Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Jeff Patterson of TSN,
So this much is clear: the series is tied -- and the series is on. Oh, it’s on alright. Friday’s late-game fireworks at Rogers Arena signalled the return of the rivalry between the Vancouver Canucks and Calgary Flames. How any of the five-on-five brawl carries over as the scene shifts to the Saddledome on Sunday remains to be seen, but there is no question that a healthy amount of dislike has been introduced into this Western Canadian showdown. And that’s exactly as it should be at this time of the year, especially between two long-time rivals.
Coming into the series, much was made of the high-end youth on the Calgary Flames – Sean Monahan, Johnny Gaudreau and 18-year-old Sam Bennett, but through the first two games of the series, it’s Canucks' prize rookie Bo Horvat who has set the bar for the first-time playoff participants. Horvat nearly blew the roof off Rogers Arena with an electrifying first period end-to-end dash that resulted in a Dennis Wideman delay of game penalty for knocking the puck out of play. The Canucks scored on the ensuing power play to take a 2-0 lead. Horvat later fed fellow freshman, Ronalds Kenins, for the 3-0 goal early in the third period to give the Canucks some breathing room. Horvat, who turned 20 earlier this month, has a point in each of his first two Stanley Cup playoff appearances and sits atop the Canucks post-season scoring derby at this early stage of the proceedings.
NEW YORK (April 18, 2015) – Calgary Flames Head Coach Bob Hartley has been fined $50,000 for his responsibility for the incident that took place with 1:17 remaining in regulation of the first-round playoff game in Vancouver on Friday, April 17, the National Hockey League announced today. The fine was issued in accordance with By-Law 17.3 (a) for conduct prejudicial to or against the welfare of the League.
In addition, the National Hockey League announced that the game misconduct assessed to Calgary Flames defenseman Deryk Engelland for instigating a fight in the last five minutes of regulation has been rescinded.
Hartley was fined $25,000 for a similar incident during the 2013-14 regular season.
The fine money goes to the NHL Foundation.
from Rick Westhead of TSN,
Los Angeles Kings forward Jarret Stoll will probably be able to negotiate a "slap on the wrist" after being arrested and charged in Las Vegas on Friday for possession of cocaine and another illegal recreational drug, says a former state prosecutor.
Michael Pariente, who has been a criminal defence lawyer in Las Vegas since 2006, said he's represented dozen of people accused of drug possession - many of them Canadian - and in every case, the prosecutor has offered first time offenders a plea deal.
Pariente said prosecutors in Clark County, Nevada, would probably allow Stoll to plead guilty to misdemeanour possession of a dangerous drug not to be introduced into inner state commerce. If he does plead guilty to that misdemeanour, Stoll, who was released Friday night on $5,000 bail, according to court records, would probably pay a fine of up to $1,000. He's also be required to take online drug awareness court, a computer course that requires about four hours of time but can be completed anywhere.
"It's pretty much a slap on the wrist," Pariente said in an interview. "Even if he was going to represent himself they'd make him an offer like this."
Video of how the injury happened is below...
from Brett Cyrgalis of the New York Post,
Oh, those subtle subplots of the playoffs. This is part of what makes it fun, no?
Rangers coach Alain Vigneault spent part of Friday afternoon voicing his opinion about the Penguins crashing the crease and disturbing his goalie, Henrik Lundqvist, just to make sure it’s out there for the start of Game 2 on Saturday night at the Garden.
Vigneault made it clear he wants to see a little more diligence on the parts of the referees going forward in this first-round series — or at least more than they saw in Thursday’s 2-1 win in Game 1.
“Hank plays in the blue paint,” Vigneault said, referring to how Lundqvist plays deep in his net and almost always in the crease. “When he gets hit, the blue paint is the goaltender, because there’s a willingness [from the Penguins] to go there and disturb. There’s a lot of stuff from certain of their players that we knew was going to happen after the whistle. We hope that the referees are going to see it and call it, and we’re going to play whistle-to-whistle and be a very disciplined team.”
Home Team in Caps
MONTREAL 3, Ottawa 2 (OT) – MTL leads 2-0
WASHINGTON 4, NY Islanders 3 – series tied 1-1
NASHVILLE 6, Chicago 2 – series tied 1-1
VANCOUVER 4, Calgary 1 – series tied 1-1
GALCHENYUK LIFTS CANADIENS PAST SENATORS IN OT
The Senators notched the tying goal with 6:35 remaining in regulation, but Alex Galchenyuk scored at 3:40 of overtime to power the Canadiens to a 2-0 series lead.
* Galchenyuk, the third overall selection by the Canadiens in the 2012 NHL Draft, recorded his second career postseason overtime goal (also May 22, 2014 vs. NYR). At 21 years, 64 days, Elias says he became the second player in franchise history to post two playoff overtime goals before his 22nd birthday. The other: Claude Lemieux, who achieved that milestone at 20 years, 293 days on May 5, 1986 at NYR.
* Making his return to the lineup following a three-game absence, Max Paciorettyscored the tying goal (on the power play) early in the second period. Pacioretty paced the team and shared fifth in the NHL with 37 goals during the regular season, two shy of his career high established in 2013-14.
from Ed Willes of the Vancouver Province,
Bob Hartley, who has a knack of making the story about him even after his team has been drilled like a molar, tried to turn the after-conversation into what happened in the last minute of Game 2 instead of what happened in the first 59 minutes.
But after all the he-said, she-said this one was pretty simple. In a comprehensive beat down, the Vancouver Canucks evened their opening round series with the Calgary Flames 1-1, setting the stage for the long and fierce battle which was predicted all along.
Sure the other stuff is entertaining.
But, in the final analysis, it's mostly meaningless.
"Regardless of what people are talking about, we got a big win tonight," said Kevin Bieksa. "We got a win where we felt like we outplayed them for the whole game."
Below is an extended version of the line brawl between Calgary and Vancouver...
from Bernie Miklasz of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
What’s maddening is how the Blues lost.
“You get down one at home and hope to pick it up a notch and that would be a wake-up call,” Blues captain David Backes said after Game 1. “It almost took until the third period until we finally got our legs going and played our brand of hockey.”
Therein lies a fundamental problem: With so much at stake, including their own reputations as competitors, why do the Blues need a wake-up call?
If the Blues can’t get cranked up by the challenge of taking on the Wild and shutting up skeptics who expect another STL postseason collapse, then what will it take to get them going? This is perplexing.
Blues players are well aware of the team’s futile-franchise postseason rep and resent being linked to it. The players know that the long-suffering Blues faithful have experienced more playoff disappointments than any fan base should have to endure. But the current Blues don’t think it’s fair to dump historical grievances on them.
from Don Brennan of the Ottawa Sun,
As the Senators appeared headed for a regulation time loss at Bell Centre Friday, you could anticipate the first question asked of coach Dave Cameron the next morning.
Trailing the first round playoff with the Montreal Canadiens 2-0, would he turn to Craig Anderson when the series switched back to Ottawa for Game 3 Sunday?
Surely, he'd give it some thought.
Andrew (The Hamburglar) Hammond still gets no respect -- despite the way he heroically led the Senators from the grave to the playoffs. Everybody expects his leash with Cameron is short, despite the fact he was 20-1-2 to end the season.
They seem to forget Anderson has played just four games since Jan. 21, winning one. They believe Cameron will turn to the hero of Ottawa's 2013 playoff series win over the Habs at the first sign of Hammond weakening.
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.
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