Nashville's Martin Erat scored a penalty-shot goal at 14:25 of the third period of the Predators' playoff game against the Chicago Blackhawks on Thursday night.
It was the first penalty shot awarded in a playoff game since Pittsburgh's Evgeni Malkin was stopped by Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist on May 1, 2008. Philadelphia's Mike Richards had the last penalty-shot goal in the playoffs when he scored against Washington's Cristobal Huet on April 15, 2008.
Erat picked up a loose puck in the Chicago zone and was in alone on goaltender Antti Niemi when he was hooked by Dustin Byfuglien and awarded the penalty shot. Erat skated in and whipped a high wrist shot from about 10 feel that went past Niemi's glove to give Nashville the final goal in a 4-1 victory.
Erat was only the second Predator to receive a penalty shot in the playoffs. Steve Sullivan was stopped by Detroit's Manny Legace on April 7, 2004.
Erat's goal was the 19th successful attempt on the 59th penalty shot in Stanley Cup history.
We've got to find a way to win a game. He's played well in the minors, now he gets his opportunity. We tried [with Jonathan Bernier]. The way I look at it, you get opportunities and you make the most of it. That's what [James Reimer] did. Now another opportunity is here and Sparks ... you gotta grab it. Is he ready? We'll find out.
— Maple Leafs coach Mike Babcock to the Toronto Star on recalling goalie Garret Sparks from the AHL to start Monday in his NHL debut
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