Posted by: Adventures in Pucking | September 7, 2011

Man of the Day 9/7: Milan Lucic

Milan Lucic

Born June 7, 1988 (age 23) in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Left winger for the Boston Bruins

Lucic’s background is a pretty interesting one: he was born to Serbian immigrant parents who arrived in Canada at different times (dad at age 27, mom at age 2). His uncle Dan Kesa played hockey with Vancouver, Pittsburgh, Tampa Bay and Dallas. He’s a middle child of three brothers. He has Scheuermann’s disease, which can cause a curvature of the upper back. He almost quit hockey altogether after being passed up in the 2003 bantam draft, but I’m glad he didn’t! Instead, after that slight setback, he got on with the Vancouver Giants in 2005-06 and performed very well, leading the team all the way to the Memorial Cup. In 2006 he was selected 50th overall by Boston in the draft. Boston’s scouting director at the time said he was fortunate that Lucic was even still available then. He stayed in Vancouver for one more year, finishing first in team scoring and getting  the Giants to the Cup finals again as well as the CHL tournament final, which they won 3-1. (In 2011, the Giants honored him by placing him on a ring around the arena showcasing notable Giants alum and fans voted him the team’s best player of all time!) In his first season in Boston, he wasn’t totally sure if they’d keep him or send him back to Vancouver for a year, so he lived in a hotel. But he had a notable rookie season, including notching a Gordie Howe hat trick in an 8-6 show against the Kings. Obviously, Boston decided to keep him around! After two years in which he both produced and fought when needed, they extended his contract through to 2013.

Ladies.

Now, this season, he did behave rather badly during a December game against the Thrashers. He punched Freddy Meyer while referees were trying to restrain him and Andrew Ference, so Lucic got himself a match penalty for that, earning him a $2500 fine. He got an extra $1000 added onto that for ‘making an obscene gesture’ at the bench–I presume he flipped them off, something Ference would later do against Montreal and earn himself a stiff fine for as well. Bad boys! Otherwise, he had a good season, posting career-high goals and assists totals (30G, 32A, 121 penalty minutes in regulars; 5G, 7A, 63 penalty minutes in playoffs), leading the team in goal-scoring and tying with David Krejci for points lead. Then of course he eventually met the old hometown team, and defeated them, in the Stanley Cup finals. On a related note, it seems like Lucic can’t catch a break from certain rotten apples in his beloved hometown. In 2008, his Memorial Cup ring was stolen, so the Giants gave him a replacement before a Bruins/Canucks game. This year, he reported that people threw popcorn and peanuts at his family members, including his grandparents, as they watched him play in the Cup finals. He also altered his schedule for his day with the Cup after some decidedly loutish behavior that’s been covered here before. Vancouver: be proud of Lucic, even if he is playing for a different team!

Yes, be very proud!

-Emma


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