New Jersey Devils: 5 Strange Names On Stanley Cup

Turner Stevenson #24 of the New Jersey Devils celebrates with the Stanley Cup in the locker room after defeating the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim in game seven of the 2003 Stanley Cup Finals at Continental Airlines Arena on June 9, 2003 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Devils defeated the Ducks 3-0 to win the Stanley Cup. (Photo by Dave Sandford/Getty Images/NHLI)
Turner Stevenson #24 of the New Jersey Devils celebrates with the Stanley Cup in the locker room after defeating the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim in game seven of the 2003 Stanley Cup Finals at Continental Airlines Arena on June 9, 2003 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Devils defeated the Ducks 3-0 to win the Stanley Cup. (Photo by Dave Sandford/Getty Images/NHLI) /
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Richard Smehlik #2 of the New Jersey Devils (Photo by Rick Stewart/Getty Images/NHLI) /

Richard Šmehlík

Unlike some other players on this list, Richard Šmehlík had plenty of NHL chances, but it’s just surprising to see his name on the Stanley Cup next to the Devils. He spent nine seasons with the Buffalo Sabres before signing with the Atlanta Thrashers in the 2002 offseason. He didn’t spend much time there, and the Thrashers traded him in the middle of the season to the Devils for a 4th-round pick (the Devils also got a 6th and 8th-round pick in the deal).

Šmehlík played 12 games before the end of the season, putting up just two assists for the 2003 Devils. He ended up getting into five games for the Devils during that season, as the team had a lot of depth to help in case anyone got injured. That’s why they made the trade to bring in Šmehlík.

After 83 playoff games with the Sabres, Šmehlík was finally going to get his chance to lift the Stanley Cup. He said he wanted to retire after the season despite being just 33 years old. The Thrashers apparently wanted to sign him to a long-term deal, but he got a chance to win the ultimate prize and play four games in the Eastern Conference Finals.

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It was a fun run with the 2003 Devils. It was a true team effort, as 17 different players scored during the postseason. It was, unfortunately, the last time the Devils lifted the Stanley Cup. Hopefully, the team finally has the core to eventually get back there, and then some new strange names can go on the Stanley Cup under the Devils.