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Ranking the Best Hockey-Related Movies

Best hockey movies
Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

A good hockey movie is hard to come by of late. It is a good thing that there are some classics that continue to stand the test of time. Of course some of these have spawned bad sequels, but at least we still have the originals. A few from the last 25 years break the top 15, but there is one from 1977 that may never be topped.

15. Net Worth

Net Worth was a TV movie about Ted Lindsay and Doug Harvey as they fight for players against the owners. It deals primarily with the conflict between Lindsay and Jack Adams. The movie is based on a true story and Lindsay's efforts in real life led to the development of the NHL Players Association. Net Worth won four Gemini Awards.

14. Idol of the Crowds

Idol of the Crowds
Anne-Marie Sorvin-USA TODAY Sports

14. Idol of the Crowds

Idol of the Crowds2
Anne-Marie Sorvin-USA TODAY Sports

Idols of the Crowds sees John Wayne trade in the wild west for the ice. It has a chicken farm, gangsters, points shaving and a love interest. Wayne plays Johnny Hansen, a retired hockey player that returns to the game simply to fund the growth of his farm.

13. The Rhino Brothers

Rhino Brothers
Anne-Marie Sorvin-USA TODAY Sports

13. The Rhino Brothers

Rhino Brothers2
Anne-Marie Sorvin-USA TODAY Sports

The Rhino Brothers is a 2002 movie about a Canadian family and one son's hope of making it to the professional game. The cast isn't a bunch of big name stars but they played a small town hockey family well and made it easy to connect emotionally. It is a good story that catches the viewer and keeps moving the plot along.

12. Sudden Death

This is more of a terrorism movie but it just so happens that Jean-Claude Van Damme's character is trying to rescue the Vice President from the Civic Arena while the Stanley Cup Finals are underway. There is a fight with the Pittsburgh Penguins mascot, Iceburgh, and some classic Van Damme moves.

11. Les Boys

This is a 1997 movie made in Quebec and delivered in French. It is about an amateur hockey league that is basically one step above a beer league. It follows a team made up of guys from plenty of professions. The owner of the team is in debt to the mob and all debts are put on a game between Les Boys and the gangster's team. The box office returns were much higher than expected and a couple sequels were made.

10. The Rocket

The movie is about Maurice Richard as portrayed by Roy Dupuis. Many NHL players make an appearance such as Vincent Lecavalier and Pascal Dupuis. The film follows Richard from a teenager until the year before the Montreal Canadiens win their fifth Stanley Cup. It highlights the many times that Richard was targeted by opponents to the point that it seems like everyone was out to get him.

9. Pond Hockey

This documentary examines the expansion of pond hockey and the culture that surrounds it. Sidney Crosby and Wayne Gretzky make cameos. The U.S. Pond Hockey Championships are shown in depth as well, which is showcased phenomenally. This film was the winner of the "Audience Award" at the 2008 Landlocked International Film Festival.

8. D3: The Mighty Ducks

The last of the trilogy starts out tumultuous with Coach Bombay leaving the team. Eden Hall Academy erupts with in-fighting and Hans passes away. You may have cried during the funeral scene. It's okay. You are not alone. Paul Kariya makes an appearance in the movie as well.

7. Face-Off

This 1971 film is a love story that features several NHL players. The romance between the Toronto Maple Leafs rookie and the musician isn't working. Hockey is too rough for the musician and adapting to life in the NHL is too crazy for the rookie. Molson beer is easily spotted in the film before product placement was a given.

6. Mystery, Alaska

Another story about an amateur team makes the list. This team from a fictional town gets a match with the New York Rangers that is a long way from the usual games of pond hockey. Russell Crowe, Mary McCormack, Burt Reynolds and Hank Azaria star in the film that was shot in a town built solely for the filming of Mystery, Alaska.

5. Youngblood

This is a classic 80s tale that stars Rob Lowe and Keanu Reaves. It also takes place in Thunder Bay which is a big hockey community and home to many NHL stars. Lowe is in the junior ranks and has the reputation of being soft. It is really a story line that a lot of 80s movies followed, but it weaves hockey in well.

4. Goon

The movie highlights an area of hockey that many want out of the game. Foul language and violence persist throughout the movie, but there are good elements of humor to lighten the mood.

3. Miracle

The speech is amazing and the story will live on forever. One of the biggest upsets in sports history was captured well, but it is a Disney movie with some embellishments. Kurt Russell does well as Herb Brooks. There are goosebumps even for those that weren't born or can't remember the miracle at Lake Placid.

2. The Mighty Ducks

Cake Eater. Kids Movie. Disney. Movie franchise. The original Mighty Ducks movie seems to get better with age and parts of the movie are reenacted by new generations over and over. Coach Bombay is a great name for a main character and one of the other actors in the movie had a role playing alongside Pauley Shore. Of course it's completely mythical, but that is the fun in it.

1. Slap Shot

No matter how long Hollywood tries to make movies about hockey this will stand at the top. Paul Newman's character and the Hanson Brothers alone are enough to put this at the top of the list. All it took was chaos for the team to play better and some fighting, blood and coke-bottle glasses are just good for cinematic effect.