Norway played the longest official game in hockey history. What meetings can compare to it?
- “Storhamar” – “Sparta” – 217 minutes and 14 seconds
It happened just the other day, in the Norwegian playoffs, when Storkhamar and Sparta from Sarpsborg took to the ice in the fifth match of the series. The tenacity and intensity of the fight matched the best of the Nordic character, resulting in a new historical record of 8 overtimes and almost 220 minutes of playing time. Storhamar won the final game 2-1, and the puck-saving goal was scored by forward Joakim Jensen, who shouldered the gratitude of the audience, the referees, and, probably, even the opponents.
- March 24, 1936. “Detroit vs. Montreal Maroons – 176 minutes and 30 seconds
Back in the 1935/36 season, the Red Wings won the American Division by beating Chicago in the last game of the regular season. Detroit goalie Norm Smith suffered a knee injury in that game, but four days later the playoffs began and he had to take on the challenge again – his first-round opponent was the formidable Montreal Maroons, who were the reigning Stanley Cup winners.
“I was just exhausted. After the game, I drank a bottle of ginger beer, which just knocked me down,” recalled Norm Smith, who reflected 90 shots. Smith’s fatigue may have been evident for another curious reason: since there were no ice-filling machines back then, the playing surface was actively poured with alcohol for better preservation, and both goaltenders had to repel pucks in an atmosphere of alcoholic fumes and splashes. The heroism shown by the Red Wings in that never-ending game was not in vain: Detroit won the series 3-0 and defeated Toronto in the final to win the Stanley Cup for the first time in its history.
- March 7, 2015. “Gomel – “Yunost” – 165 minutes and 11 seconds
In the opening match of the Belarusian Extraliga semifinal series between Gomel and Yunost, it took 6 overtimes to determine the winner. The main time ended with a score of 1-1, and what happened next was a new European hockey record. The author of the winning puck was “Yunost” forward Vitaliy Kiryushchenko, and one of the main heroes was the guest goalkeeper Alexander Borodulya, who made 107 saves.
“All the hockey players came out in a serious condition. Before the last overtime I told the guys: who can’t, let him stay in the locker room. I won’t reproach anyone for that,” Minsk coach Mikhail Zakharov said after the game. Yunost won the series with a score of 4-0, but lost the final game to Shakhtar from Soligorsk.