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Bits: Hamonic plays for Cup; Sharks ignore Bolland; 1980 look back

"The guys we're concerned about are the players like (Patrick) Kane and Jonathan Toews," said Dany Heatley ... "I'm more concerned about the guys with a lot of offensive and defensive ability."

>>From the pre-Game 3 FanHouse story, "Thornton, Sharks Dismiss Antagonist Bolland"

Didn't you just know once you read those quotes, that Dave Bolland would feature prominently in Game 3? First there was his breakaway goal that could have been the winner with under 7 minutes left. Then there was his OT assist to set up Dustin Byfuglien and all but seal the series. Why, oh why, would you poke the bear? (Cheap aside: After watching the OT goal, you wonder whether Heatley's concerned with any guys out there...'cept himself of course.)

Meanwhile, another guy who had a goal and an assist last night: Islanders 2008 pick Travis Hamonic, as part of Brandon's 5-4 OT win over Calgary in the Memorial Cup semifinal. Hamonic and the Wheat Kings now get a chance to avenge that opening-game thumping Windsor handed them. If they do, they'll lift the Cup at home. (Sunday, 7 p.m. EDT, NHL Network in the U.S., Sportsnet in Canada)

Newsday [$5 please] runs a weekend package by Mark Herrmann on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the Islanders' first Cup [sub. links, all of them]:

  • A lengthy retrospective, with quotes from many of the guys who were in their early 20s on May 24, 1980. Lorne Henning confesses after making that back-pass before the OT winner: "Al Arbour said that he would have choked me if we hadn't scored."
  • A bit from Bill Torrey, including how there were two sets of plans in the '90s -- one to renovate, one to build a whole new arena between the hotel and the Coliseum. Then ... "the team changed hands."
  • Herrmann with quotes from Ken Morrow. Essentially, it was a long but great year for the Olympian and Cup winner.
  • They also re-ran game stories from that day, including a joyous locker room, guys crying over getting over the hump, and Flyers -- mainly owner Ed Snider -- crying about the refs: "The officiating was absolutely disgusting. That was a good hockey team that beat us, but their first two goals were questionable. Denis Potvin had his stick too high when he scored and the Islanders were offside on their second goal."

And just because the NHL's "History Will Be Made" campaign ignores that fateful day, doesn't mean we have to. Once again, here's WebBard's clip of the Nystrom goal, properly treated as "History":

And another version, briefer and with a different tagline: