Has the Columbus-Tampa Bay NHL playoff game that started on Tuesday ended yet?

While watching the Lightning 3-2 victory over the Blue Jackets in five overtimes I (and I’m sure many others in Prince George) had flashbacks to the RBC semi-finals in 2007 when the PG Spruce Kings outlasted the Camrose Kodiaks, also by a 3-2 score.

When Tampa’s Brayden Point scored 10:27 into the fifth overtime, it ended the fourth-longest game in Stanley Cup playoff history.

Losing goalie Joonas Korpisalo made an NHL-record 85 saves.

Vezina Trophy finalist Andrei Vasilevskiy made 61 stops for Tampa as the two teams combined for 151 shots — most in an NHL game since the league began tracking the statistic in 1955-56.

The Tampa-Columbus game was a total of 150 minutes and 27 seconds of hockey, four minutes and 26 seconds longer than the Spruce Kings marathon against the Kodiaks.

The PG-Camrose game had a combined 170 shots or 19 more than the Lightning and Blue Jackets.

Let’s go down memory lane (from 13 years ago) for that “special” game at CN Centre, the longest I have ever experienced in person.

The game in Prince George began Saturday night and ended early Sunday morning, nearly six hours after the puck dropped.

Jason Yuel, redirecting a pass from Tyler Helfrich, scored at 6:01 of the 5th overtime (at 1:01 a.m. PT) to give the Spruce Kings arguably the biggest goal in team history.

That’s right, a breathtaking 146 minutes and one second of hockey.

Later that same day, a weary Prince George team, went on to lose the RBC final 3-1 to the Aurora (Ontario) Tigers.

One realizes there’s always a chance of overtime in playoff hockey, and perhaps a lengthy OT, but I and the pro Prince George crowd of 3,849 had no idea what was in store when we arrived to watch the RBC second semi-final on May 12th, 2007.

Since it was Saturday night that turned into Sunday morning, I was surprised that a few hundred fans did not stay for the duration, although I would suggest that over 3,000 fans were left in the building when Yuel tallied the winning goal.

The goaltending that night/morning will always be a highlight.

Jordan White, who played 38 career WHL games, including 10 with the PG Cougars, had 90 saves for the host Spruce Kings, who were outshot by the Kodiaks 93-77. Camrose goalie Allen York settled for a paltry 75 saves.

Camrose forced overtime on a goal with just 1:51 left in the 3rd and White made arguably the save of the tournament with his glove off a Mike Connolly breakaway at the midway point of the first overtime.

White, born March 12, 1988, went on to play university hockey for UBC and made headlines for signing a one-day amateur contract as an emergency backup goalie with the San Jose Sharks on January 20, 2011.

So, how does the length of the game in Prince George compare to other multi overtimes?

The Canadian Hockey League (CHL) record is 151 minutes and 36 seconds or 5 minutes and 35 seconds longer than the Spruce Kings and Kodiaks.

Former PG Cougar Cal Babych scored on a breakaway at 11:36 of the fifth overtime period to give the Everett Silvertips a draining 3-2 victory over the Victoria Royals on April 2nd, 2017 in the provincial capital.

The top-seeded Silvertips won the series over the eighth-seeded Royals 4-2.

It was the first game in WHL history to go to five overtimes.

The American Hockey League (AHL), in its 84-year history, has never had a game take as much time, although the league had a five-overtime game in 2008 (Philadelphia Phantoms 3-2 over the Albany River Rats) that was three minutes and three seconds shorter.

The KHL in Russia has also never had a game that lengthy although there was one that needed the 5th overtime.

The NHL, 103 years old (founded November 26, 1917) has only had four longer games than the PG-Camrose thriller, including the Tampa-Columbus nail-biter this week.

The Detroit Red Wings beat the Montreal Maroons 1-0 on March 24, 1936, in the 6th overtime (total of 176:30).

The Toronto Maple Leafs edged the Boston Bruins on April 3, 1933, also in the 6th overtime (total of 164:46).

The Philadelphia Flyers doubled the Pittsburgh Penguins 2-1 on May 4, 2000, as Keith Primeau scored the winner in the 5th overtime period (total of 152:01).

That Flyers-Penguins second-round series game was just six minutes longer than the Spruce Kings-Kodiaks game.

After doing post-game interviews, I took the short walk home leaving CN Centre at 1:30 a.m. I had never been on the streets of Prince George that late and haven’t been since.

Yet, I wasn’t concerned about safety because my mind was pre-occupied with a mind-boggling game, one that likely will never be topped in PG.


FROM THE QUOTE RACK

They saw the signs coming.

*Tim Hunter of KRKO Radio in Everett, on why fewer Houston Astros have tested positive for COVID-19.

Was watching the L.A. Dodgers game and I was surprised when the cardboard cut-out of fans left in the seventh inning to beat traffic.

*Comedy writer Alex Kaseberg

Owner Jerry Jones says Dallas Cowboys intend to play all their home games with fans in attendance. The new slogan “People are dying to watch the Cowboys.”

*Comedy writer Janice Hough of Palo Alto, California www.leftcoastsportsbabe.com

With a COVID-19 work stoppage possible in sports, could we be looking at this season’s NBA champs as the 2019-20-21 Lakers?

*Contributor Bill Littlejohn of South Lake Tahoe, California

So the Big Ten and Pac-12 conferences are shutting down, but I think the C-19 is going to have a big fall campaign.

*Contributor Marc Ragovin of New York

Dodgers outfielder Mookie Betts was listed as day to day with a swollen middle finger. “We feel your pain,” said fans in Philadelphia.

*Dwight Perry of the Seattle Times http://www.seattletimes.com/author/dwight-perry/

IN CASE, YOU MISSED IT:

According to Reuters, over 1,000 people worldwide have Kleine Levin Syndrome —  sleeping for weeks or months at a time. In Canada, we call it Edmonton Oilers Disorder.

*Canadian comedy writer RJ Currie www.Sportsdeke.com

Hartley Miller is the news and sports supervisor and morning news anchor for 94.3 the GOAT and Country 97.
He also is the 94.3 the Goat radio colour commentator for P.G. Cougars home games.
His column appears Fridays on myprincegeorgenow.com.
Send along a quote, note, or anecdote to hmiller@thegoatrocks.ca