NHL 09 is EA's NHL ice hockey sports game, which introduces some innovations to the long running franchise.
The big change in NHL 09 is the Be A Pro mode, which like a role playing game, lets you create a character, and then build their career and skills as they progress to the pro league.
The other main NHL 09 mode is the EA Sports Hockey League, which lets you take your Be A Pro character online and play multiplayer matches. Playing with other players is fantastic, although the attributes your own player has are not carried from the Be A Pro mode.
Using a joypad is essential to get the most out of the controls, which have something called 'Skill Stick', which uses the right analog stick to control the hockey stick. This takes time to get used to, but gives NHL 09 a more simulation-like feel. Arcade lovers can revert to old fashioned controls if they want!