National Hockey League

Who would have thought? Reto Berra got his first start in the NHL against the Blackhawks, the defending Stanley Cup champion, last night - and showed right away what he is capable of.

Photo: Calgary Flames (Twitter)

Awarded 1st star of the game with 42 stops out of 44 shots on his goal, the award of the fire helmet from his teammates as the games hardest worker must be an even greater honour.

"I was really nervous. But right before the game, when I was just sitting in here, I just thought, 'Go out and play your game and have fun. You have nothing to lose", Berra told nhl.com after the game. And he certainly did go out there and play his game - big time!

With Abbotsford his season-high in stops was 31 - in his first NHL-start with the Flames, Berra was able to make a fantastic 42 stops, only having been beaten twice by one of the strongest offensive departments in the NHL.

Here are some media reviews and quotes from coaches and players, find videos of Berra's saves further below:

Bob Hartley, head coach of the Calgary Flames:

"I'm very proud of Reto. He played tonight the same way as I've seen him play for a full year in Switzerland. Obviously, it's not the same caliber [of competition], but just the poise that he showed throughout the game … he never got rattled and was in perfect control on every shot. The two shots that beat him were perfect shots."

Joel Quenneville, head coach of the Chicago Blackhawks:

"Well, I think you look at [Berra] a little bit before the game and he's a big guy and you're going to need traffic to beat him. We did put pucks [at the net], but we didn't get enough rebounds and we didn't get enough traffic. He was pretty good controlling those rebounds tonight, as well."

Curtis Glencross, Calgary Flames:

"We have to hand it to (Berra), coming in and playing his first game with us. Stood on his head, 40-some shots on goal. We stuck with it."

Patrick Kane, Chicago Blackhawks:

"In the first period he (Berra) probably got a little bit of confidence. We had some point shots that maybe he didn't see he was getting pads and his body on. He's a good goaltender, but sometimes you've got to generate a little more."

Calgary Herald:

"Swiss goalie Berra shines in debut, leading Flames to victory over defending Stanley Cup champs. Thrown into fire upon call-up, rookie makes 42 saves as Calgary wins 3-2 in overtime."

Calgary Sun:

"Berra was the first star — and could have been the second and third star, too (...) surrendering just two tallies to the defending Stanley Cup champions and making his boss look like a genius for giving him his first start in one of the NHL’s most intimidating settings just one day after his callup from the AHL’s Abbotsford Heat."

Chicago Tribune:

"Kris Russell scored 1 minute, 32 seconds into overtime, Curtis Glencross had a goal and an assist and Mike Cammalleri also scored for Calgary, but it was Berra who stole the show. (...) Berra was (...) pretty unbelievable himself, turning aside wave after wave of shots from a Hawks offense that had a combined 16 goals in its last three games."