In the sixth game of the 1999 finals, Xingchen and Sabre fought an epic battle. The two teams won only three extensions. However, the scene of “Foot in the crease” at the end of the game became a famous controversy in NHL history. one.
In professional sports events, “controversy” is an unavoidable part. In addition to off-field disputes, judgments on the field often become the focus of attention. The game caused an uproar.
On the fast-paced ice hockey rink, the number of controversial judgments is countless. The most well-known incident occurred on the most grand stage of the NHL: the Stanley Cup final. Moreover, that judgment directly affected the championship team that year.
Before restoring the scene that caused the controversy, the story must start with the two teams and the journey of several stars chasing the dream of champions.
The journey to the Stanley Cup
In the late 1990s, the Dallas Stars and the Buffalo Sabres were regulars in the playoffs, but at the time, the NHL had several other super powers, including the Detroit Red Wings, New Jersey Devils, and the Colorado Avalanche, all under the control of powerful enemies. , Xingchen and Sabre’s multiple playoff trips can only end with an early summer vacation.
Despite this, both Xingchen and Sabre were actually quite good at the time. Sabre also had Dominik Hasek, who was so powerful at the time. Starting from the 1993-94 season, Hasek had the highest goalkeeping rate in the league for 6 consecutive seasons. Won the Wizner Award (Best Goalkeeper Award) for 5 degrees, and was selected as the MVP Hart Award winner for 2 degrees. He became the only goalkeeper to have won two MVPs in history; Hasek’s changeable goal posture has even subverted the ball world for goalkeepers. Traditionally, Hasek is definitely the number one in the minds of many hockey fans when talking about the topic of “the strongest goalkeeper in history.”
Xingchen even has more famous players, with team history legend Mike Modano as the core, and through active operations to supplement center Joe Nieuwendyk, defender Sergei Zubov, goalkeeper Ed Belfour and other future Hall of Fame stars. Before the 1998-99 season, Xingchen signed free agent Brett Hull in order to strengthen his offensive depth.
Hull was once a frightening scoring machine: in the three seasons from 1989 to 1992, Hull scored 72, 86, and 70 goals respectively, and became the league’s leading goal scorer for three consecutive years, including 86 goals in a single season. , Is still the third highest record in league history. However, Hull’s unrestrained personality caused him to conflict with the coaching staff and the team several times, and was even labelled as a “team cancer”. After Hull became a free agent, the Blues rejected his non-tradable clause requirements, so Hull decided to transfer to the team to join the star. Although he was past his peak, he was still a very influential offensive asset. In the first year of the star Become the second scoring point on the team.
In the 1998-99 season, although the Sabres only ranked sixth in the Eastern Conference during the regular season, they were in excellent condition in the playoffs. They were the first to get tickets to the finals. Xingchen had his best regular season record for two consecutive years. Although he was eliminated in the Western Conference Championship, he successfully reversed the avalanche and reached the final for the first time since moving south to Dallas (Note).
As a result, Xingchen and Sabre faced off in the 1999 Stanley Cup final. Both teams were very eager to end the championship drought in team history. Xingchen and Sabre were founded in 1967 and 1970, respectively. Hasek and Hull , Modano, Belfour and others had not won the championship at the time, so they naturally had a very strong obsession with the championship.
After the finals began, Xingchen and Sabre played very exciting and tight content. In particular, the two teams were the teams with the lowest points lost in the regular season. During the finals, they fully demonstrated their defensive strength. Every game was a low score. The stalemate: 3 of the first 5 games are one-point difference, and the other 2 are only two-point difference.