From Calder to Stanley.
The first ever Stanley Cup for the Los Angeles
Kings was not the first championship celebration
for some former Phantoms stars. Jeff Carter, Mike
Richards as well as coach John Stevens were all
together in 2005 when the Philadelphia Phantoms
won the Calder Cup. And now, seven years later,
they are reunited to win Lord Stanley's championship
award in the NHL.
Kings Assistant Coach John Stevens was a 2012
inductee into the American Hockey League Hall
of Fame. The former defenseman actually won two
Calder Cups with the Phantoms. As a player with
Philadelphia in 1998 -- and as the head coach
of the team in 2005. Stevens had previously won
two Calder Cups before that as a player in 1988
with the Hershey Bears and in 1991 with the Springfield
Stevens' two young guns on his 2005 Phantoms
club were a couple of 20-year-old highly touted
prospects who joined the team late from their
Major Juniors squads. Jeff Carter led the entire
AHL in goals (12) and points (23) during the 2005
playoffs, while Mike Richards chipped in with
15 points in 14 games.
Jeff Carter joined the Philadelphia Phantoms
in the last week off the regular season after
completing his Major Juniors season in Sault Ste.
Marie, Ontario. The Flyers' first round pick (11th
overall) in 2003 had finished a fantastic season
with the Greyhounds where he lit it up for 34
goals and 74 points in 55 games.
He quickly showed that his scoring prowess would
translate to the professional level with his great
run in the playoffs that culminated in a championship
sweep of the Chicago Wolves in the Final.
This season, he was a late pickup of Los Angeles
from Columbus and came just in the nick of time
to help the Kings qualify as the eighth seed.
Without Carter arriving to help boost the stagnant
offense, Los Angeles might not have even made
the playoffs in the first place.
Carter scored two goals against New Jersey in
the Stanley Cup championship clincher on June
11 and led the way for the team with eight goals
in their 20 post-season games (tied with Dustin
Brown and Anze Kopitar).
Mike Richards came to the Phantoms even later
than Carter. His Major Juniors team, the Kitchener
Rangers, made a longer run in the OHL playoffs.
So by the time he made it to the Phantoms the
team had already started their championship run.
He played in 14 playoff games in 2005 scoring
seven goals and 15 points.
This season with Los Angeles he was vital as
well with four goals and 11 assists in the post-season
plus 18 goals and 24 helpers in the regular season.
Congrats to the former Phantoms who join a long
list of AHL standouts to win both the Calder and
Stanley Cups in their careers.
Check out the pics below of Carter and Richards
celebrating with the Stanley Cup. And compare
with the 2005 picks with the Calder Cup.