The plays that turn the tide in every game of playoff action -- that is what the beauty of hockey history is built on.
Check back every night following all the 2009 playoff action to witness NHL.com's game-changing moment from each game, as well as the rest of each game's goals, saves and hits.
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Thanks to all who voted -- and enjoy the 2009 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs!
Stanley Cup Finals - Game 1 - Pittsburgh at Detroit
A) Orpik levels Hossa -
The Wings were controlling the pace of play in the first eight minutes of the game, outshooting the Penguins and keeping the puck in the Pittsburgh zone for the majority of the time. But moments after Marian Hossa
attempted to lay a hit on one of his former teammates, the ex-Pen got a response from Brooks Orpik
. With Hossa skating across the neutral zone, Orpik found the winger with his head down and laid a massive check into one of the league's top snipers.
While it would be a few minutes before Hossa would have his wits about him again, Orpik's hit set the tone for a very physical period that featured 32 hits, even from the likes of Sidney Crosby
, who would spin Henrik Zetterberg
around at center ice moments later.
B) Stuart's bounce -
Pittsburgh made two costly errors later in the first period as Rob Scuderi
turned the puck over behind the Penguins' net, handing it right to Marian Hossa
. While Marc-Andre Fleury
would make a save on Hossa's blast, Tyler Kennedy
then turned the puck over again on an attempted clear. Brad Stuart
picked up the puck at the point and fired a shot that went wide of the net, but the rubber would bounce of Joe Louis Arena's lively endboards and hit the back of Fleury's leg, redirecting it into the net.
Stuart's bizarre tally took away the momentum gained by Pittsburgh establishing the physical edge, giving Detroit the first lead of the Finals.
C) Fedotenko's reach -
Five minutes after Brad Stuart
took advantage of a Pittsburgh turnover to give the Wings the first lead of the game, Stuart made a turnover of his own. While attempting to clear the puck, Stuart's shot was picked up off the left halfboards by Evgeni Malkin
, who fired a blast at Chris Osgood
. While Osgood made the save, he was unable to control the rebound, leaving space for Ruslan Fedotenko
to skate across and pick up the puck, backhanded it past an outstretched Osgood.
Fedotenko's goal tied up the game with just 83 seconds left in the first period, giving the Penguins the momentum as Game 1 hit the first intermission.
D) Ozzy stones Malkin -
With Detroit putting on the pressure and the score tied early in the second period, Evgeni Malkin
managed to poke check the puck away from Niklas Kronwall
at the Pittsburgh blue line. Malkin took the rubber through the neutral zone on a breakaway and bore in on the Wings' Chris Osgood
. When Malkin let the puck fly, Osgood was squared up to the Russian sniper and managed to make a glove save.
Osgood's save kept the game tied in a tense second period, with Malkin's breakaway one of many chances for the Penguins that went unfulfilled.
E) Franzen's winner -
With the game tied late in the second period, Brian Rafalski
took a shot on the Pittsburgh net which was blocked in front, but the puck was picked up by Johan Franzen
, who skated past the right side of the net and attempted to center the puck. The Mule's pass would bounce off Marc-Andre Fleury
and into the goal, giving the Wings a 2-1 lead just before the second intermission.
While Detroit would add to their advantage on a third-period score by Justin Abdelkader
, Franzen's goal gave the Wings the lead for good, allowing Chris Osgood
to close the door, as Detroit took a 1-0 lead in the Stanley Cup Final.
FINAL SCORE: Red Wings 3, Penguins 1