29/09/2021 Premier League Grand Final game 1 – Jokers v Redwings 4-2

The much anticipated Premier League grand final series between the Jokers and the Redwings began with game 1 on Wednesday 29/09/2021. In between the pipes for the Jokers was Jeremy Friederich and for the Redwings was Curtis Villani. It was apparent right from the outset this game was going to have plenty of aggressive play and checks to keep the large number of spectators entertained. The Jokers Ben Handberg and Redwings Max Rivers both got called for roughing 4mins into the game. The Jokers would open the scoring account first, but only after Redwings Adam Wise headed to the box for slashing, given the player advantage with 10:27 remaining in the period. Nathaniel Benson found the back of the net with 9:39 remaining after an assist from Jake Riley. The Redwings would eventually tie the score with just over one minute remaining when Dave Gal scored after an assist from Tyler Leeming.

Jokers Ted Fabijan was done for roughing but only after a cross check from Nicola Pau which also led to Redwings Steve Best getting 2mins for roughing. The Redwings were unable to score with the extra player, and again after Jokers Nathaniel Benson was called for holding the stick of an opponent. With just over 11mins remaining the Jokers scored the go-ahead goal as Noah Maley scored with the assist coming from Daniel Chen. The Jokers would stamp their authority as favourites by adding another goal through Andrew Chen. The assists came from veteran Sami Mantere and Marko Komazek. Jokers Jake Riley gave the Redwings another opportunity deep into the period after a cross check, but the Jokers defence stood firm.

Shortly into the 3rd period the Redwings did shorten the deficit to one goal (2-3) with Tyler Leeming teaming up with Gal. Two minutes later though they would be on the back foot with Wise heading to the penalty box for slashing. However, this time it was the Redwings defence that was able to withstand the Jokers barrage on goalie Curtis Villani by the Jokers. The Jokers then added another safety goal to create a 2-goal margin with 12:05 remaining in the game. Jake Riley scored with Nathaniel Benson getting the assist. Three minutes later the Jokers were under pressure as Nathaniel Benson fell foul of the referees for hooking. The Redwings couldn’t find a way past Friederich though. The Redwings had another chance with a player advantage when Fabijan headed to the bench after a cross check with 4:39 remaining. The scores remained the same and the Jokers took out game 1 of the best of 3 series 4-2. Shots on goal for the game were Friederich facing 32 shots and Villani facing 27.