The NHL has been around for over a century – and that's no joke.
There have been many a great match to make the history books in that century, and – of course – many a great hit. Some clean, some not so much. We've narrowed down our favorites to the Top 10 Canadian Ice Hockey Hits (in our humble opinion) down below.
Do you agree? What's your favorite hit of all time? Let us know!
1. Milan Lucic vs. Mike Van Ryn
Toronto Maple Leafs player Van Ryn had just shot the puck, and paid the price by getting one heck of a hit. Boston Bruins player Lucic slammed into Van Ryn, shattering the glass.
Definitely one to remember.
2. Cory Sarich vs. Patrick Marleau
There was thunderous roaring when Calgary Flames Cory Sarich checked San Jose Sharks captain, Patrick Marleau in the first period of Game 3.
The Calgary Sharks rose to a 4-3 victory as a result.
3. Aaron Rome vs. Nathan Horton
There's still some debate as to whether this one was a clean hit or not. While some say it is – the hit is still pretty late and to the head. Still, it gave an extra edge of excitement to the 2011 Stanley Cup Finals.
One thing's for sure, this hit from the Vancouver Canuck‘s Rome on Boston Bruin‘s Horton resulted in Rome's 4-game long suspension.
4. Andy Sutton vs. Jordan Leopold
Even the sportcasters sounded a little worried when Ottawa Senators' Andy Sutton floored Pittsburgh Penguins' Jordan Leopold at the 2010 Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Thankfully though, Leopold managed to get back up and get off the ice.
5. Mattias Öhlund vs. Phil Kessel
Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Öhlund hit home on Toronto Maple Leafs‘ Kessel in 2009.
That said, Kessel brushed himself off and still made 10 shots on net that game. Not bad at all.
6. Darcy Tucker vs. Sami Kapanen
Kapanen, Philadelphia Flyers, didn't know what hit him (literally) when the Leafs' Darcy Tucker checked him.
A lot of fans still remember this incident for the way that Kapanen subsequently wobbled his way back to the bench, completely disoriented.
7. Dion Phaneuf vs. Mike Sauer
While it was considered to be a clean check, Phaneuf's (Toronto Maple Leafs) hit to Sauer (New York Rangers) in 2011 floored him completely.
This particular hit will go down as one of the clear examples of the risks of hockey. Sauer made it out with a concussion, and has yet to return to the ice.
8. Drew Doughty vs. Taylor Hill
Doughty (Los Angeles Kings) swoops in and hip checks Hill (Edmonton Oilers) back in 2011. This one is an instance of a clean hit, and an example of the importance of keeping your head up.
Hill didn't take long to get back up, and get back in the game.
9. Wendel Clark vs. Bruce Bell
Back in the old days, your feet could leave the ice in a hit, and it would be clean.
Unfortunately, Bell (St Louis Blues at the time) felt the full implications of this when Clark (Toronto Maple Leafs) landed a devastating hit on him.
10. Scott Stevens vs. Paul Kariya
Although no Canadian team was involved in this one, we can't possibly have a list of top 10 hits in hockey without mentioning the Stevens (the ‘head hunter') – Kariya event.
In the 2003 Stanley Cup, Stevens – the New Jersey Devils captain – head checked Kariya – Anaheim Mighty Ducks – and completely floored him. But, in a victorious turn of events, Kariya recovered and proceeded to score the winning goal of the entire game. A great moment in ice hockey history, for all fans of the sport.