Jump into the 4th Line time machine and let’s take a ride into hockey’s storied past.
May 8th, 1988 – Yellow Sunday
Its game 4 of the 1988 Prince of Wales Conference Finals. The New Jersey Devils face off against the Boston Bruins at the Brendan Byrne Arena in East Rutherford, NJ. The following night Devils coach Jim Schoenfeld got into a verbal altercation with referee Don Koharski. This all happened to be caught on tape by a local cameraman. Schoenfeld words were heard all over NYC. Schoenfeld was later suspended and banded from the bench during game 4. The Devils management requested a hearing but NHL VP Brian O’Neill refused. The club deemed Schoenfeld rights have been violated and they would take the matter to NJ Supreme Court Judge James F. Madden.
After a few phone calls and harsh criticism of O’Neill, Schoenfeld’s suspension was lifted. We’d all like to think it would end here and time would heal old wounds; not so fast. Referee Dave Newell and Linesmen Gord Broseker and Ray Scapinello refused to work the game. this caused a long delay until the NHL found replacements. Three Devils off-ice officials were promoted to Referee and Linemen. Paul McInnis would don the stripes. Jim Sullivan and Vin Godleski would wear yellow scrimmage sweaters. All though the game was smooth sailing, most players expressed how distracting the yellow garb of the linesman was. Judge Maddens ruling would later be lifted and Coach Schoenfeld would serve his suspension during game 5. The Bruins would win the series in seven games and move onto play Edmonton in the Finals.
May 10th, 1970 – “The Goal”
Bobby Orr will go down in history as one of the greatest NHL defencemen of all-time. It was overtime of game 4 of the 1970 Stanley Cup final’s against the St. Louis Blues. Derek Sanderson fed the puck to Orr in front of the net. Orr beat Glenn Hall for the game winner. It also gave the Bruins its first cup since 1941. After the puck crossed the goal line, Orr flew through the air, creating one of the most iconic images in sports history.
May 12th, 1997 – Capitals fire Poile
One month after missing the NHL playoffs for the first time in his 15 year tenure, the Washington Capitals fire GM David Poile. Without a lingering contract to worry about the Capitals decided to go down a different path. The team was preparing to to move downtown, to play in the MCI center. Washington was 594-454-132 under the Poile regime. They reached the division finals only once and lost in the first round eight times. David Poile was shocked by the news and hoped it would never come down to this. He said “I bleed Capitals colors”