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This Date in NHL History

April 23: Babando scores Cup-winner for Red Wings in overtime of Game 7

Plus: Gretzky gets NHL-record ninth playoff hat trick; Capitals complete historic comeback

by John Kreiser @jkreiser7713 / Managing Editor


1950: Pete Babando scores at 8:31 of the second OT to give the Detroit Red Wings a 4-3 victory against the New York Rangers at Olympia Stadium in the first Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final to be decided in overtime.

Detroit's Jim McFadden ties the game 3-3 with 4:03 remaining in the second period, and each team has plenty of chances before Babando beats Rangers goalie Chuck Rayner for the Cup-winning goal. It's his second of the game after he goes scoreless through his first seven playoff games in 1950.

"I was playing with Gerry Couture and George Gee, who took the face-off," Babando tells the Hockey News years later. "Usually George had me stand behind him. But this time, he moved me to the right and told me he was going to pull it that way. I had to take one stride and get it on my backhand. I let the shot go, and it went in."

No other Game 7 in the history of the Cup Final has reached a second overtime.

Video: 1950 Cup Final, Gm7: First-ever Gm7 OT



1964: Bob Baun scores one of the most famous goals in Stanley Cup Playoff history when he beats Detroit goalie Terry Sawchuk 1:43 into overtime to give the Toronto Maple Leafs a 4-3 victory in Game 6 of the Final at Olympia Stadium. Legend has it that the Toronto defenseman scores the goal with a broken ankle, though he says in 2011 that it was actually a broken leg. Baun is injured blocking a shot by Gordie Howe midway through the third period and starts overtime in the dressing room getting treatment. A few seconds into his first shift of OT, he takes a pass from Bob Pulford and takes what he later calls a "triple-flutter blast with the follow-up" from just inside the blue line that hits the stick of Detroit defenseman Bill Gadsby and floats past Sawchuk for the series-tying win.

Video: 1964 Cup Final, Gm6: Baun breaks leg, scores in OT


1985: Michel Goulet scores three goals and Dale Hunter gets the winner at 18:36 of overtime to give the Quebec Nordiques a 7-6 win against the Montreal Canadiens in Game 3 of the Adams Division Final at the Colisee. Goulet scores once in each period, then gets the primary assist on Hunter's game-winner.


1992: Scotty Bowman becomes the NHL's all-time leader in playoff coaching victories when the Pittsburgh Penguins defeat the Washington Capitals 6-4 in Game 3 of the Patrick Division Semifinals at the Civic Arena. It's Bowman's 115th postseason victory, moving him past Al Arbour. Mario Lemieux powers the Penguins with three goals and three assists. He also ties a playoff single-period playoff record with four points, scoring twice and setting up goals by Joe Mullen and Jaromir Jagr in the second.

1994: Tony Amonte scores four goals for the Chicago Blackhawks in a 5-4 victory against the visiting Maple Leafs in Game 3 of the Western Conference Quarterfinals. Amonte becomes the second player in Blackhawks history to score four goals in a playoff game, matching Denis Savard, who scores four in a 6-4 loss to Toronto at Chicago Stadium on April 10, 1986.


1997: Wayne Gretzky sets an NHL record with his ninth playoff hat trick when he scores three goals in a span of 6:23 during the second period, powering the New York Rangers to a 3-2 victory against the Florida Panthers at Madison Square Garden in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals. Gretzky ties the game 1-1 by scoring a power-play goal at 3:07 and puts the Rangers ahead 2-1 when he beats John Vanbiesbrouck with a slap shot at 6:46, finishing off a 2-on-1 break. His third goal, which proves to be the game-winner, comes when he takes a low slap shot that goes through a screen and past Vanbiesbrouck at 9:30.

On the same night, Lemieux scores on a breakaway against the Philadelphia Flyers in his last home game before beginning cancer treatment. The Penguins win Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals 4-1 at the Civic Arena but lose the series in five games.


1998: The Canadiens win their NHL-record 14th consecutive playoff overtime game by defeating the Penguins 3-2 at the Civic Arena in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals. Benoit Brunet scores the winning goal at 18:43 of OT.

On the same night, Geoff Courtnall sets a St. Louis Blues scoring record with six points (one goal, five assists) in an 8-3 victory against the visiting Los Angeles Kings in the opener of the Western Conference Quarterfinals.


2002: Brent Johnson of the Blues becomes the first goalie in NHL history to earn a shutout in each of his first three career playoff victories. Johnson makes 27 saves in a 1-0 victory against the Blackhawks at United Center in Game 4 of the Western Conference Quarterfinals. Pavol Demitra scores the only goal of the game at 18:43 of the second period.


2012: The Phoenix Coyotes clinch their first playoff series victory since moving to Arizona in 1996 by defeating the Blackhawks 4-0 at United Center in Game 6 of the Western Conference Quarterfinals. Mike Smith makes 39 saves to give the Coyotes/Winnipeg Jets franchise its first series win since 1987, when the Jets defeat the Calgary Flames in the Smythe Division Semifinals. Game 6 is the only one in the series not decided in overtime.


2018: The Washington Capitals become the first team in NHL history to win a best-of-7 playoff series after losing the first two games in overtime at home when they defeat the Columbus Blue Jackets 6-3 at Nationwide Arena in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference First Round. Alex Ovechkin scores two goals for the Capitals, who ride the momentum from their first-round comeback all the way to the Stanley Cup.


2019: Barclay Goodrow scores at 18:19 of overtime to give the San Jose Sharks a 5-4 victory against the Vegas Golden Knights in Game 7 of the Western Conference First Round. The Sharks trail 3-0 before scoring four goals during a five-minute power play in the third period. Jonathan Marchessault of the Golden Knights ties the game 4-4 by scoring in the final minute of regulation, but Goodrow's goal gives the Sharks the victory and their first comeback from a 3-1 series deficit in the playoffs since entering the NHL in 1991.

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