April 30, 2013

Jamie Baker

April 30, 1994: Jamie Baker scored the game-winning goal late in the third period as the Western Conference #8 seed San Jose Sharks defeated the top-ranked Detroit Red Wings 3-2 at Detroit in Game 7 of the Conference Quarter-Finals.

The Sharks became the first team since the 1975 New York Islanders to advance to the second round in their Stanley Cup playoffs debut.

Needless to say, it was the biggest goal of Jamie Baker's career.

That's not to say Baker didn't have a notable career. A graduate of St. Lawrence University, Baker played 404 games in the NHL, plus another 25 in the playoffs. He totalled 76 goals and 159 points in that time. He also played with Ottawa, Quebec and Toronto but is remembered as a strong penalty killer and playoff hero in San Jose.

Baker was a strong positional player which allowed him to compete against speedier opponents. He also played within his limitations. He was never going to try to overpower a goalie with his shot or dipsy-doodle through half the team. Instead he used his good strength to dig for pucks in the dirty areas. Once he got the puck he was able to take a couple of seconds to make a play with it.

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