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 hosting by Atlanta was rescheduled from 2005 when a lockout cancelled the entire 2004–05 NHL season.
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.
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.
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.
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.
- Presidents' Trophy: Detroit Red Wings
- Prince of Wales Trophy: Pittsburgh Penguins
- Clarence S. Campbell Bowl: Detroit Red Wings
- Art Ross Trophy: Alexander Ovechkin, Washington Capitals
- Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy: Jason Blake, Toronto Maple Leafs
- Calder Memorial Trophy: Patrick Kane, Chicago Blackhawks
- Conn Smythe Trophy: Henrik Zetterberg, Detroit Red Wings
- Frank J. Selke Trophy: Pavel Datsyuk, Detroit Red Wings
- Hart Memorial Trophy: Alexander Ovechkin, Washington Capitals
- Jack Adams Award: Bruce Boudreau, Washington Capitals
- James Norris Memorial Trophy: Nicklas Lidstrom, Detroit Red Wings
- King Clancy Memorial Trophy: Vincent Lecavalier, Tampa Bay Lightning
- Lady Byng Memorial Trophy: Pavel Datsyuk, Detroit Red Wings
- Lester B. Pearson Award: Alexander Ovechkin, Washington Capitals
- Maurice "Rocket" Richard Trophy: Alexander Ovechkin, Washington Capitals
- NHL Plus/Minus Award: Pavel Datsyuk, Detroit Red Wings
- Roger Crozier Saving Grace Award: Dan Ellis, Nashville Predators
- Vezina Trophy: Martin Brodeur, New Jersey Devils
- William M. Jennings Trophy: Dominik Hasek and Chris Osgood, Detroit Red Wings
- Lester Patrick Trophy: Brian Burke, Phil Housley, Ted Lindsay and Bob Naegele Jr.
- NHL Lifetime Achievement Award: Gordie Howe
NHL All Star TeamEdit
First All-Star Team
- Forwards: Alexander Ovechkin, Evgeni Malkin and Jarome Iginla
- Defencemen: Nicklas Lidstrom and Dion Phaneuf
- Goaltender: Evgeni Nabokov
Second All-Star Team
- Forwards: Henrik Zetterberg, Joe Thornton and Alexei Kovalev
- Defencemen: Brian Campbell and Zdeno Chara
- Goaltender: Martin Brodeur
- (GP = Games played; G = Goals; A = Assists; Pts = Points; +/– = Plus/Minus; PIM = Penalty Minutes)
|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|
- (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)
|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|
- 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
- Tobias Enstrom: Atlanta Thrashers
- Claude Giroux: Philadelphia Flyers
- Jonas Hiller: Anaheim Ducks
- Erik Johnson: St. Louis Blues
- Patrick Kane: Chicago Blackhawks
- Jonathan Quick: Los Angeles Kings
- Carey Price: Montreal Canadiens
- Tuukka Rask: Boston Bruins
- Bobby Ryan: Anaheim Ducks
- Marc Staal: New York Rangers
- Jonathan Toews: Chicago Blackhawks
- Nicklas Backstrom: Washington Capitals
- Darren Helm: Detroit Red Wings
Last Career GamesEdit
- Bryan Berard: New York Islanders
- Stu Barnes: Dallas Stars
- Dallas Drake: Detroit Red Wings
- Dominik Hasek: Detroit Red Wings
- Derian Hatcher: Philadelphia Flyers
- Sami Kapanen: Philadelphia Flyers
- Trevor Linden: Vancouver Canucks
- Mattias Norstrom: Dallas Stars
- Karel Rachunek: New Jersey Devils
- Glen Wesley: Carolina Hurricanes
- Josef Vasicek: New York Islanders
NHL Hat TricksEdit
Regular Season Hat TricksEdit
|Player||Team||Date||Score and Opponent|
|Paul Stastny||Colorado||October 3, 2007||4–3 vs. Dallas|
|David Legwand||Nashville||October 6, 2007||5–1 vs. Dallas|
|Fredrik Sjostrom||Phoenix||October 11, 2007||6–3 at Nashville|
|Phil Kessel||Boston||October 12, 2007||8–6 at Los Angeles|
|Joe Sakic||Colorado||October 13, 2007||5–1 vs. Columbus|
|Bill Guerin||N.Y. Islanders||October 18, 2007||5–2 at Washington|
|Rod Brind'Amour||Carolina||October 27, 2007||8–3 at N.Y. Islanders|
|Jay Pandolfo||New Jersey||October 31, 2007||6–1 vs. Tampa Bay|
|Ilya Kovalchuk||Atlanta||November 1, 2007||4–6 at Ottawa|
|Ilya Kovalchuk||Atlanta||November 2, 2007||6–4 at Tampa Bay|
|Cory Stillman||Carolina||November 5, 2007||5–0 vs. Washington|
|Peter Mueller||Phoenix||November 7, 2007||6–5 at Anaheim (OT)|
|Vincent Lecavalier||Tampa Bay||November 14, 2007||6–1 vs. Carolina|
|Jussi Jokinen (4 goals)||Dallas||November 16, 2007||6–1 vs. Colorado|
|Patrick Sharp (natural)||Chicago||November 17, 2007||5–3 at Detroit|
|Daniel Briere||Philadelphia||November 21, 2007||6–3 at Carolina|
|Markus Naslund||Vancouver||November 21, 2007||4–2 at Minnesota|
|Dustin Byfuglien||Chicago||November 30, 2007||6–1 vs. Phoenix|
|Zach Parise||New Jersey||November 30, 2007||4–0 vs. Montreal|
|Nik Antropov||Toronto||December 6, 2007||6–2 at N.Y. Rangers|
|Henrik Zetterberg||Detroit||December 7, 2007||5–0 vs. Minnesota|
|Milan Hejduk||Colorado||December 9, 2007||9–5 vs. St. Louis|
|Joffrey Lupul||Philadelphia||December 11, 2007||8–2 vs. Pittsburgh|
|R.J. Umberger||Philadelphia||December 11, 2007||8–2 vs. Pittsburgh|
|Kristian Huselius||Calgary||December 13, 2007||9–6 at Tampa Bay|
|Jarome Iginla||Calgary||December 13, 2007||9–6 at Tampa Bay|
|Joffrey Lupul||Philadelphia||December 15, 2007||5–6 vs. Carolina (SO)|
|Marian Gaborik (5 goals)||Minnesota||December 20, 2007||6–3 vs. N.Y. Rangers|
|Jason Arnott||Nashville||December 22, 2007||4–3 vs. Los Angeles|
|Mike Fisher||Ottawa||December 29, 2007||6–8 vs. Washington|
|Alexander Ovechkin (4 goals)||Washington||December 29, 2007||8–6 at Ottawa|
|Paul Kariya||St. Louis||December 29, 2007||4–5 at Dallas (SO)|
|Rick Nash||Columbus||December 31, 2007||4–2 vs. Edmonton|
|Ladislav Nagy||Los Angeles||January 1, 2008||9–2 vs. Chicago|
|Steve Reinprecht||Phoenix||January 2, 2008||5–2 at Colorado|
|Evgeni Malkin||Pittsburgh||January 3, 2008||6–2 vs. Toronto|
|Scott Hartnell||Philadelphia||January 10, 2008||6–2 at N.Y. Rangers|
|Evgeni Malkin||Pittsburgh||January 14, 2008||4–1 vs. N.Y. Rangers|
|Marian Hossa||Atlanta||January 15, 2008||5–1 at Detroit|
|Drew Stafford||Buffalo||January 18, 2008||10–1 vs. Atlanta|
|Derek Roy||Buffalo||January 18, 2008||10–1 vs. Atlanta|
|Eric Staal||Carolina||January 18, 2008||7–2 vs. Edmonton|
|Daymond Langkow||Calgary||January 18, 2008||6–1 vs. Los Angeles|
|Scott Hartnell||Philadelphia||January 19, 2008||5–3 at N.Y. Islanders|
|Daniel Alfredsson||Ottawa||January 24, 2008||8–4 at Tampa Bay|
|Radim Vrbata||Phoenix||January 24, 2008||4–3 vs. Nashville (OT)|
|Owen Nolan||Calgary||January 30, 2008||5–4 vs. San Jose|
|Alexander Ovechkin||Washington||January 31, 2008||5–4 vs. Montreal (OT)|
|Mike Knuble (natural)||Philadelphia||February 2, 2008||3–0 vs. Anaheim|
|Richard Zednik||Florida||February 5, 2008||8–0 at Toronto|
|Peter Mueller||Phoenix||February 5, 2008||3–4 at Calgary (SO)|
|Jason Spezza||Ottawa||February 9, 2008||6–1 vs. Montreal|
|Jonathan Cheechoo||San Jose||February 9, 2008||4–3 vs. Nashville|
|Thomas Vanek||Buffalo||February 12, 2008||5–1 at Ottawa|
|Thomas Vanek||Buffalo||February 20, 2008||4–3 vs. Tampa Bay (OT)|
|Alexander Frolov||Los Angeles||February 21, 2008||5–1 vs. St. Louis|
|Teemu Selanne||Anaheim||February 24, 2008||6–3 vs. Chicago|
|Niklas Hagman||Dallas||February 28, 2008||7–4 vs. Chicago|
|Tomas Plekanec||Montreal||February 29, 2008||6–2 at Buffalo|
|Alexander Ovechkin||Washington||March 3, 2008||10–2 vs. Boston|
|Martin Erat||Nashville||March 4, 2008||5–1 at Edmonton|
|Dany Heatley||Ottawa||March 11, 2008||4–1 vs. Boston|
|Vincent Lecavalier||Tampa Bay||March 11, 2008||8–4 vs. N.Y. Islanders|
|Ilya Kovalchuk||Atlanta||March 13, 2008||6–4 vs. Calgary|
|Joe Corvo||Carolina||March 16, 2008||5–1 vs. Ottawa|
|Henrik Zetterberg||Detroit||March 19, 2008||3–1 vs. Columbus|
|Thomas Vanek||Buffalo||March 19, 2008||7–4 vs. Tampa Bay|
|Jarome Iginla (natural)||Calgary||March 22, 2008||5–4 vs. Minnesota|
|Joe Thornton||San Jose||March 25, 2008||4–5 at Phoenix (OT)|
|Chad Larose||Carolina||April 2, 2008||6–2 vs. Tampa Bay|
|Antoine Vermette||Ottawa||April 3, 2008||8–2 at Toronto|
|Daniel Carcillo||Phoenix||April 4, 2008||4–2 at Dallas|
|Thomas Vanek (natural)||Buffalo||April 5, 2008||3–0 at Boston|
Playoff Hat TricksEdit
|Player||Team||Date||Score and Opponent|
|Johan Franzen||Detroit||April 26, 2008||5–1 vs. Colorado|
|Johan Franzen||Detroit||May 1, 2008||8–2 at Colorado|
|Pavel Datsyuk||Detroit||May 12, 2008||5–2 at Dallas|