Tuesday, April 22, 2008

The Ten Most Memorable Game Seven OT Goals

Welcome to the club, Joffrey Lupul.

With his goal tonight, Lupul became the 30th player in NHL history to score in overtime of a game seven. Time will tell how this one will be remembered, but in the meantime here my picks for the ten most memorable overtime game seven winnners in NJL history.

#10 - Dale Hunter
Capitals vs Flyers
1988 Patrick Division Semifinal

Playoff warrior Dale Hunter scores on a nifty breakaway move. Revenge would come 20 years later.

#9 - Andrew Brunette
Wild vs Avalanche
2003 Western Conference Semifinal

While the goal was memorable for Brunette and the Wild, it will probably be best remembered for ending the career of Patrick Roy.

#8 - Stephane Matteau
Rangers vs Devils
1994 Eastern Conference Final

The ugliest goal on the list by far, but certainly memorable. Fun fact: According to ESPN Classic, the 1994 post-season is the only one ever played in NHL history.

#7 - Pat Lafontaine
Islanders vs Capitals
1987 Patrick Division Semifinal

Definitely not the prettiest goal on the list, but one that ended what was at the time the fifth longest game in league history. Long OT games have become more common during the dead puck era, but in the 80's a quadruple overtime game was virtually inconcievable.

#6 - Nikolai Borchevsky
Maple Leafs vs Red Wings
1993 Norris Division Semifinal

This is probably the most memorable goal of the post expansion era for the Maple Leafs, whatever that tells you. The Leafs were emerging from Harold Ballard's reign of terror, but despite the additions of Doug Gilmour and Pat Burns weren't really taken seriously as a contender. (For more on the unintentional comedy goldmine that developed in the aftermath of this goal, read this post.)

#5 - David Volek
Islanders vs Penguins
1993 Patrick Division Finals

The Penguins had won back-to-back Cups and were coming off arguably their greatest season. To this day, I still can not believe this actually happened.

#4 - Pavel Bure
Canucks vs Flames
1994 Smythe Division Semifinal

Pavel Bure was the original Ovechkin. In 1994 the Canucks fought back from a 3-1 series deficit, winning three straight overtime games capped off by Bure's breakway goal and helicopter stick celebration in double OT.

#3 - Todd Marchant
Oilers vs Stars
1997 Western Conference Quarterfinal

A classic first round upset by the Oilers, largely thanks to Curtis Joseph's standout goaltending. His breathtaking overtime save set the table for Marchant to turn on the jets.

#2 - Yvon Lambert
Canadiens vs Bruins
1979 Wales Conference Final

This is the infamous "too many men" game (although that famous penalty lead to the tying goal, not the winner). With a weak Rangers team waiting in the finals, this game was essentially for the Stanley Cup. Guy Lafluer sent the game into overtime and Yvon Lambert won it, continiong the Habs dynasty, sending Don Cherry on the road to Coach's Corner, and making Bill Simmons' nose bleed.

For the life of me, I can't find a clip of this goal. If anyone has a link, please let me know and I'll update.

#1 - Steve Yzerman
Red Wings vs Blues
1996 Western Conference Semifinal

This one ended a 0-0 tie in double overtime. Quite possibly the greatest goal of Yzerman's career, set up by his neutral zone steal off of, of all people, Wayne Gretzky. While the long distance shot looks like a bit of a weak one at first, the replay shows it to be the perfect shot -- Yzerman practically turns the puck on its side to sneak it past Casey.


  1. beauty of a post. it never gets old watching those videos. and borschevsky's goal is one i will never, ever forget.

  2. after some contemplation, i think i gotta agree with PPP...nikky's goal should be higher!

  3. I know, I know... and nobody's given me grief yet for not including Lanny.

  4. supercool post. great idea. the reaction of the stunned Caps goalie (Mason?) is unforgettable. "if you slow it down and watch frame-by-frame, you can actually see the moment his heart rips in two".

  5. lanny was before my time, hence no grief from me. but i'm sure i'll be giving you grief sometime soon!

  6. Nikki B deserves a higher billing, but I can see the logic in the placement (I wouldn't be able to put my bias behind and). And I wasn't going to mention Lanny, but you know, since you brought it up.

    That Stevey Y goal deserves top billing for reals. What a shot.

  7. but i'm sure i'll be giving you grief sometime soon!

    I'm surprised you haven't found a way to bash me for not having Sundin on the list.