The best hockey game I have ever played.
I have been playing hockey games since Ice Hockey for the NES, so clearly I am the most qualified man on the planet to review NHL 09. It really is the greatest hockey game ever. Up until NHL 07 introduced the skill stick, hockey games were pretty much all about checking all the time until you could get the puck for long enough to score a cheese one timer goal. For the 07 game EA switched up the formula, reducing checking effectiveness way down and putting more emphasis on stick handling & setting up plays.
09 takes the basic gameplay changes of 07 and adds more to it. Create a Pro adds more depth to both offline & online play. There are new moves on the ice, like being able to dump & chase the puck effectively. They fixed some of the glitchy goals from the old games (although I've seen some new glitchy goals in this one).
As a huge fan of the 2K hockey games in the past, I can say that the NHL 0X series, and especially NHL 09, have taken the spot as the best hockey games of all time.