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The 2007–08 NHL season was the 91st season of operation (90th season of play) of the National Hockey League (NHL).

The season began on September 29, 2007 and the regular season ended on April 6, 2008.

The Stanley Cup playoffs ended on June 4, 2008 with the Detroit Red Wings taking the championship.

The 56th NHL All-Star Game was held in Atlanta, Georgia as the Atlanta Thrashers hosted the event at Philips Arena on January 27, 2008.

The hosting by Atlanta was rescheduled from 2005 when a lockout cancelled the entire 2004–05 NHL season.

League BusinessEdit

National Hockey League announced that the regular season salary cap would be going up for the third consecutive season.

The 2007–08 salary cap is being increased by $6,300,000 (US) per team to bring the salary cap up to $50,300,000 (US).

The salary floor is at $34,300,000 (US), which is 71.5% higher than the salary floor on 2005–06 season.

The season featured the debut of Reebok's new Rbk Edge hockey jerseys. This was the first league-wide uniform innovation in the history of any major North American professional sports league.

Seven teams (Boston, Tampa Bay, Vancouver, Washington, Ottawa, San Jose and Columbus) unveiled new logos prior to the season's beginning.

On March 1, 2007, the NHL announced the regular season would open on September 29, 2007, with the first of back-to-back games in London at The O2. They were the first NHL regular season games ever played in Europe.

Both games featured the defending Stanley Cup Champion Anaheim Ducks and the Los Angeles Kings (who are owned by Anschutz Entertainment Group, the same company that owns The O2).

The official average attendance per game was 17,625 per game. However, if the two games played at the O2 Arena are counted, the number is 17,309 per game.

On September 17, 2007, the NHL announced the first outdoor game in over four years would be played between the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Buffalo Sabres at Buffalo's Ralph Wilson Stadium (home of the Buffalo Bills football team) on January 1, 2008.

The event (known as the AMP Energy NHL Winter Classic) was the first time an NHL regular-season game had been played outdoors in the United States, and it set an NHL attendance record of 71,217 people.

The only previous outdoor NHL game was the 2003 Heritage Classic played between the Montreal Canadiens and Edmonton Oilers at Commonwealth Stadium on November 22, 2003.

During board of governors meetings held on September 18, 2007 in Chicago, cities including Las Vegas, Kansas City, Houston, Milwaukee, Quebec City, Seattle and Winnipeg were discussed as possible expansion destinations.

The NHL also discussed the current "unbalanced" schedule and voted on a new schedule format at a board meeting in November so that all teams will play each other at least once and reduce intradivisional play in the 2008–09 season in essence returning to the scheduling structure that existed in 2003–04 and would have existed in 2004–05.

The sale of the Lightning and Predators teams were not completed for board approval.

Rule ChangesEdit

A number of minor rule changes were introduced for the start of the 2007–08 season. Penalty shots can now be awarded when a player with the puck is hauled down from the centre line on in rather than from the opposition's blue-line as previously was the case.

Also, the interference rule was altered to allow for a major penalty and a game misconduct when an injury results. Another change affected faceoff placement: All faceoffs must be conducted at one of the nine dots painted on the rink.

Regular NHL SeasonEdit

The New Jersey Devils began playing in their new arena, the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey, however, since the arena was not ready by the beginning of the season, they began their season with a nine-game road trip.

Inter-conference division play had the Northeast visit the Pacific, the Pacific visit the Atlantic, the Atlantic visit the Northwest, the Northwest visit the Southeast, the Southeast visit the Central and the Central visit the Northeast.

Mike Cammalleri of the Los Angeles Kings scored the first goal of the season against the Anaheim Ducks on September 29th in the opening game played in London, England.

Richard Zednik of the Florida Panthers was severely injured after having his external carotid artery in his neck accidentally cut by the skate of teammate Olli Jokinen in a game against the Buffalo Sabres on February 10th. Zednik fully recovered from the injury, but he missed the remainder of the season.

The Anaheim Ducks and Ottawa Senators matched up for the first time since the 2007 Stanley Cup Finals on March 3, 2008 at Anaheim.

The Washington Capitals improved from 14th place in the previous season and last in the Eastern Conference during the first third of the 2007–08 season to finish as the third seed in the 2007–08 playoffs and winners of the Southeast Division.

The turnaround was attributed mainly to the hiring of then-American Hockey League coach Bruce Boudreau, whose efforts won him the Jack Adams Award for the 2007–08 season.

The San Jose Sharks went the entire month of March without a regulation loss and were the media's favorite to win the Cup going into the playoffs.

The Detroit Red Wings won the Presidents' Trophy for finishing the regular season with the most points (115).

Fewer goals were scored in the regular season than in the 2006–07 season, with an average of 5.44 goals scored per game (6,691 goals over 1,230 games). Goaltenders combined for 161 shutouts.

Tiebreaking ProcedureEdit

Where two or more clubs are tied in points at the end of the regular season, the standing of the clubs is determined in the following order:

  • The greater number of games won.
  • The greater number of points earned in games between the tied clubs.
  • The greater differential between goals for and against.

NHL PlayoffsEdit

In each round, the highest remaining seed in each conference is matched against the lowest remaining seed.

The higher-seeded team is awarded home ice advantage. In the Stanley Cup Finals, home ice is determined based on regular season points. Thus, the Detroit Red Wings had home ice advantage.

Each best-of-seven series follows a 2–2–1–1–1 format: the higher-seeded team will play at home for have games 1 and 2 (plus 5 and 7 if necessary) and the lower-seeded team will be at home for the other games.

NHL AwardsEdit

NHL All Star TeamEdit

First All-Star Team

Second All-Star Team

Player StatisticsEdit

Scoring Leaders

  • (GP = Games played; G = Goals; A = Assists; Pts = Points; +/– = Plus/Minus; PIM = Penalty Minutes)
Player Team GP G A Pts +/– PIM
Alexander Ovechkin Washington Capitals 82 65 47 112 +28 40
Evgeni Malkin Pittsburgh Penguins 82 47 59 106 +16 78
Jarome Iginla Calgary Flames 82 50 48 98 +27 83
Pavel Datsyuk Detroit Red Wings 82 31 66 97 +41 20
Joe Thornton San Jose Sharks 82 29 67 96 +18 59
Henrik Zetterberg Detroit Red Wings 75 43 49 92 +30 34
Vincent Lecavalier Tampa Bay Lightning 81 40 52 92 -17 89
Jason Spezza Ottawa Senators 76 34 58 92 +26 66
Daniel Alfredsson Ottawa Senators 70 40 49 89 +15 34
Ilya Kovalchuk Atlanta Thrashers 79 52 35 87 -12 52

Leading Goaltenders

  • (GP = Games Played; TOI = Time On Ice (minutes); W = Wins; L = Losses; OT = Overtime/Shootout Losses; GA = Goals Against; SO = Shutouts; Sv% = Save Percentage; GAA = Goals Against Average)
Player Team GP TOI W L OT GA SO Sv% GAA
Chris Osgood Detroit Red Wings 43 2,409 27 9 4 84 4 .914 2.09
Dominik Hasek Detroit Red Wings 41 2,350 27 10 3 84 5 .902 2.14
Jean-Sebastien Giguere Anaheim Ducks 58 3,310 35 17 6 117 4 .922 2.12
Martin Brodeur New Jersey Devils 77 4,635 44 27 6 168 4 .920 2.17
Evgeni Nabokov San Jose Sharks 77 4,560 46 21 8 163 6 .910 2.14

NHL MilestonesEdit

  • On October 3, in his first game with Montreal, Roman Hamrlik played in his 1,000th NHL game.
  • On October 7, Joe Sakic reached 1,591 points, moving him past Phil Esposito for eighth all-time in scoring.
  • On October 8, Chris Chelios played in his 1,550th game, moving him past Alex Delvecchio for eighth place on the career list.
  • On October 12, Jaromir Jagr scored his 1,533rd career point, passing Paul Coffey for 11th in all-time scoring.
  • On October 22, Bryan Smolinski played in his 1,000th NHL game.
  • On October 26, Alexei Kovalev played in his 1,000th NHL game, the third Montreal player to reach this milestone in October.
  • On November 3, Al Arbour coached his 1,500th game with the New York Islanders and earned his 740th win with the team. Both are NHL records for coaching a single team. At 75 years old, he was the oldest man to coach in an NHL game.
  • On November 10, Jeremy Roenick scored his 500th career NHL goal, becoming only the 40th player in the history of the league to do so, and only the third American.
  • On November 17, Martin Brodeur recorded his 500th career win, becoming only the second goaltender in the history of the league to do so.
  • On November 17, Glen Wesley played in his 1,400th NHL game, becoming the 10th defenseman to do so.
  • On December 20, Marian Gaborik scored five goals for the Minnesota Wild in a 6–3 win against the New York Rangers. It is the first time a player has scored five goals in a game since Sergei Fedorov did so on December 26, 1996.
  • On December 23, New York Rangers captain Jaromir Jagr recorded his 927th assist, passing Stan Mikita for 15th place on the all-time list.
  • On January 17, Markus Naslund played in his 1000th NHL game.
  • On February 9, San Jose Sharks coach Ron Wilson earned his 500th career win as an NHL head coach, becoming the 11th in league history to do so.
  • On March 13, the Detroit Red Wings reached the 100-point mark for the eighth straight season, tying an NHL record set by the Montreal Canadiens from 1975–1982.
  • On March 22, Joe Sakic recorded his 1000th assist on a goal by teammate Tyler Arnason, becoming just the 11th player to reach this mark.
  • On April 6, Keith Tkachuk scored his 500th career goal, becoming the fourth American-born player to do so.
  • On April 9, Joe Sakic extended his record for playoff overtime goals to eight.
  • On April 12, Chris Chelios played his 248th career playoff game, moving past Patrick Roy for most career playoff games played.

First Career GamesEdit

Last Career GamesEdit

NHL Hat TricksEdit

Regular Season Hat TricksEdit

Player Team Date Score and Opponent
Paul StastnyColoradoOctober 3, 20074–3 vs. Dallas
David LegwandNashvilleOctober 6, 20075–1 vs. Dallas
Fredrik SjostromPhoenixOctober 11, 20076–3 at Nashville
Phil KesselBostonOctober 12, 20078–6 at Los Angeles
Joe SakicColoradoOctober 13, 20075–1 vs. Columbus
Bill GuerinN.Y. IslandersOctober 18, 20075–2 at Washington
Rod Brind'AmourCarolinaOctober 27, 20078–3 at N.Y. Islanders
Jay PandolfoNew JerseyOctober 31, 20076–1 vs. Tampa Bay
Ilya KovalchukAtlantaNovember 1, 20074–6 at Ottawa
Ilya KovalchukAtlantaNovember 2, 20076–4 at Tampa Bay
Cory StillmanCarolinaNovember 5, 20075–0 vs. Washington
Peter MuellerPhoenixNovember 7, 20076–5 at Anaheim (OT)
Vincent LecavalierTampa BayNovember 14, 20076–1 vs. Carolina
Jussi Jokinen (4 goals)DallasNovember 16, 20076–1 vs. Colorado
Patrick Sharp (natural)ChicagoNovember 17, 20075–3 at Detroit
Daniel BrierePhiladelphiaNovember 21, 20076–3 at Carolina
Markus NaslundVancouverNovember 21, 20074–2 at Minnesota
Dustin ByfuglienChicagoNovember 30, 20076–1 vs. Phoenix
Zach PariseNew JerseyNovember 30, 20074–0 vs. Montreal
Nik AntropovTorontoDecember 6, 20076–2 at N.Y. Rangers
Henrik ZetterbergDetroitDecember 7, 20075–0 vs. Minnesota
Milan HejdukColoradoDecember 9, 20079–5 vs. St. Louis
Joffrey LupulPhiladelphiaDecember 11, 20078–2 vs. Pittsburgh
R.J. UmbergerPhiladelphiaDecember 11, 20078–2 vs. Pittsburgh
Kristian HuseliusCalgaryDecember 13, 20079–6 at Tampa Bay
Jarome IginlaCalgaryDecember 13, 20079–6 at Tampa Bay
Joffrey LupulPhiladelphiaDecember 15, 20075–6 vs. Carolina (SO)
Marian Gaborik (5 goals)MinnesotaDecember 20, 20076–3 vs. N.Y. Rangers
Jason ArnottNashvilleDecember 22, 20074–3 vs. Los Angeles
Mike FisherOttawaDecember 29, 20076–8 vs. Washington
Alexander Ovechkin (4 goals)WashingtonDecember 29, 20078–6 at Ottawa
Paul KariyaSt. LouisDecember 29, 20074–5 at Dallas (SO)
Rick NashColumbusDecember 31, 20074–2 vs. Edmonton
Ladislav NagyLos AngelesJanuary 1, 20089–2 vs. Chicago
Steve ReinprechtPhoenixJanuary 2, 20085–2 at Colorado
Evgeni MalkinPittsburghJanuary 3, 20086–2 vs. Toronto
Scott HartnellPhiladelphiaJanuary 10, 20086–2 at N.Y. Rangers
Evgeni MalkinPittsburghJanuary 14, 20084–1 vs. N.Y. Rangers
Marian HossaAtlantaJanuary 15, 20085–1 at Detroit
Drew StaffordBuffaloJanuary 18, 200810–1 vs. Atlanta
Derek RoyBuffaloJanuary 18, 200810–1 vs. Atlanta
Eric StaalCarolinaJanuary 18, 20087–2 vs. Edmonton
Daymond LangkowCalgaryJanuary 18, 20086–1 vs. Los Angeles
Scott HartnellPhiladelphiaJanuary 19, 20085–3 at N.Y. Islanders
Daniel AlfredssonOttawaJanuary 24, 20088–4 at Tampa Bay
Radim VrbataPhoenixJanuary 24, 20084–3 vs. Nashville (OT)
Owen NolanCalgaryJanuary 30, 20085–4 vs. San Jose
Alexander OvechkinWashingtonJanuary 31, 20085–4 vs. Montreal (OT)
Mike Knuble (natural)PhiladelphiaFebruary 2, 20083–0 vs. Anaheim
Richard ZednikFloridaFebruary 5, 20088–0 at Toronto
Peter MuellerPhoenixFebruary 5, 20083–4 at Calgary (SO)
Jason SpezzaOttawaFebruary 9, 20086–1 vs. Montreal
Jonathan CheechooSan JoseFebruary 9, 20084–3 vs. Nashville
Thomas VanekBuffaloFebruary 12, 20085–1 at Ottawa
Thomas VanekBuffaloFebruary 20, 20084–3 vs. Tampa Bay (OT)
Alexander FrolovLos AngelesFebruary 21, 20085–1 vs. St. Louis
Teemu SelanneAnaheimFebruary 24, 20086–3 vs. Chicago
Niklas HagmanDallasFebruary 28, 20087–4 vs. Chicago
Tomas PlekanecMontrealFebruary 29, 20086–2 at Buffalo
Alexander OvechkinWashingtonMarch 3, 200810–2 vs. Boston
Martin EratNashvilleMarch 4, 20085–1 at Edmonton
Dany HeatleyOttawaMarch 11, 20084–1 vs. Boston
Vincent LecavalierTampa BayMarch 11, 20088–4 vs. N.Y. Islanders
Ilya KovalchukAtlantaMarch 13, 20086–4 vs. Calgary
Joe CorvoCarolinaMarch 16, 20085–1 vs. Ottawa
Henrik ZetterbergDetroitMarch 19, 20083–1 vs. Columbus
Thomas VanekBuffaloMarch 19, 20087–4 vs. Tampa Bay
Jarome Iginla (natural)CalgaryMarch 22, 20085–4 vs. Minnesota
Joe ThorntonSan JoseMarch 25, 20084–5 at Phoenix (OT)
Chad LaroseCarolinaApril 2, 20086–2 vs. Tampa Bay
Antoine VermetteOttawaApril 3, 20088–2 at Toronto
Daniel CarcilloPhoenixApril 4, 20084–2 at Dallas
Thomas Vanek (natural)BuffaloApril 5, 20083–0 at Boston

Playoff Hat TricksEdit

Player Team Date Score and Opponent
Johan FranzenDetroitApril 26, 20085–1 vs. Colorado
Johan FranzenDetroitMay 1, 20088–2 at Colorado
Pavel DatsyukDetroitMay 12, 20085–2 at Dallas

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