Sometimes, late at night, I wish I still had my Super Nintendo. I mean, don't get me wrong, NHL 09 on the XBOX 360 is sublime, but NHL 94 might be the greatest hockey game ever made.
The body checking, the slapshots, and, oh, for the first time in hockey video games, the one-timers.
I made beautiful music with a number of teams:
Toronto Maple Leafs: Doug Gilmour, Dave Andreychuk, and Nikolai Borschevsky, with Dave Ellett running shit on the point. Enough said.
Chicago Blackhawks: Jeremy Roenick was an absolute force at centre ice; he could do it all. His slapshot might have been the game's best. As a youth, I developed a man-crush on J.R. solely because of NHL 94.
Quebec Nordiques: Ah, the good old Nordiques. Joe Sakic, Mats Sundin, and Owen Nolan, with Steve Duchesne and Curtis Leschyshyn on the back end. The goaltending was weak, I think Stephane Fiset was the starter, but I always made sure to score a boat load of goals with the youthful Mats, whose NHL 94 slapshot rivaled Roenick's.
Pittsburgh Penguins: Mario Lemieux, Jaromir Jagr, and Kevin Stevens. Let me tell you, it was one-timer madness. And the rugged left winger Stevens was always good for a cheap wrap around goal when I needed one.
And, for the record, I was, and still am, arguably the greatest to ever play NHL 94 on the SNES. If you've got the system and the game lying around, holla atcha boy, for old times' sake.