1985: Edmonton right wing Jari Kurri, who spent much of his career playing alongside Wayne Gretzky, scored the game-winning goal in Edmonton's 7-3 Game 2 win against the Blackhawks in their third-round series giving the Oilers a 2-0 series advantage. Despite losing the first two games, Chicago would come back to tie the series at two games apiece with game-winning goals from forwards Darryl Sutter and Steve Larmer, but the Oilers would prevail in six games and went on to win their second of five Cups in seven seasons.
1989: Calgary defenseman Al MacInnis scored at 15:04 of overtime giving the Flames a 2-1 win and a 3-1 series lead of the Campbell Conference Final against the Blackhawks. MacInnis, a Hall of Famer revered for his rocket slap shot from the point, led Calgary with 31 points that playoff season. The Flames would finish off Chicago two nights later with a 3-1 win and would advance to the Stanley Cup Final for the second time in four seasons, but unlike 1986 where they lost to the Canadiens in the final, Calgary would win their first Cup in franchise history in 1989 with Lanny McDonald winning his first Cup in his last NHL season.
1994: New Jersey right wing Stephane Richer scored at 14:19 of overtime giving the Devils a 5-4 win in Game 4 of their second-round series with the Bruins. After losing the first two games of this series on the heels of a dramatic seven-game defeat of the Sabres in the first round, the Devils were able to defeat the Bruins in six games, but fell to the Rangers in the conference final in a memorable seven-game series. Richer tied perennial playoff performer Claude Lemieux with 7 goals for New Jersey in that playoff season. The next season the Devils would win the first Cup in franchise history when they swept the heavily favored Red Wings in four games in the Stanley Cup Final.
2000: Philadelphia defenseman Andy Delmore beat Pittsburgh goalies Ron Tugnutt twice and Peter Skudra once as the Flyers beat the Penguins 6-3 in Game 5 giving Philadelphia a 3-2 lead in their second-round series. Delmore, who wasn't particularly known as an offensive defenseman, would only score 3 more playoff goals in his career and would play just two more playoff games after this playoff year. After losing the first two games in the series, the Flyers came back and won the next four games, advancing to the Eastern Conference Final where they blew a 3-1 series lead against the Devils. This marked the third time in six seasons that Philadelphia had made it to the conference final.
2002: Blues center Keith Tkachuk scored a hat trick against Red Wings goalie Dominik Hasek in St. Louis' 6-1 win against Detroit in Game 3 of their second-round series cutting Detroit's series lead to 2-1. This game, however, was the only win the Blues would get in the series as the Red Wings eliminated St. Louis in five games. The Red Wings went on to win the Cup for the third time in six seasons defeating the Hurricanes in five games in the Stanley Cup Final that season, this was the third and final Cup that Detroit captain Steve Yzerman would win in his career.
Contact Adam Schwartz at firstname.lastname@example.org