http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-542698

Even though the first records of a game known as “hockey” was in the 1700s, it wasn’t until 1875 that the first organized indoor game was played. It’s a sport traditionally played on lakes or home-made backyard rinks with packed snow around the edges serving as the ‘boards.’ The first hockey “world championship” was outdoors in Montreal in 1883.

In 1892, Lord Stanley (then Governor General of Canada) donated the first Stanley Cup as a tribute to his favorite sport. Back then, it was simply an award for Canada’s top-ranking amateur ice hockey club. It was only later that it evolved into today’s iconic symbol of North American hockey achievement. In fact, for more than 20 years, Stanley Cup games were ALWAYS played outdoors.

Interesting fact:
Some 80 years ago, Alex Antoine, a “star” amateur pond hockey player drew serious NHL attention, being offered a position with the New York Rangers but declined instead preferring to play official Pond Hockey.

Before multi-million dollar contracts, player lockouts and nationwide game broadcasts, hockey was so much simpler. A few guys passing the puck on a cleared patch of ice on a lake, driven by nothing more than a pure-hearted passion for the game they’d grown up playing. This is the game — and the moment — that pond hockey brings back to the game’s most genuine fans.

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