Welcome to the second Round Robin matchup of “Round 1.”
To see 1994-95 vs. 1999-00 RR series, click here.
Now, the 2011-12 Stanley Cup Losers will face the 2002-03 Stanley Cup Winners.
The two venues that will be used will be the Prudential Center and Continental Airlines Arena.
Game one at Continental Airlines Arena didn’t see too much action until the second period. John Madden scored for 2003 only for his goal to be negated by an Alexi Ponikarovsky goal to tie the game at one. Patrik Elias struck back with a goal that lifted 2002-03 2-1 going into the second intermission. Kovalchuk recorded the first penalty of the series with a holding minor.
2002-03 took a 1-0 series lead with a 2-1 victory.
Game 2 also didn’t see any notable action in the first. 3:54 into the second, Parise was caught with a cross checking minor. 43 seconds later, Volchenkov was tagged with a 4 minute double-minor for high sticking. Despite 2003 being unable to convert, 13 seconds after Volchenkov’s penalty expired, Scott Niedermayer scored the first goal of the game to take the lead 1-0.
With 2012 feeling a sense of urgency, Petr Sykora tied the game up 1-1 at 1:12 in the third. Things remained hectic throughout the third, in a 2012 Eastern Conference Final-esque goal, Adam Henrique pushed 2012 to victory with a goal at 19:34 of the third period.
With their 2-1 comeback win, 2011-12 tied up the series 1-1.
Aside from a Petr Sykora high sticking penalty, nothing happened in the first until 17:34 into the game. Brian Gionta scored to give 2003 their third straight game of scoring the first goal.
At 1:34 of the second, Elias was tagged with boarding to put 2003 on the PP. Adam Henrique ended up breaking through the defenses as he was tasked with the important job of a shorthanded penalty shot. He ended up converting it to tie the game at 1.
At 3:57 of the third, 2003 was back on the PP thanks to Bryce Salvador interfering with the Marty in Red. Unfortunately for them, they were unable to convert. Now the game moved into OT.
At 6:07, Ilya Kovalchuk ended up breaking the tie and winning the game for 2012 2-1. Clarkson and Greene assisted the goal.
2011-12 pushed the series lead up to 2-1 after the OT win.
The rough play from 2012 was far from over as Parise (slashing) and Volchenkov (unsportsmanlike conduct) were tagged with penalties at separate times. Volchenkov’s penalty stung even more once Niedermayer cashed in with a PP goal. This now marked the fourth game in a row that 2003 scored first. The rough play didn’t stop though as Ryan Carter was also hit with a boarding minor.
With the second period not even 2 minutes in, Henrique scored to make the game 1-1. 2003 then felt the taste of being on a PK this game after Turner Stevenson got called for a roughing minor.
7:54 into the third, Colin White went to the cin bin after an elbowing penalty but 2012 couldn’t cash in.
OT was extremely competitive and the drama increased 10 fold when Ryan Carter returned to the penalty box for the second time. 2003 once again did not cash in on the opportunity. The horn blew and now it was time for the second OT.
At 12:49 into the second overtime, Bryce Salvador was caught clipping an opponent and 2003 was on the PP again. They once again did not convert on the opportunity. 21 seconds after the penalty expired, Volchenkov pushed the puck to Carter who then gave it to Elias and Elias converted on the opportunity to give 2012 the 2-1 win.
2011-12 pushed the series lead to 3-1 after a 2-1, 2OT game.
As if people weren’t expecting it, 2003 opened the scoring for the 5th straight game with a Patrik Elias goal. Shortly thereafter, Turner Stevenson was tagged with a cross checking penalty.
Ironically, 2012 extended their streak of 5 straight games scoring the 2nd goal with a Kovalchuk goal shortly into the period. About 8 minutes later, Kovalchuk scored once again to give 2012 the lead 2-1. After a Parise goal pushed the lead to 3-1, Volchenkov (spearing [oddly enough]) and Salvador (roughing) were hit with penalties at separate times. 32 seconds after the penalty was issued, Henrique scored another shorthanded goal for 2012 to give them a 4-1 lead.
2003 desperately tried to salvage the series with a John Madden goal very quickly out of the gate in the third period. Unfortunately, it didn’t help much as Elias scored to push the lead to 5-2. Brodeur was then replaced by Corey Schwab in net. Aside from a Langenbrunner high sticking, the game, and series for that matter, was over.
2011-12 won the series 4-1 with a dominant 5-2 Game 5 win.
2003 always grabbed the lead but 2012 always answered back. After that, 2003 had a hard time converting on PP and even had a hard time preventing Henrique from scoring a shorthanded goal (he had 2, 1 a penalty shot).