Posted by: Adventures in Pucking | January 8, 2012

Man of the Day 1/8: Michael Ryder

Michael Wayne Glen Ryder

Born March 31, 1980 (age 31) in St. John’s, Newfoundland, Canada

Right wing for the Dallas Stars

I got a little nostalgic for the playoffs recently and remembered something interesting Ryder did. Let’s learn about the man behind the glove save. Ryder was actually drafted by the Canadiens in 1998 (216th overall) after graduating from a hockey school in Prince Edward Island. He honed his skills with the Hull Olympiques and then a smattering of former ECHL teams and Montreal AHL affiliates (Quebec Citadelles?) before settling in with current affiliate Hamilton Bulldogs. His goal ended the longest game in AHL history when he scored at 14:56 of the fourth overtime period in a playoff game against the Houston Aeros. It’s like the AHL-level Easter Epic! After a very eventful 2003-04, including playing in the YoungStars game, he went to Sweden during the lockout.

2007 saw him, with the Habs, score a hatty against Toronto in a game where the Canadiens were down 3-1. They were also in a four-way battle for a playoff spot and that very game would determine who got into the big dance. (The Habs lost 6-5.) That next year, the Habs made an even bigger comeback against the Rangers in a February tilt, going from 5-0 to 6-5. However, despite these contributions, when his contract expired, Montreal did not renew it since he hadn’t contributed much more beyond the big ones. Boston snapped him up for three years, part of it being that Claude Julien had prior experience with him. In his first season as a Bruin, he scored his 100th goal and even got to meet the Habs again in a playoff sweep! He also got to see the Habs again in the most recent playoffs, where he made a killer glove save at one point to keep it scoreless:

Ryder plays ball hockey during the summer when he’s back home and is a goalie when he plays. However, he made that save on his blocker side, which surprised Tim Thomas when he was later asked for comment on the unusual save. In the end it doesn’t matter so long as it stayed out of the net! During Ryder’s day with the Stanley Cup, it accidentally fell off a table and got a little injured, but it was quickly fixed. Whoops! His contract with Boston ended, though, and he went to Dallas on a two-year, $7 million contract. He’s done well there so far: 40 games played, 17 goals, 12 assists and 22 penalty minutes. He even scored the game-winning goal when Boston and Dallas met on New Year’s Eve. So it goes!

Never forget the good times--or the great hair.

-Emma


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