The AHL marathon
Ryan Potulny’s first goal of the playoffs, 2:58 into the fifth overtime, ended the longest game in American Hockey League history, lifting the Philadelphia Phantoms past the Albany River Rats, 3-2, at the Times Union Center.It takes an awful lot for the AHL playoffs to get a mention, anywhere, given when they take place, but this certainly qualifies.
Potulny scored on the Phantoms’ 101st shot of the game, beating Rats goaltender Michael Leighton with a 15-foot wrist shot from the slot and ending the game at 12:39 this morning after 142 minutes and 58 seconds. Leighton finished with an AHL-record 98 saves.
This game went from 7:01 p.m. until 12:39 a.m., nearly six hours, and I don't imagine many of the 1,809 in attendance at puck drop were still around.
The shots on goal were reasonable in regulation, Philadelphia 38, Albany 32, but the Phantoms peppered Leighton in the first and second overtimes with 37 shots.
I believe the modern NHL record is 70 saves, made by Ron Tugnutt, but that Kelly Hrudey holds the postseason record with 73.