I know, Kirk McLean isn't a true playoff legend. He never won a Stanley Cup, but he won my admiration in 1994. Mind you, that wasn't hard to do as I was a life long Canucks fan and he still ranks as my personal favorite goalie. Besides, us Canucks fans need something to feel good about after blowing a 3-1 series lead against Dallas this week.
He was unbelievable that spring, especially in game one of the finals in New York City. I've rarely seen a goaltending performance rival that overtime classic! McLean, in his classic stand-up style, committed one of the grandest larcenies in the history of Manhattan. His 52 save performance, including 17 in overtime, remains one of the most impressive games I've ever seen a goaltender play. In a game where the Rangers could have blown out the Canucks, McLean kept the score 2-2 into overtime. Greg Adams, McLean's trade accompaniant from New Jersey 7 years prior, scored the game winning goal at 19:26 of the first over time.
I found this great highlight package of that classic game on YouTube:
I remember being stunned by the fact that players would routinely shoot from behind the blueline in games from the 60s and 70s that I saw last summer. Imagine my shock when I saw them still doing it in '94. Does anyone even bother anymore? Has anyone other than Nicklas Lidstrom succeeded from way out there in the last 12 years or so?
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