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Notes Thursday from the Stanley Cup final

PITTSBURGH - Dream goal - It wasn't the prettiest goal, but Pittsburgh checking forward Adam Hall lived out a fantasy by scoring the game-winner in a Stanley Cup final on Wednesday night.

Hall was behind the Detroit net when he banked the game-winner in off the back of one of scrambling goalie Chris Osgood's legs.

"There's no one way you dream about scoring it," the 27-year-old from Kalamazoo, Mich., said Thursday. "You just kind of dream about the celebration - your teammates rushing in.

"You never get to pick and chose what situation you end up in. You just do everything you can out there. It was just a great feeling."


Sage advice - Some coaches call on a former teammate or coaching mentor when they need advice. Detroit Red Wings coach Mike Babcock solicits help from one of the most successful coaches in pro sports history.

Babcock has the advantage of being able to talk to former Red Wings coach Scotty Bowman face-to-face during the Stanley Cup finals, because Bowman was in Pittsburgh to drop the ceremonial first puck before Game 3.

Babcock leans heavily on Bowman's advice, and why wouldn't he? Bowman is a nine-time Cup winner with Montreal, Pittsburgh and Detroit and he still watches numerous games at his home in Florida.

"We talk about if their coach does this, what am I going to do?" Babcock said Thursday. "And if he does that. Or did you like this player last night? Or what did you think of this? We go through it all."


Orpik's Epic - If the Penguins rally to win the Stanley Cup, defenceman Brooks Orpik's third-period shift during their 3-2 win in Game 3 is likely to be recalled for years.

Throwing his body around recklessly, Orpik was credited with four hits in a 14-second span as the Penguins fought to get the Red Wings out of their zone. Orpik had two hits on Dallas Drake and one each on Kris Draper and Daniel Cleary.

Orpik said it is important for the much younger Penguins to be physical against the Red Wings, especially the longer the series goes.

"That was awesome," teammate Max Talbot said. "I mean, it was probably one of the loudest moments I've seen (from) this crowd. It was great. The shift was just amazing".

Orpik said he wasn't being carelessly aggressive because that might have created a scoring chance.

"The opportunity was there and, when it's there this time of the year, you really want to make them pay," Orpik said. "Like I said, that's kind of my role on the team".


Silent Sid - For the first time since the Stanley Cup playoffs began during the first week of April, Sidney Crosby got a day off Thursday. From the media, that is.

Crosby, the Penguins' captain, had met with the media each day of the post-season and, sometimes, twice a day. The only exception came when the Penguins had extended breaks between series.

But during an off day Thursday in which neither team skated, the Penguins sent forwards Max Talbot and Hall and defencemen Orpik and Ryan Whitney as their media representatives.

No doubt for Crosby, it was a much-welcomed day of silence following his two-goal game Wednesday.


Odds on Wings - Three of the last four teams to take a 2-1 series lead into a road Game 4 of the Stanley Cup finals won, with the exception being New Jersey in 2003 against Babcock's Anaheim Mighty Ducks. The Devils won that series in seven games after leading 2-0.

Neither team is doing much with a man advantage. Detroit is 2-for-19 on the power play and Pittsburgh is 1-for-11.

-With files from The Associated Press.



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