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Most not immune to embarrassing moments

Monday, 08.18.2008 / 3:41 PM / Features
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Most not immune to embarrassing moments
NHL players hope for glorious moments that prove to be unforgettable, but there also are plenty of instances that players as talented as Niklas Kronwall and Steven Stamkos would like to forget.

Steven Stamkos' most embarrassing hockey moment came during a nationally televised game in which blew a game-winning chance.
While there are many glorious hockey moments, there are also some that players would like to forget because of a memorable -- and often humorous -- gaffe.

Some of the best players in the NHL have suffered an embarrassing miscue. For instance, when Detroit defenseman Niklas Kronwall shot the puck into his own net in last season's Stanley Cup finals. Yep, he'd like to have that one back.

Like Kronwall, Steven Stamkos, picked No. 1 at the 2008 Entry Draft by the Tampa Bay Lightning, has a story of televised misfortune.

"My most embarrassing hockey moment came last year when we were playing the London Knights," Stamkos said. "It was the last game before the Christmas break, and it was on Sportsnet, so it was televised nationally across Canada. I remember getting pretty excited for that game, and it was a great game, went into overtime. I had a few chances, but I couldn't score. 

"And then it went into the shootout, and I remember with the Sarnia-London rivalry, it was packed in our arena. I had a chance to win it and the crowd was going crazy, everyone was standing up, and I could just remember being so nervous going up to the puck in the shootout, and I went down and I went to make a move and I can remember the puck just going flying into the corner. And I didn't even get a shot off. It was on national TV and I can remember just going back to the bench and I think I broke my stick over the boards. I went home the next day and watched my old minor midget team and I remember getting heckled coming into the rink. One guy asked me what I was going to ask Santa for Christmas, and if it was how to take a shootout."

Like Stamkos, Kyle Beach -- selected No 11 by the Chicago Blackhawks at this year's draft -- was in the spotlight during his most memorable mishap. 

"My most embarrassing hockey moment would have to be falling on a shootout," Beach said. "I didn't even get a shot on net."

Sometimes a mistake can happen before the game even starts, as Drew Doughty, picked No. 2 by the Los Angeles Kings, can attest.

"My most embarrassing hockey moment was probably when I was younger," Doughty said. "I remember we were in the finals and they were calling out the starting lineup and so skating out to the blue line I took a little spill there. So I got a little laugh from the crowd and that was pretty funny."

Alex Pietrangelo, selected No. 4 by the St. Louis Blues in this year's draft, also knows what it feels like to feel a little pre-game shame.

"My most embarrassing hockey moment is falling down in warm-up last year," Pietrangelo said. "It was one of my first games in the OHL. My helmet fell off, went face first, smacked my face on the ice and hurt my nose and my cheek. I was bruised up for a bit. I didn't know what to do, but I kept skating. It was pretty embarrassing for me."

I remember we were in the finals and they were calling out the starting lineup and so skating out to the blue line I took a little spill there. - Drew Doughty
Michael Del Zotto, picked No. 20 by the New York Rangers in '08, knows what it's like to fall, but his tumble came in front of some eager youngsters. 

"One time I was running a hockey camp with one of my assistant coaches and all the kids were excited to see me there," Del Zotto said. "This is when I just got drafted into the OHL, and I was demonstrating a drill and wiped out and they kind of laughed at me, and I got a little red."

Zach Boychuk, drafted No. 14 by the Carolina Hurricanes in '08, attempted a pass that went awry, which led to his team's demise.

"My most embarrassing hockey moment is when I was in a novice hockey tournament, and we went into overtime, but it was the overtime where the goalies are pulled," Boychuk said. "So you get an extra guy out there. And I tried passing the puck back to the D–man, and the D–man missed it, and it went in our own net. So we lost the final game of the tournament."

While the mistakes aren't funny to the players at the time, they often look back and have a good chuckle about it.



Author: Adam Schwartz | NHL.com Staff Writer

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