As 2011 comes to a close, it is time to reflect on the many people and moments that kept fans enthralled.
The year began with the game's biggest star sustaining a head injury that still threatens his career. Player safety became the NHL's biggest concern as a new sheriff was appointed to help clean up the game.
We saw a 37-year-old goaltender, once thought of as a career minor leaguer, steal the show on the games biggest stage. A Hart Trophy candidate emerged out of the Golden State, and sadly in the offseason, three players lost their lives.
It was a year that left players, management and fans asking questions about the game's future. All in all, it was an amazing ride.
Let's take a look at the people that contributed mightily to the year that was.