‘Canes come back, capture Game 1
RALEIGH, N.C. ” After a stirring comeback, the Carolina Hurricanes won Game 1 of the Stanley Cup finals with a gift of a goal.
Rod Brind’Amour scored off a flukey mistake with 31.1 seconds remaining after Edmonton’s backup goalie botched an exchange behind the net, and the Hurricanes, after falling behind 3-0, rallied to beat the Oilers 5-4 Monday night.
Ty Conklin had to take over in goal for Edmonton with just under six minutes remaining after Dwayne Roloson, the star of the eighth-seeded Oilers improbable playoff run, was injured in a collision that knocked the net off its moorings. That proved to be the deciding factor.
With overtime looming, Conklin went behind the net to play the puck on a seemingly routine play. But he appeared to cross up teammate Jason Smith with a backhanded pass, the puck deflecting off Smith’s stick and sliding in front of an open net.
Brind’Amour scored his second goal of the night ” and he’ll never get an easier one. Smith dove in a futile attempt to knock the puck away and Conklin was still coming around from behind the net when it crossed the line.
Game 2 is Wednesday night in Raleigh. Then, the series shifts to Edmonton for the next two games.
With two small-market finalists and an obscure cable network televising the first two games, the Edmonton-Carolina matchup was expected to draw minuscule television ratings.
Maybe a few more people will flip over after the Oilers and Hurricanes put on a stirring display with all sorts of twists and turns.
Emonton’s Chris Pronger scored the first penalty shot goal in finals history, helping the Oilers build their three-goal lead. Carolina finally scored late in the second period, then strung together three rapid-fire goals in the third. Justin Williams put the Hurricanes ahead for the first time on a shorthanded breakaway goal with 9:58 remaining in regulation.
The Oilers weren’t done, either. After Carolina goalie Cam Ward made a brilliant stop on Shawn Horcoff, flinging his body back across the crease to somehow get an arm on the puck, Edmonton tied it up on a power-play goal by Ales Hemsky with 6:29 to go.
Support Local Journalism
Support Local Journalism
As a Summit Daily News reader, you make our work possible.
Your donation will be used exclusively to support quality, local journalism.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.
User Legend: Moderator Trusted User