as the Flames made the playoffs for the first time since 1996. In a less passionate but still interesting matchup, Detroit played division rival Nashville (whom they had struggled against during the regular season) in Nashville's first ever franchise visit to the playoffs. San Jose met the St. Louis Blues, while the always difficult four-five matchup saw Colorado and Dallas meet.

The Calgary Flames, a sixth seed, defeated the Canucks, the Red Wings and the Sharks to become the first Canadian team to reach the Stanley Cup Finals in ten years, since the Canucks lost to the Rangers in 1994. They faced the Tampa Bay Lightning, who defeated the Islanders in five, swept the Canadiens and defeated the Flyers in seven games.

Stanley Cup Finals

The Lightning beat the Flames in the Stanley Cup Finals, four games to three. With the Flames having a 3–2 series lead and the series going back to Calgary for Game 6, with the Stanley Cup in the building and with the game tied 2–2 in the third, Martin Gelinas of the Flames (who scored the series-winning goals in the Flames' three previous series) appeared to have scored the go-ahead goal. Gelinas redirected a pass towards the Tampa net using his skate that was kicked out by Lightning goaltender Nikolai Khabibulin. It appeared that before Khabibulin kicked the puck out, it had already crossed the goal line.[5] The play was not reviewed. To this day, many Flames fans argue that the puck was in. The game eventually went into double overtime, where Lightning winger and former Flame Martin St. Louis scored the overtime winner. The Lightning went on to win Game 7 by a score of 2–1 and captured their first championship in franchise history. Brad Richards, with 12 goals and 26 points in the playoffs, won the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP.

Calgary vs. Tampa Bay
Date Away Home  
May 25 Calgary 4 1 Tampa Bay
May 27 Calgary 1 4 Tampa Bay
May 29 Tampa Bay 0 3 Calgary
May 31 Tampa Bay 1 0 Calgary
June 3 Calgary 3 2 Tampa Bay OT
June 5 Tampa Bay 3 2 Calgary 2OT
June 7 Calgary 1 2 Tampa Bay
Tampa Bay wins series 4–3 and Stanley Cup

Playoff bracket

  Conference Quarterfinals Conference Semifinals Conference Finals Stanley Cup Finals
                                     
1 Tampa Bay 4     1 Tampa Bay 4  
8 NY Islanders 1     7 Montreal 0  
2 Boston 3 Eastern Conference
7 Montreal 4  
    1 Tampa Bay 4  
  3 Philadelphia 3  
3 Philadelphia 4  
6 New Jersey 1  
4 Toronto 4   3 Philadelphia 4
5 Ottawa 3     4 Toronto 2  
  E1 Tampa Bay 4
(Pairings are re-seeded after the first round.)
  W6 Calgary 3
1 Detroit 4     1 Detroit 2
8 Nashville 2     6 Calgary 4  
2 San Jose 4
7 St. Louis 1  
  2 San Jose 2
  6 Calgary 4  
3 Vancouver 3  
6 Calgary 4   Western Conference
4 Colorado 4   2 San Jose 4
5 Dallas 1     4 Colorado 2  
  • During the first three rounds home ice is determined by seeding number, not position on the bracket. In the Finals the team with the better regular season record has home ice.

Awards

The NHL Awards presentation took place in Toronto.

Presidents' Trophy: Detroit Red Wings
Prince of Wales Trophy: Tampa Bay Lightning
Clarence S. Campbell Bowl: Calgary Flames
Art Ross Trophy: Martin St. Louis, Tampa Bay Lightning
Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy: Bryan Berard, Chicago Blackhawks
Calder Memorial Trophy: Andrew Raycroft, Boston Bruins
Conn Smythe Trophy: Brad Richards, Tampa Bay Lightning
Frank J. Selke Trophy: Kris Draper, Detroit Red Wings
Hart Memorial Trophy: Martin St. Louis, Tampa Bay Lightning
Jack Adams Award: John Tortorella, Tampa Bay Lightning
James Norris Memorial Trophy: Scott Niedermayer, New Jersey Devils
King Clancy Memorial Trophy: Jarome Iginla, Calgary Flames
Lady Byng Memorial Trophy: Brad Richards, Tampa Bay Lightning
Lester B. Pearson Award: Martin St. Louis, Tampa Bay Lightning
Lester Patrick Trophy: Mike Emrick, John Davidson, Ray Miron
Maurice "Rocket" Richard Trophy: Jarome Iginla, Calgary Flames;
Rick Nash, Columbus Blue Jackets;
Ilya Kovalchuk, Atlanta Thrashers
NHL Plus/Minus Award: Martin St. Louis, Tampa Bay Lightning;
Marek Malik, Vancouver Canucks
Roger Crozier Saving Grace Award: Dwayne Roloson, Minnesota Wild
Vezina Trophy: Martin Brodeur, New Jersey Devils
William M. Jennings Trophy: Martin Brodeur, New Jersey Devils

All-Star teams

First team   Position   Second team
Martin Brodeur, New Jersey Devils G Roberto Luongo, Florida Panthers
Scott Niedermayer, New Jersey Devils D Chris Pronger, St. Louis Blues
Zdeno Chara, Ottawa Senators D Bryan McCabe, Toronto Maple Leafs
Joe Sakic, Colorado Avalanche C Mats Sundin, Toronto Maple Leafs
Martin St. Louis, Tampa Bay Lightning RW Jarome Iginla, Calgary Flames
Markus Naslund, Vancouver Canucks LW Ilya Kovalchuk, Atlanta Thrashers

Player statistics

Scoring leaders

Note: GP = Games played, G = Goals, A = Assists, Pts = Points

Player Team GP G A Pts
Martin St. Louis Tampa Bay 82 38 56 94
Ilya Kovalchuk Atlanta 81 41 46 87
Joe Sakic Colorado 81 33 54 87
Markus Naslund Vancouver 78 35 49 84
Marian Hossa Ottawa 81 36 46 82
Patrik Elias New Jersey 82 38 43 81
Daniel Alfredsson Ottawa 77 32 48 80
Cory Stillman Tampa Bay 81 25 55 80
Robert Lang Washington / Detroit 69 30 49 79
Brad Richards Tampa Bay 82 26 53 79

[6]

Leading goaltenders

Note: GP = Games played; Mins = Minutes played; W = Wins; L = Losses: OT = Overtime losses; GA = Goals allowed; SO = Shutouts; GAA = Goals against average

Player Team GP Mins W L T GA SO SV GAA
Martin Brodeur New Jersey 75 4554 38 26 11 154 11 .917 2.03
Marty Turco Dallas 73 4359 37 21 13 144 9 .913 1.98
Ed Belfour Toronto 59 3444 34 19 6 122 10 .918 2.13
Tomas Vokoun Nashville 73 4221 34 29 10 178 3 .909 2.53
Dan Cloutier Vancouver 60 3539 33 21 6 134 5 .914 2.27

Coaches

Eastern Conference

Western Conference

Milestones

Debuts

The following is a list of players of note who played their first NHL game in 2003–04 (listed with their first team):

Last games

The following is a list of players of note who played their last NHL game in 2003-04, listed with their team:

Player Team Notability
Valeri Bure[7] Dallas Stars Olympic silver and bronze medalist, 1-time NHL All-Star.
Shayne Corson[8] Dallas Stars 3-time NHL All-Star, over 1100 games played.
Vincent Damphousse[9] San Jose Sharks 1-time Stanley Cup champion with the Montreal Canadiens, 4-time NHL All-Star, over 1300 games played.
Ron Francis[10] Toronto Maple Leafs 2-time Stanley Cup champion with the Pittsburgh Penguins, 4-time NHL All-Star, 3-time Lady Byng Trophy, Frank J. Selke Trophy winner, King Clancy Memorial Trophy winner, over 1700 games played.
Kenny Jonsson[11] New York Islanders 2-time Olympic gold medalist, 1-time NHL All-Star.
Joe Juneau[12] Montreal Canadiens Olympic silver medalist.
Mike Keane[13] Vancouver Canucks 3-time Stanley Cup champion with the Montreal Canadiens, Colorado Avalanche and Dallas Stars, over 1100 games played.
Igor Larionov[14] New Jersey Devils 3-time Stanley Cup champion with the Detroit Red Wings, 2-time Olympic gold and bronze medalist.
Curtis Leschyshyn[15] Ottawa Senators 1-time Stanley Cup champion with the Colorado Avalanche, over 1000 games played.
Al MacInnis[16] St. Louis Blues 1-time Stanley Cup champion with the Calgary Flames, Olympic gold medalist, 7-time NHL All-Star, Conn Smythe Trophy winner, James Norris Memorial Trophy winner, over 1400 games played.
Mark Messier[17] New York Rangers 6-time Stanley Cup champion with the Edmonton Oilers and Rangers, 15-time NHL All-Star, Conn Smythe Trophy winner, Hart Memorial Trophy winner, Lester B. Pearson Award winner, over 1700 games played. Last active player to play in the World Hockey Association and the last active player to have played in the 1970s.
Adam Oates[18] Edmonton Oilers 5-time NHL All-Star, over 1300 games played.
James Patrick[19] Buffalo Sabres Over 1200 games played.
Felix Potvin[20] Boston Bruins 2-time NHL All-Star.
Rob Ray[21] Ottawa Senators King Clancy Memorial Trophy winner, NHL Foundation Player Award winner.
Scott Stevens[22] New Jersey Devils 3-time Stanley Cup champion with the Devils, 13-time NHL All-Star, Conn Smythe Trophy winner, over 1600 games played.
Steve Thomas[23] Detroit Red Wings Over 1200 games played.
Roman Turek[24] Calgary Flames 1-time Stanley Cup champion with the Dallas Stars, 2-time William M. Jennings Trophy winner, 1-time NHL All-Star.

See also

References

  • Dinger, Ralph, ed. (2011). The National Hockey League Official Guide & Record Book 2012. Toronto, ON: Dan Diamond & Associates. ISBN 978-1-894801-22-5.
Notes
  1. ^ a b "2003-04 NHL Summary - Hockey-Reference.com". Hockey-Reference.com. Archived from the original on April 19, 2018. Retrieved May 9, 2018.
  2. ^ "1967-68 NHL Summary - Hockey-Reference.com". Hockey-Reference.com. Archived from the original on June 16, 2017. Retrieved May 9, 2018.
  3. ^ a b c d e f "2003-2004 Division Standings". National Hockey League. Retrieved March 26, 2012.
  4. ^ a b "2003–2004 Standings by Conference". National Hockey League. Retrieved March 26, 2012.
  5. ^ TheXen0 (September 2, 2009). "Martin Gelinas Phantom Goal, Did The Puck Go In?". Archived from the original on June 17, 2016. Retrieved May 9, 2018 – via YouTube.
  6. ^ Dinger, Ralph, ed. (2009). The National Hockey League Official Guide & Record Book/2010. Dan Diamond & Associates. p. 162.
  7. ^ "Former Hab Valeri Bure now has his own wine label". montrealgazette.com. February 26, 2014. Archived from the original on October 14, 2017. Retrieved May 9, 2018.
  8. ^ nurun.com. "Shayne Corson speaks out about colitis". Napanee Guide. Retrieved May 9, 2018.
  9. ^ "Criminal charges dropped against former Hab Vincent Damphousse's ex-wife - CBC News". cbc.ca. Archived from the original on October 1, 2016. Retrieved May 9, 2018.
  10. ^ "Ron Francis to have number retired by Carolina". sootoday.com. Archived from the original on December 20, 2016. Retrieved May 9, 2018.
  11. ^ "Former Toronto Maple Leafs defenceman Kenny Jonsson retires". NHL.com. Archived from the original on September 16, 2016. Retrieved May 9, 2018.
  12. ^ "Where are they now? Joe Juneau - Historical Website of the Montreal Canadiens". ourhistory.canadiens.com. Archived from the original on September 14, 2016. Retrieved May 9, 2018.
  13. ^ "Former Star Mike Keane Expected to Retire". defendingbigd.com. Archived from the original on October 1, 2016. Retrieved May 9, 2018.
  14. ^ MacIntyre, Iain. "Igor Larionov's take on NHL lockout? 'We can’t afford to lose another season'". vancouversun.com. Archived from the original on December 20, 2016. Retrieved May 9, 2018.
  15. ^ "Curtis Leschyshyn Retires". NHL.com. Archived from the original on May 19, 2017. Retrieved May 9, 2018.
  16. ^ "Hard-shooting defenseman Al MacInnis retires". ESPN.com. September 9, 2005. Archived from the original on September 15, 2016. Retrieved May 9, 2018.
  17. ^ "No more Mess: NHL great retires after 25 seasons". ESPN.com. September 12, 2005. Archived from the original on April 29, 2018. Retrieved May 9, 2018.
  18. ^ "OATES RETIRES FROM NHL". highbeam.com. April 5, 2004. Archived from the original on December 9, 2017. Retrieved May 9, 2018.
  19. ^ "James Patrick retires from NHL - CBC Sports". cbc.ca. Archived from the original on October 1, 2016. Retrieved May 9, 2018.
  20. ^ "NHL lockout leaves the old guys behind". nationalpost.com. November 27, 2012. Retrieved May 9, 2018.
  21. ^ Press, The Canadian. "Retired Buffalo Sabres enforcer Rob Ray sues NHLPA, again - The Hockey News". thehockeynews.com. Archived from the original on May 19, 2017. Retrieved May 9, 2018.
  22. ^ "Stevens retires after 22 years". ESPN.com. September 6, 2005. Archived from the original on September 15, 2016. Retrieved May 9, 2018.
  23. ^ "FROM THE ICE Steve Thomas reportedly talking to other teams". todaysslapshot.com. Archived from the original on October 9, 2016. Retrieved May 9, 2018.
  24. ^ "Wednesday roundup: Turek retires from Flames, NHL". ESPN.com. August 10, 2005. Archived from the original on May 9, 2018. Retrieved May 9, 2018.

External links

2003 Heritage Classic

The Heritage Classic was an outdoor ice hockey game played on November 22, 2003, in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, between the Edmonton Oilers and the Montreal Canadiens. It was the first National Hockey League (NHL) game to be played outdoors as a part of regular season play. The Heritage Classic concept was modeled after the success of the "Cold War" game between the University of Michigan and Michigan State University in 2001. The game was given the tagline "A November to Remember".The event took place in Edmonton's Commonwealth Stadium in front of a crowd of 57,167, despite temperatures of close to −18 °C, −30 °C (−22 °F) with wind chill. It was held to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Edmonton Oilers joining the NHL in 1979 and the 20th anniversary of their first Stanley Cup win in 1984. The CBC television broadcast drew 2.747 million viewers in Canada, the second-highest audience for a regular-season NHL game. This was the first NHL game broadcast in HD on CBC.First, the MegaStars game was played between some of the best former players from both clubs. The Oilers were represented by the best players from their 1980s dynasty, led by Wayne Gretzky. The Canadiens were represented by players from their 1970s dynasty, led by Guy Lafleur, and a few members of the 1986 and 1993 championship squads. Both teams were composed of players who had won Stanley Cups with the Oilers or Canadiens, except for the Oilers' first NHL captain, Ron Chipperfield, and the Canadiens' Russ Courtnall, who Rejean Houle said was selected for his speed. Cam Connor and Mark Napier were the only players that played for both the Oilers and the Canadiens during their NHL careers; both played for the Canadiens during the game. Mark Messier, the only active player at the time, received special permission from the New York Rangers front office to compete for Edmonton in the game and was the only player in the game to wear a helmet. The MegaStars game consisted of two 15-minute halves rather than three 20-minute periods, and was won by the Oilers by a score of 2–0. After the game, Messier jokingly called the low-scoring contest "a typical Oilers win," a reference to the numerous high-scoring games of the Oilers' heyday in the 1980s.

The second game was an official NHL regular season contest between the Edmonton Oilers and the Montreal Canadiens. Montreal won the game 4–3. Richard Zednik of the Canadiens scored the first goal of the game, and also scored the game-winner. Goaltender Jose Theodore wore a Canadiens tuque over the top of his goalie mask.The game was released to DVD by the CBC, and included special features such as player interviews.

Following the success of the Heritage Classic, in 2008 the league began a series of Winter Classics, an outdoor regular season game played annually on New Year's Day, which to date have all taken place in American-based NHL cities. The first NHL game to be played outdoors was an exhibition game on September 27, 1991, when the Los Angeles Kings played the New York Rangers outside Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. The next outdoor game to be awarded by the league to a Canadian-based NHL city was the 2011 Heritage Classic in Calgary, part of the Heritage Classic series of games.

2003 NHL Entry Draft

The 2003 NHL Entry Draft was held at the Gaylord Entertainment Center in Nashville, Tennessee on June 21, 2003.

Marc-Andre Fleury was selected first overall by the Pittsburgh Penguins, only the third goalie in NHL history selected as the first overall draft choice (Michel Plasse being the first and Rick DiPietro the second). Eric Staal was second, picked by the Carolina Hurricanes, and Nathan Horton was selected third by the Florida Panthers.

Many analysts have pegged this draft as one of the most talented groups, some even say better than the 1979 NHL Draft, ever selected in a single draft. Every single first-round pick went on to play in a regular season NHL game. Notable players to play in only a handful of games include Hugh Jessiman (2 games) and Shawn Belle (20). The player with the third-fewest games was Marc-Antoine Pouliot, who played significantly more, skating in 192 games. Fleury, Staal, Horton, Nikolay Zherdev, and Patrice Bergeron all played significant time in the NHL immediately after they were drafted. Milan Michalek also made the San Jose Sharks out of training camp that year, but suffered a serious knee injury that cost him the season. Calgary Flames' first round selection Dion Phaneuf scored 20 goals in his rookie campaign, becoming only the third defenseman to do so, after Brian Leetch and Barry Beck. Almost all of the top 10 selections played at least 10 games in the NHL in the 2005–06 season (Braydon Coburn is the only one to play less, at nine games). Mike Richards and Jeff Carter (Flyers), Zach Parise (Devils), Ryan Getzlaf (Ducks), and Eric Staal (Hurricanes) all led their teams in scoring in the 2007–08 regular season, and Dustin Brown (Kings) went on to become the winningest American Team Captain with two Stanley Cups, in 2012 and 2014. Later rounds also provided more NHL players than usual, such as Shea Weber (49th), Corey Crawford (52nd), David Backes (62nd), Jimmy Howard (64th), Clarke MacArthur (74th), Jan Hejda (106th), Paul Bissonnette (121st), Kyle Quincey (132nd), Lee Stempniak (148th), Nigel Dawes (149th), Marc Methot (168th) Joe Pavelski (205th), Kyle Brodziak (214th), Tobias Enstrom (239th), Dustin Byfuglien (245th), Shane O'Brien (250th), Matt Moulson (263rd), Jaroslav Halak (271st), David Jones (288th), and Brian Elliott (291st).

2003–04 Atlanta Thrashers season

The 2003–04 Atlanta Thrashers season was the Thrashers' fifth season.

2003–04 Boston Bruins season

The 2003–04 Boston Bruins season was the Bruins' 80th season of operation in the National Hockey League (NHL).

2003–04 Buffalo Sabres season

The 2003–04 Buffalo Sabres season was the 34th season of operation for the National Hockey League franchise that was established on May 22, 1970.

2003–04 Chicago Blackhawks season

The 2003–04 Chicago Blackhawks season was the 78th season of operation of the Chicago Blackhawks in the National Hockey League.

2003–04 Dallas Stars season

The 2003–04 Dallas Stars season was the Stars' 11th season, 37th overall of the franchise.

2003–04 Detroit Red Wings season

The 2003–04 Detroit Red Wings season was the 78th National Hockey League season in Detroit, Michigan. Despite multiple injuries to key players, the Wings found themselves once again winning the Presidents' Trophy for having the best regular season record in the NHL, scoring 109 points. In the post-season, they advanced to the Western Conference Semi-finals, where they were eliminated by the eventual Western Conference champion Calgary Flames in six games.

Two Red Wings were named to the roster for the 2004 All-Star Game: defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom and center Pavel Datsyuk. Lidstrom was voted into his eighth appearance at the All-Star game by fans, and Datsyuk was selected to the roster for his first appearance.The Red Wings sold out all 41 home games in 2003–04 as 20,066 fans packed Joe Louis Arena for every regular season and playoff game played in Detroit.

2003–04 Los Angeles Kings season

The 2003–04 Los Angeles Kings season was their 37th National Hockey League season. The Kings placed third in their division, 11th overall in their conference, and failed to qualify for the playoffs due to a season-ending, 11-game losing streak.

2003–04 Mighty Ducks of Anaheim season

The 2003–04 Mighty Ducks of Anaheim season was the team's 11th season in the National Hockey League (NHL). After making it to the 2003 Stanley Cup Final and losing in the seventh game, the team placed fourth in the Pacific Division and 12th in the Western Conference, thereby failing to qualify for the 2004 Stanley Cup playoffs.

2003–04 Montreal Canadiens season

The 2003–04 Montreal Canadiens season was the team's 95th season of play, 87th in the National Hockey League. The Canadiens returned to the playoffs this season and made it to the Eastern Conference Semi-finals after winning the Eastern Conference Quarter-finals against the Boston Bruins, 4–3, before being eliminated by the eventual Stanley Cup champions, the Tampa Bay Lightning, 4–0.

2003–04 NHL transactions

The following is a list of all team-to-team transactions that have occurred in the National Hockey League during the 2003–04 NHL season. It lists what team each player has been traded to, or claimed by, and for which players or draft picks, if applicable.

2003–04 Nashville Predators season

The 2003–04 Nashville Predators season was the Nashville Predators' 6th season in the National Hockey League (NHL). The team qualified for the Stanley Cup playoffs for the first time in franchise history, losing to the Detroit Red Wings in the first round.

2003–04 New York Islanders season

The 2003–04 New York Islanders season was the 32nd season in the franchise's history.

2003–04 New York Rangers season

The 2003–04 New York Rangers season was their 78th in the National Hockey League (NHL). The team finished with one of the worst records in the league despite bringing in future Hall of Famer Jaromir Jagr midway through the season. The team would eventually trade away most of its major acquisitions, including their long-time defensive stalwart Brian Leetch. This would prove to be the final season for team captain Mark Messier.

2003–04 Vancouver Canucks season

The 2003–04 Vancouver Canucks season was the Canucks' 34th NHL season. It was the first time since the Northwest Division was created that a team other than the Colorado Avalanche won the division title.

2003–04 Washington Capitals season

The 2003–04 Washington Capitals season was the Capitals's 30th season of play. The team finished in fifth and last-place in the Southeast Division, and fourteenth overall in the Eastern Conference to miss the playoffs. They had the worst season since 1974-75, and Nate Wright, Teddy Ortiz, Francis Pope, Chad Applewhite, and Jade Wilson only went to 5 wins that season.

2004 National Hockey League All-Star Game

The 2004 National Hockey League All-Star Game was held on February 8, 2004, at the Xcel Energy Center in Saint Paul, home of the Minnesota Wild. The Eastern Conference defeated the Western Conference 6–4. This was the final All-Star Game until 2007.

NHL Challenge

The NHL Challenge series allows select NHL teams to travel outside North America to conduct training camp and participate in exhibition games. Although the games are played on the larger European ice surface, they are officiated by NHL referees and linesmen using NHL rules.

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See also

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