Skip to main content
You are the owner of this article.
You have permission to edit this article.
Edit
Here's why J.J. Watt is Cole Caufield's biggest fan
0 Comments
topical alert
UW MEN'S HOCKEY

Here's why J.J. Watt is Cole Caufield's biggest fan

  • 0
Canadiens Maple Leafs Hockey

Montreal Canadiens center Nick Suzuki (14) celebrates his overtime goal against the Toronto Maple Leafs with Cole Caufield (22) during Game 5 of an NHL Stanley Cup first-round playoff series in Toronto on Thursday.

J.J. Watt is as much a sports fan on Twitter as anyone else. Loves his Chelsea. Hates late start times. Loves questioning coaching decisions.

That last one has some background to it. Because as much as the NFL star and former Badgers defensive end has done in football, don't forget that he's a hockey player.

Cole Caufield was a healthy scratch for the first two games of the Montreal Canadiens' first-round NHL playoff series against the Toronto Maple Leafs. Watt had his fellow Badgers alum's back during Game 1.

Caufield, the Hobey Baker Award winner who scored 30 goals this season for UW then four in 10 NHL regular-season games, was back in the lineup for offensively challenged Montreal in Game 3.

That was better for Watt's viewing.

The Canadiens lost three games in a row after winning the series opener, then lost a 3-0 lead in Game 5 on Thursday as the Maple Leafs forced overtime.

It took Caufield less than a minute of overtime to make an impact. He forced a defensive-zone turnover and turned it into a 2-on-0 breakaway, where he played give-and-go with Nick Suzuki for the winner.

A victory lap, J.J.?

A look at former University of Wisconsin men's hockey players who have appeared in an NHL game during the 2020-21 season through April 28.

A Montreal reporter asked Caufield about his connection to Watt on Friday.

"He also went to Wisconsin. I think when you're a Badger, you're kind of a family," Caufield said. "No matter what your sport or where you come from, I think we're all kind of close.

"It's obviously nice to have a guy support you like that. He's a guy I look up to a lot. He's a great person and I thank him for his support and hopefully we can keep it going."

Game 6 is Saturday night in Montreal, where 2,500 fans will be in attendance — the first large crowd allowed at a Canadian game since the pandemic started.

An NFL Man of the Year probably will be watching from afar.

Look back on State Journal coverage of Badgers men's hockey games in the 2020-21 season

Read stories from University of Wisconsin men's hockey games in the 2020-21 season.

breaking topical
  • 0

Bemidji State was the aggressor from the beginning and kept UW from playing the brand of hockey it has used to generate scoring chances.

topical alert
  • 0

The Badgers paid for a lackluster effort in the second period as the Gophers beat UW for the first time in six championship-round games.

topical alert
  • 0

Cole Caufield scored his 27th goal of the season 6 minutes, 50 seconds into the extra session to send the fifth-ranked Badgers past the Nittany Lions 4-3 on Monday in the Big Ten semifinals.

breaking topical
  • 0

Cole Caufield scores twice to give the Badgers a 2-1 victory at Michigan State and the Big Ten title on the final day of the regular season.

topical alert
  • 0

Robbie Beydoun, playing in his home state, makes 28 saves as the Badgers keep the heat on Minnesota in the chase for the Big Ten title.

topical alert
  • 0

If a 7-0 victory against Ohio State at LaBahn Arena was Cole Caufield's last time playing at home for the Badgers, it was the kind of effort UW fans will want to remember him by.

topical alert
  • 0

Holloway scored twice on the power play to lead the Badgers past the Buckeyes.

topical alert
  • 0

Ty Pelton-Byce scored twice for the Badgers, including the tying goal with 26.8 seconds left after UW let two third-period leads slip away.

topical alert
  • 0

Coach Tony Granato went down the lineup in handing out individual laurels for good chances created, hits dished out or composed plays in the defensive zone.

topical alert
  • 0

The Badgers erase the sour taste of their largest loss of the season with their first victory at Michigan in their past eight tries.

topical alert
  • 0

A four-goal second period by the Wolverines was the difference after the Badgers took the lead.

topical alert
  • 0

No. 11 UW is alone atop the conference standings after completing its first series sweep at Minnesota in 12 years with an emphatic 8-1 victory against the second-ranked Golden Gophers.

topical alert
  • 0

Cole Caufield broke a tie with seven minutes remaining and Dylan Holloway figured in two goals in the following 2:18 as Wisconsin beat Minnesota 4-1.

topical alert
  • 0

Cole Caufield scores two goals for the second straight game and Linus Weissbach records his first three-point game of the season.

topical alert
  • 0

Robbie Beydoun stopped 19 shots for his second shutout of the season.

topical alert
  • 0

After falling behind 3-0 in the first period, the Badgers couldn't pull all the way back with a late push.

topical alert
  • 0

The Badgers scored two power-play goals to win at Penn State for the first time in five tries.

topical alert
  • 0

A third-period penalty kill was "probably the biggest five minutes of our season so far," Badgers coach Tony Granato said.

topical alert
  • 0

UW freshman Cameron Rowe makes 11 saves for his first shutout.

topical alert
  • 0

The Badgers outshot the Gophers but paid the price for turnovers, a slow line change and a bad penalty.

topical alert
  • 0

Beydoun made 35 saves as the Badgers knocked off the Gophers in their first game since Dec. 4.

topical alert
  • 0

Cameron Rowe made 40 saves in his first collegiate start as the Badgers split a series at the Buckeyes.

topical alert
  • 0

The Badgers have lost all three games since four forwards became unavailable due to COVID-19 protocol.

topical alert
  • 0

Sophomore Jax Murray scored his first two collegiate goals for the Sun Devils as the Badgers fell to .500.

  • 0

The Badgers were missing five forwards, one of whom sources said was held out because of a positive COVID-19 test and three others who were close contacts.

topical alert
  • 0

Caufield had his second hat trick for the Badgers and Tarek Baker scored a key short-handed goal.

topical alert
  • 0

Robbie Beydoun made a career-high 49 saves for the Badgers.

topical alert
  • 0

Missing their top two centers, the Badgers nearly emerged with a split against the sixth-ranked Wolverines.

topical alert
  • 0

The Wolverines scored three times in the final 5 minutes, 22 seconds of the second period to turn a deficit into a two-goal lead going into the intermission.

topical alert
  • 0

Dylan Holloway's third-period goal put the Badgers ahead for good after they lost two-goal and one-goal leads.

topical alert
  • 0

Linus Weissbach helped provide the offense and Robbie Beydoun was a stable presence in goal in the Badgers' 2-0 victory over No. 20 Notre Dame.

0 Comments

Be the first to know

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.

Related to this story

Get up-to-the-minute news sent straight to your device.

Topics

News Alerts

Badger Sports

Breaking News

Crime

Politics