Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Stephen Brunt of the Globe and Mail,
Praise the Boston head coach, but praise the Boston players as well, of course, for scrapping back in this series after seeming a bit shell-shocked in game one, the 12th of 13 consecutive losses to the Canadiens dating back to last season.
They have been in every minute since, and could have considered themselves unlucky not to have come away with another win. Though as an eighth seed going up against a one, returning to the loudest, most intimidating building in the league, there was also every reason to surrender to the inevitable.
There was every reason to surrender a whole bunch of times this year, with terrible injuries and an obvious deficit in scoring talent, during phases of the schedule when it seemed Boston was everyone’s favourite candidate to cough up a playoff spot.
from the Dallas Morning News,
Turco was at his sprawling, acrobatic best against the Ducks, stopping 27 of 28 shots, and coming within 7.6 seconds of a shutout as the Stars beat Anaheim, 3-1.
“If it wasn’t for him,” said Stephane Robidas, “we would’ve been out of the game in the first period.”
Turco’s performance gave Dallas control of the series – three games to one – while the Stars won at American Airlines Center for only the second time in nine playoff games.
From Judd Zulgad at the Star Tribune,
Anyone who tuned into KSTC’s telecast of the Wild playoff game Monday night at Colorado likely came away believing Marc Joannette and Tim Peel are among the NHL’s most incompetent referees.
How could viewers have any other impression after listening to Wild play-by-play man Dan Terhaar and analyst Mike Greenlay? The latter spent far too much time criticizing the officials and the former did nothing to rein him in during the Wild’s 3-2 overtime victory.
continued… with a look at coverage through the first 3 games of the series.
from the CP via the Globe and Mail,
Glen Metropolit scored after a gaffe by goalie Carey Price to ignite a four-goal third period and keep the Boston Bruins playoff hopes alive with a 5-1 victory over the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday night.
Montreal leads the best-of-seven Eastern Conference quarter-final series 3-2 but missed a chance to clinch and now must return to Boston for Game 6 on Saturday night.
Watch the Metropolit goal…
from Lightning Strikes,
The representative for Russian freight train Evgeny Artyukhin said he and Tampa Bay are talking about a contract. This would be a good thing for the Lightning as the 6-foot-4, 254-pound left wing would provide some muscle and forechecking power to a team that, for the most part last season, lacked a physical edge.
The Lightning was mum Thursday, but Gandler said, “Both sides want to see Evgeny back playing in Tampa next season and for the next few seasons.”
Of a contract, he said, without giving specifics, “It think it’s doable and it should be done.”
from John Dellapina of the NY Daily News (Friday edition),
The prospect of seeing Martin Brodeur have to shake Sean Avery’s hand sometime after 10 o’clock Friday might prove too tantalizing for most Rangers fans to concentrate on their day jobs Friday.
The Rangers themselves insist they won’t have the same problem.
Tonight, the Rangers get their first of three chances to eliminate the Devils and advance to the second round of the Stanley Cup tournament when they take their 3-1 series lead into Game 5 at the Rock in Newark. The trick is to make that handshake line happen by not focusing on it until a series-ending buzzer sounds.
from Mark Spector of the National Post,
Things we’re learning in a first round that reminds us that no matter how long we keep trying to pick this game, the predictions never get any easier to get right.
If the Ottawa Senators were the family pet, you’d have put them under after Game 2. And as noble as Daniel Alfredsson was to come out and play at about 60% in Games 3 and 4, it looks now like an ill-advised admission by Senators management that the lineup they iced in Games 1 and 2 was so far from beating Pittsburgh, even a clearly injured Alfredsson would be an improvement.
In the column, tiled “Beaten To the Punch,” Wise called the club “an instant repudiation of what (Commissioner) Gary Bettman wanted the league to become” and “a reminder of the NHL’s pugilistic past that just won’t go away.”
“They flat-out market and sell violence here, sanctioned, unbridled assaults disguised as sport,” Wise wrote. He also said, “Many of the women and children in the crowd looked as if they could be security for Megadeth.”
The Flyers planned to distribute 20,000 copies of the article at Thursday night’s game, but the Post sent a cease-and-desist order. So, what did the Flyers do? They put the article up on the big screen over the ice surface, Clark reported.
One Flyers public relations official also wore a long-haired wig and a black shirt with the heavy metal band’s name emblazoned across his back Thursday night.
Read Mike Wise’s original article [link may require free reg.] that appeared in yesterday’s Washington Post.
from On The Forecheck,
This Predators/Red Wings series is shaping up to be a real struggle no matter which team ends up winning; Nashville can claim momentum heading into Game 5, but Detroit has two games at home in what has now become a best-of-three affair, so I don’t think there’s a significant advantage to either side right now. One area in which the Red Wings are dominating, however, is the faceoff circle, and that’s where I’d like to provide more detail than what fans usually see.
Overall, Detroit boasts a 130-112 advantage in Faceoff Wins in this series, gaining possession after 53.7% of draws.
continued for numerous breakdowns from the face-off circle…
From Paul Kukla at Hockey.com,
In the playoffs the team that won the latest game seems to have all the momentum to keep on rolling, right to a series win. But hold on, put on the brakes, there are more games to be played and fortunes can turn around quickly. All it takes is a loss and panic becomes the key word.
Early Tuesday evening, the Calgary Flames could do no wrong. The were coming off a stunning comeback and life was good. Bam, Thornton scores and we now hear the Flames are in a nasty mood, bickering within the locker room has begun. Now what?
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.
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