THIS DATE IN HISTORY: June 11
1969: The Chicago Blackhawks hit the jackpot at the annual intraleague draft when they claim rookie goalie Tony Esposito from the Montreal Canadiens. For their $25,000, the Blackhawks get a goaltender who wins the Calder and Vezina trophies in his first NHL season and wins 418 games for Chicago, earning induction to the Hockey Hall of Fame.
1995: The Detroit Red Wings advance to the Stanley Cup Final for the first time since 1966 when Vyacheslav Kozlov scores at 2:25 of the second overtime for a 2-1 win against the Blackhawks in Game 5 of the Western Conference Final at Joe Louis Arena. Kozlov’s eighth goal of the playoffs comes on Detroit’s 47th shot against Chicago goaltender Ed Belfour.
1998: Kris Draper’s goal at 15:24 of overtime gives the Red Wings a 5-4 win against the Washington Capitals in Game 2 of the Cup Final at Joe Louis Arena. The Red Wings trail 4-2 with less than 12 minutes remaining in the third period but force overtime on goals by Martin Lapointe and Doug Brown. It’s the sixth straight win in the Final for the Red Wings.
2012: Forty-five years after entering the NHL, the Los Angeles Kings finally reign as Stanley Cup champions.
The Kings, part of the NHL’s first expansion in 1967, defeat the New Jersey Devils 6-1 in Game 6 of the Final at Staples Center to cap one of the most dominant championship runs in League history. They become the first No. 8 seed to win the Cup, the first team to defeat the top three teams in its conference, and the first team, regardless of seeding, to win the first three games in each of its four playoff series.
“They’ve been waiting longer than I have, this city,” said Kings captain Dustin Brown, who received the Cup from NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman. “You dream of winning the Cup, and you know what, I’m glad I was the first King to ever lift it.”
The Kings blow the game open in the first period by scoring three times during a five-minute power play after New Jersey’s Steve Bernier is assessed a boarding major and a game misconduct for a hit on Los Angeles defenseman Rob Scuderi.
Goaltender Jonathan Quick wins the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP after going 16-4 with a 1.41 goals-against average and .946 save percentage.
2014: Henrik Lundqvist makes 40 saves to help the New York Rangers avoid being swept in the Final with a 2-1 victory against the Kings in Game 4 at Madison Square Garden. Lundqvist stops the final 26 shots he faces after Brown scores at 8:46 of the second period. Benoit Pouliot and Martin St. Louis score for the Rangers, who send the series back to Los Angeles despite being outshot 41-19.