Devils defeat haunts Redden

CHRIS STEVENSON, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 6:03 PM ET

HARTFORD, Conn. — Wade Redden’s best hockey was with the Ottawa Senators.

He helped the Sens become one of the top clubs in the NHL, though a Stanley Cup eluded them.

They came close, losing to the Anaheim Ducks in the 2007 Stanley Cup final, but that was not the defeat that has stuck with Redden from his Ottawa days.

That would be losing Game 7 of the Eastern Conference final to the New Jersey Devils in 2003.

The Senators had rallied from down 3-1 in the series, riding an emotional speech from assistant coach Roger Neilson — who was dying of cancer — to a victory in Game 5, and then getting an overtime winner from Chris Phillips to force Game 7 back in Ottawa.

Redden saw a pass by Devils winger Grant Marshall deflect off defence partner Karel Rachunek’s stick and between his skates to a wide-open Jeff Friesen for the winner, breaking a 2-2 tie with two minutes to go in regulation time.

“It was more disappointing losing that way than to the Ducks in the final.

That was a five-game series and we just kind of ran out of gas,” Redden said. “Against New Jersey, we were down 3-1, won Game 5, won Game 6 in overtime. We were like: ‘Okay, this is it. We’re going to win this. Let’s just go out and do it.’ That was a tough loss in Game 7.”


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