If the rest of this Stanley Cup final is anything like Game 1, we’re in for a tremendous series.
Wednesday night was a superb display of end-to-end action and physical play by both teams as they traded goals and waves of momentum for over five periods. The Blackhawks scored twice in the third period to erase a two-goal deficit and force overtime but it wasn’t until the 12:08 mark of the third overtime that a winner would be decided. Andrew Shaw scored on a double deflection to give Chicago a 4-3 triumph over the Bruins and 1-0 lead in the series. It marked the fifth longest game in Stanley Cup Final history.
“The puck goes to the point. [Michal] Rozsival gets a nice shot through. [Dave] Bolland got his stick on it. I just happened to be going to the net wide,” Shaw told reporters afterward. “Kind of went off my leg into the net. An exciting moment. I think guys are just glad the game ended.”
From the Chicago Tribune:
By the time things turned into a slog, by the time legs became gelatinous and heads woozy and the teams had dispensed 50-something hits upon one another, the night seemed inextricably headed to one fateful bounce. But either side was going to have to work for it, pursuing it with abandon.
No better pursuer than Shaw, the professional irritant who aims to displease, but who also has just enough scoring knack — he has five goals now in this postseason — and sense to work in the hard areas to make himself that much more annoying.
For anyone who went to sleep before the contest was decided, or if you simply want to relive the highlights, you can check them out below.
>> From the Boston Globe: Bruins winger Nathan Horton was injured during the first overtime and didn’t return to the contest. His status for Game 2 is uncertain.
>> Yahoo’s Nick Cotsonika on why Game 1 was a masterpiece of everything fantastic about the Stanley Cup playoffs.
>> In other NHL news, the Phoenix Coytoes’ uncertain ownership situation appears to be reaching a critical phase according to comments made by NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and deputy commissioner Bill Daly Wednesday night in Chicago. “It’s possible that the team won’t play there next year,” Daly said. ESPN’s Scott Burnside has all the details.
>>Meanwhile, the Penguins have answered two major offseason questions in the days following their postseason elimination. Coach Dan Bylsma and his assistants all received a two-year contract extension that will keep them in Pittsburgh through 2015-16 and the Penguins announced Thursday they signed Evgeni Malkin to an eight-year, $76 million contract.