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NHL Network

NHL Network presents: Game 4 2011 Western Conference Semifinal: Predators vs. Canucks

Kesler, Canucks push Preds to brink of elimination with 4-2 win

Wednesday, 08.24.2011 / 12:00 AM / NHL Network

NHL.com

All summer long, NHL Network will be replaying the 2011 Stanley Cup Playoffs -- from every jaw-dropping goal to every highlight-reel save to every crushing defeat.

Each game of the postseason -- spanning the more than two-month period from the opening round to Boston's Game 7 clincher of the Stanley Cup Final -- will be shown on the Network throughout the offseason.

Fans can tune in at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. ET nightly for a different game -- and different chance to re-live history. A complete program schedule can be found on NHLNetwork.com.


The Western Conference Semifinal between the Vancouver Canucks and Nashville Predators would be all but decided in Game 4.

Either the Canucks would lead the series 3-1 before returning to Vancouver for Game 5, or the Predators would steal the momentum before the series shifts and make it a best-of-three series.


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Raising the Cup presents: Game 7 2009 Stanley Cup Final

Tuesday, 08.23.2011 / 12:01 AM / NHL Network

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When the Pittsburgh Penguins swept Carolina in the Eastern Conference Finals to set up a rematch with the Detroit Red Wings in the 2009 Stanley Cup Final, their motivation was clear. Having narrowly lost Game 6 at Mellon Arena in excruciating fashion a year ago, Dan Bylsma's squad hoped to turn the tide in this heated rivalry by bringing the Cup back to the Steel City.

After each team took care of business at home through the first four games of the series, Detroit stormed past Pittsburgh 5-0 in Game 5 at Joe Louis Arena to put the Pens on the brink of elimination again. But after a raucous Mellon Arena crowd willed its team to victory in Game 6, the series headed back to Detroit for an all-or-nothing Game 7.

In a first period filled with scoring chances, goaltender Chris Osgood and Marc-Andre Fleury matched saves to keep the game scoreless. Then, on the game's grandest stage, Pittsburgh's Max Talbot had a brilliant second period, scoring twice goals to give Pittsburgh a 2-0 lead on the road in Game 7 heading into the final period. But with 6:07 left in regulation, Jonathan Ericsson finally beat Fleury to cut the Penguins' lead in half and swing the momentum in favor of Detroit. Then came the looming question: Would Pittsburgh succumb to the pressure and drop a second straight Cup Final in heartbreaking fashion?

Not on this night.

Fleury stopped 23 of 24 shots -- including a brilliant last-second save on Nicklas Lidstrom's wide-open rebound, to secure a 2-1 victory. Pittsburgh overcame a 3-2 series deficit to avenge the previous year's loss and win its first championship since 1992. Led by Sidney Crosby, Conn Smythe winner Evgeni Malkin and the prowess of Fleury in net, the Penguins completed one of the most memorable franchise restorations in NHL history.
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Raising the Cup presents: Game 6 2008 Stanley Cup Final

Monday, 08.22.2011 / 12:01 AM / NHL Network

NHL.com

The 2008 Stanley Cup Final was a tale of two cities. The Pittsburgh Penguins, after drafting star centers Evgeni Malkin in 2004 and Sidney Crosby in 2005, were back in the Cup Final for the first time since the franchise won back-to-back championships in 1991 and 1992. On the other hand, the tradition-rich Detroit Red Wings came into the series with 10 Stanley Cup championships and were looking for more with home-ice advantage in hand.

The Penguins rallied in the final minute to send Game 5 into OT, then won in the third extra period to disappoint the packed house at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit and send the series back to Mellon Arena for Game 6. But the Wings took control early: Brian Rafalski scored just over five minutes into the opening period, and Valtteri Filppula added another in the second to give the Red Wings a 2-0 advantage. But Pittsburgh showcased its resilience with a timely power-play goal by Malkin to invigorate the home crowd and give the Pens a fighting chance.

Eventual Conn Smythe winner Henrik Zetterberg scored 7:36 into the final period to give the Wings a two-goal lead. But one last-ditch effort was in store for Pittsburgh, as Marian Hossa scored with just under 90 seconds to go in the game. Then, with the white-clad Mellon Arena crowd in full force, the responsibility fell on the shoulders of veteran goaltender Chris Osgood, and he came through one last time.

Osgood stopped 20 of 22 shots on the night and made a frantic final stand in the closing seconds of Game 6 to lead the Red Wings to a 3-2 victory and the 11th Stanley Cup championship in franchise history.
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Raising the Cup presents: Game 5 2007 Stanley Cup Final

Friday, 08.19.2011 / 12:01 AM / NHL Network

NHL.com

Entering the 2007 Stanley Cup Final, the stakes were higher than ever from a regional standpoint. As the Anaheim Ducks represented California, a state that had never seen one of its NHL teams hoist Lord Stanley's Cup, the Ottawa Senators looked to end Canada's lengthy drought -- no Canadian team had won the Cup since Montreal in 1993.

With the Ducks on the verge of a championship entering Game 5, the Honda Center crowd was ready to close out the series. The Ducks responded with a near-flawless performance. The Senators, who powered their way through the Eastern Conference playoffs, could not find momentum against J.S. Giguere and Anaheim's defensive front all series long. Ottawa was facing elimination, and the stifling Ducks' netminder did not help their cause, stopping 11 of 13 shots on the night.

Despite both teams combining for only 31 shots in Game 5, the Ducks still found a way to showcase their offensive firepower and make it an uphill battle all night for Ottawa. Andy McDonald and Rob Niedermayer scored in the first period to give Anaheim a 2-0 lead. Daniel Alfredsson, Ottawa's captain and primary offensive force all season, scored his 13th and 14th goals of the playoffs to keep his team within  striking distance late in the second period.

But Francois Beauchemin responded with a power-play goal with just over 90 seconds to go in the middle period to help Anaheim seize the momentum for good. Travis Moen notched his second goal of the game early in the third, and Corey Perry added another with 3:00 left to put the icing on the cake as the Ducks defeated the Senators 6-2 in Game 5. Scott Niedermayer won the Conn Smythe Trophy, powering Anaheim to its first Cup in the franchise's 14th year of existence.
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NHL Network presents: Game 2 2011 Western Conference Semifinal: Predators vs. Canucks

Halischuk's double-OT tally helps Preds even series with Canucks, 1-1

Thursday, 08.18.2011 / 12:23 PM / NHL Network

NHL.com

All summer long, NHL Network will be replaying the 2011 Stanley Cup Playoffs -- from every jaw-dropping goal to every highlight-reel save to every crushing defeat.

Each game of the postseason -- spanning the more than two-month period from the opening round to Boston's Game 7 clincher of the Stanley Cup Final -- will be shown on the Network throughout the offseason.

Fans can tune in at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. ET nightly for a different game -- and different chance to re-live history. A complete program schedule can be found on NHLNetwork.com.

Any playoff game is intense, but when overtime is part of the equation, the intensity reaches a different level. Double overtime is even more intense as the hockey world saw in Game 2 of the Western Conference Semifinal between Nashville and Vancouver.



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NHL Network presents: Game 1 2011 Western Conference Semifinal: Predators vs. Canucks

Canucks, Luongo blanks Predators to take 1-0 series lead.

Thursday, 08.18.2011 / 10:58 AM / NHL Network

NHL.com

All summer long, NHL Network will be replaying the 2011 Stanley Cup Playoffs -- from every jaw-dropping goal to every highlight-reel save to every crushing defeat.

Each game of the postseason -- spanning the more than two-month period from the opening round to Boston's Game 7 clincher of the Stanley Cup Final -- will be shown on the Network throughout the offseason.

Fans can tune in at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. ET nightly for a different game -- and different chance to re-live history. A complete program schedule can be found on NHLNetwork.com.


The one that got away. That's what the Nashville Predators must've been thinking after a 1-0 Game 1 loss to the host Vancouver Canucks in the Western Conference Semifinal.

With the Canucks coming off a dramatic, emotional Game 7 victory against Chicago in the first round just days before, a road win was there for the taking for the Preds. But despite Pekka Rinne's stellar 29-save performance, the Canucks prevailed, as Chris Higgins tallied the game's lone tally in the second period.

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NHL Network presents: Game 4 2011 ECSF: Lightning vs. Capitals

Thursday, 08.18.2011 / 12:01 AM / NHL Network

NHL.com

The Washington Capitals survived a roller-coaster regular season and ultimately went on to secure the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference. But after three narrow losses to the Bolts in the East semifinals, the Capitals stared at an 0-3 hole and faced elimination on the road entering Game 4.

After both teams exchanged goals in the first period, Sean Bergenheim continued his playoff surge by notching two consecutive goals in the second to give the Lightning a lead they would not relinquish. Marc-Andre Bergeron and Martin St. Louis added tallies in the third to help Tampa Bay earn a 5-3 win to stun the hockey world and sweep the Capitals out of the postseason.

Dwayne Roloson, a 41-year-old midseason acquisition, stopped 33 shots in another stellar outing -- this time, helping the Bolts punch their ticket to the Eastern Conference Finals.
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Raising the Cup presents: Game 7 2006 Stanley Cup Final

Thursday, 08.18.2011 / 12:01 AM / NHL Network

NHL.com

In the 2006 Stanley Cup Final -- the first after the work stoppage -- the Edmonton Oilers and Carolina Hurricanes found themselves locked into a riveting series that ultimately went the distance. The Oilers, who came into the series with a rich history and five Stanley Cup championships, were matched up against the Hurricanes, who were set for their most important series in franchise history after moving from Hartford to Raleigh less than a decade earlier.

Edmonton put together a masterful playoff run, as Ryan Smyth, Michael Peca and late-season addition Dwayne Roloson enabled the Oilers to reach the Cup Final. On the flip side, Carolina's memorable playoff run was defined by its veterans, as captain Rod Brind'Amour, along with teammates Bret Hedican, Glen Wesley, Doug Weight and Ray Whitney had played a combined 78 NHL seasons without winning the Cup.

However, the trend for the Hurricanes' veterans would change in Game 7 of this Cup Final matchup, as Aaron Ward and Frantisek Kaberle paced Carolina to a 2-0 lead after 40 minutes of play. But as they had all series, Craig MacTavish's Oilers never quit. With their backs against the wall, goaltender Jussi Markkanen limited the damage, and after Fernando Pisani lit the lamp just over a minute into the third period, Edmonton was back in the game.

But the rest of that period was dictated by rookie netminder Cam Ward, who protected the Canes' 2-1 lead by stopping 22 shots on the night. Ward's brilliant performance was complemented by a late empty-netter by Justin Williams to send Raleigh into a frenzy and Carolina to a 3-1 victory in Game 7. The Hurricanes' first Stanley Cup championship came full circle, as the veteran Brind'Amour finally hoisted the cup after 16 seasons in the League with tears streaming down his face, thanks largely to the 22-year-old Ward, who took home the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP.
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NHL Network presents: Game 3 2011 ECSF: Lightning vs. Capitals

Wednesday, 08.17.2011 / 12:01 AM / NHL Network

NHL.com

After two impressive showings on the road in Washington, D.C., the Tampa Bay Lightning stormed into the St. Pete Times Forum hoping to carry over the momentum and stretch their series lead to 3-0. On the other hand, the Washington Capitals were in desperation mode, hoping to find a spark on the road to revive their chase for the Stanley Cup.

After Sean Bergenheim scored the game's opening goal for the second time in the series, Washington showed a sense of urgency in the second period by scoring twice to grab the lead. Mike Knuble and John Carlson accounted for the first two goals, and after Alex Ovechkin added another later in the period, Washington was sitting pretty with a 3-2 lead entering the final stanza.

But as they did all series long, the Bolts rose to the occasion again as Steven Stamkos blasted a wrister past Michal Neuvirth to tie the game. Then just 24 seconds later, Ryan Malone tipped in the go-ahead goal to turn the tide in the contest. The rest was a formality, as Tampa Bay pulled out a 4-3 come-from-behind victory to take a commanding 3-0 series lead over the East's top seed.
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Raising the Cup presents: Game 7 2004 Stanley Cup Final

Wednesday, 08.17.2011 / 12:00 AM / NHL Network

NHL.com

NHL Network is going to raise the Cup all summer long.

Every day at noon, we'll roll out another Cup clincher to stave off your hockey hunger. Watch your heroes of yesterday win it all ... again.

Fans can tune in at 12 p.m. ET every weekday for a different game -- and different champion. A complete program schedule can be found on NHLNetwork.com (U.S.).


In what had become a trend, the 2004 Stanley Cup Final between the Tampa Bay Lightning and Calgary Flames would go all seven games. This marked the second season in a row that the Final went the distance and also the third time that had happened in the previous four. While the Flames were seeking their first Cup victory since 1989, the Lightning were still in search of their first NHL championship since entering the League in the 1992-93 season.

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