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GAME CHANGER - April 26, 2009 @NHLdotcom
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's game-changing moment from each game, as well as the rest of each game's goals, saves and hits.

You can vote on the night's best Game Changer.  Cast your votes after the night's action.

Thanks to all who voted -- and enjoy the 2009 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs!

Washington at New York - Game 6

The Capitals jumped out to a 3-1 lead entering the second period in Game 6 at Madison Square Garden. But the Rangers found themselves with an opportunity to pull within one goal midway through the second.

Sean Avery fired a snap shot that was stopped by Simeon Varlamov, but he left a wide-open rebound for Nikolai Zherdev. Zherdev pulled the puck to his backhand and then flipped it just wide of the net. Seconds later the Caps were rushing down the ice. Viktor Kozlov crossed the Rangers' blue line with Marc Staal being the only player between him and "The King." Kozlov faked outside, cut hard inside past Staal and then wristed a quick shot over Henrik Lundqvist's shoulder and into the top of the net.

The Rangers had a great opportunity to get within one goal in Game 6, but Kozlov's marker gave Washington a 4-1 lead and they never looked back.

FINAL SCORE: Capitals 5, Rangers 3


New Jersey at Carolina - Game 6

After going up by two goals early in the second period the Hurricanes knew that the Devils would began to press for a goal to get them back into the game, much as they had done in Game 4 -- the 'Canes needed to shut them down for good.

Mike Mottau of New Jersey tried to slap-pass to Zach Parise on the edge of the crease. The puck was intercepted by defenseman Tim Gleason, who spotted Ray Whitney and Eric Staal flying out of the zone. One saucer pass later the duo were streaking in on a two-on-one, with Staal scoring his second goal in less that three minutes and extending the Carolina lead to 3-0.

The quick turnaround from offense to defense, and subsequent goal was a backbreaker and effectively ended any comeback thoughts the Devils were entertaining.

FINAL SCORE: Hurricanes 4, Devils 0


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