As the final seconds of the Devils' 3-1 win in Montreal ticked away, left wing Patrik Elias had the puck on his stick and knew Martin Brodeur would want it as a keepsake after tying Patrick Roy for the most wins in NHL history.
When Elias went to flip Brodeur the puck after the final siren, however, he almost flipped it too high and Brodeur had to reach up to catch it in his glove.
"It almost got over him, but he got it," Elias said.
As I mentioned earlier Elias said that he didn't mind that his record-tying night was overshadowed by Brodeur's. Brian Rolston had a similar reaction to his 300th NHL goal being forgotten.
"I said, 'What's Marty's deal again tonight?" Rolston joked afterward. "No, really it's definitely a milestone and when it happens it's exciting. Once your career is over, you look back at milestones and I'm obviously very excited to get the goal."
Rolston was pleased that it turned out to be the game-winner in Brodeur's historic win.
"To be a game-winning goal makes it special," Rolston said."I won't forget this one being in Montreal and doing it on Marty's night."
Devils coach Brent Sutter was understandably happy with the way his team played. The Devils outshot the Canadiens, 48-23, and, other than a few spurts in the second period, controlled the game throughout.
Still, Sutter thought Brodeur had to earn the win.
"He made some big saves," Sutter said. "We never gave up a lot and we never gave up a lot of scoring chances, but the ones that were there, Marty made some big saves for us. The goal he gave up was a deflection off a stick (of Dainius Zubrus). But it was a great team effort, obviously."
Sutter said he told Brodeur after the game that he was proud of him and admitted he got a chill when the game ended.
"Sure, it's exciting, he said. "You could see the excitment in the guys and obviously you could see the excitement in Marty. To tie it up here, it couldn't have happened in a better place. It's his hometown and he gets a standing ovation at the end of the game and a standing ovation when he was named the first star. It's unbelievable of how it's unfolded until now. Yet, that tells you something. It tells you something about Marty and it tells you something about the history of the game, too and how special it really is."
Brodeur's teammates also enjoyed the ovation he received.
"That was pretty amazing," said Devils captain Jamie Langenbrunner, who tied his single-season career high with his 23rd goal tonight. "Zach (Parise) and I were skating off the ice and we said to each other, 'We got chills.' It was a great atmosphere and what great fans here to salute him like that. That made it really special."
After the game ended, the players lined up, forming a kind of aisle to skate through as he left the ice. They said that was unplanned.
"We just improvised the whole thing," center John Madden said. "It was a great feeling to be out there and I know Marty was sure happy and I saw his dad sitting down by the glass there and he had a big smile. It's a great accomplishment for Marty and he definitely deserves it."
Sutter got a chuckle after the game because initially only four reporters that went to talk to him after the game. Everyone else was trying to get to Brodeur, who actually did a press conference much later.
"I'm not very popular," he said laughing.