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Morning Line- Mike Lange

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Filed in: NHL Teams, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
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Pens vs. Preds

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Nicholas J. Cotsonika of NHL.com,

At points in their history, the Penguins haven't been much different than the Nashville Predators have been in theirs. Now they're trying to become the seventh team to win the Cup five times and the first to win it back to back since the Detroit Red Wings did it in 1998, before the NHL salary cap, while the Predators are trying to win it for the first time.

The best-of-7 series starts in Pittsburgh on Monday (8 p.m. ET; NBC, CBC, SN, TVA Sports). When it is over, the Penguins will have joined an exclusive group, or the Predators will have broken through with the first big-league sports championship in Nashville history. Either way, in the big picture, it will be a heck of a comeback story.

The Penguins joined the NHL in 1967, went bankrupt in 1975 and were saved from relocation. They took 24 seasons to make the Eastern Conference Final. When they made it in 1991, they won the Cup. They won it again in 1992. They went bankrupt again in 1998 and were saved from relocation again in 2007 when they closed a deal for a new arena. They won the Cup in 2009, moved into their new arena in 2010 and won the Cup again last season. Now they are a model franchise.

The Predators joined the League in 1998 and were saved from relocation in 2007. They took 18 seasons to make the Western Conference Final. When they made it this year, they defeated the Anaheim Ducks in six games, setting up this matchup.

Sure, it's Steel City vs. Music City, western Pennsylvania vs. middle Tennessee, sandwiches stuffed with French fries vs. barbecue and hot chicken. It's the defending champions vs. the upstarts, the No. 2 team in the regular season vs. the No. 16 team. It's a team strong at center with Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin vs. a team strong on defense with Ryan Ellis, Mattias Ekholm, Roman Josi and P.K. Subban.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Nashville Predators, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Quest To Repeat Continues For The Pittsburgh Penguins

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Craig Custance of ESPN,

It took a couple of overtimes against a relentlessly resilient Ottawa Senators team, but the reigning champs will get their shot at a repeat.

Pittsburgh Penguins forward Chris Kunitz scored his second goal of the game to beat the Senators 3-2 in double overtime during Game 7 of the Eastern Conference finals.

It sets up a Stanley Cup finals in which we'll either see the first back-to-back Stanley Cup winner in the salary-cap era or the first Stanley Cup in the history of the Nashville Predators franchise.

How it happened: The Penguins pressured consistently in the third period and both overtimes, but Senators goalie Craig Anderson was outstanding again until the Kunitz goal. Anderson finished with 39 saves.

A big moment came when the Penguins got a third-period power play on a soft call on Dion Phaneuf, who was called for interference on Phil Kessel. The two former teammates had been going at it all series, and Kessel ended up getting the better of his good friend in this case.

Just 25 seconds into the power play, Penguins defenseman Justin Schultz beat Anderson in large part because of a nice screen from Kunitz, who played his best game of the series. Game 7 was the first game for Schultz since he was injured early on in Game 2.

continued

Below, Gene Collier of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, plua game highlights and Mike Sullivan post-game too...

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Ottawa Senators, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

From The Side Of The Ottawa Senators

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

from Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun,

The Ottawa Senators played with heart, but lost a heartbreaker.

The pain was evident by the looks on their faces in a quiet dressing room.

The Senators were unable to claim what would have been the first Game 7 in franchise history as Chris Kunitz scored his second of the game, a double-OT winner, to give the defending champion Pittsburgh Penguins a 3-2 win to capture the Prince of Wales Trophy and advance to the Stanley Cup Finals.

Instead of hosting Game 1 of the Cup final Monday night at home, the Senators will head to the the Canadian Tire Centre on the weekend to pack their bags after the most successful season in recent history that included playoff wins over the Boston Bruins and New York Rangers.

“It’s heartbreaking because you know the nature of the business side of things and you know the group will never be the same,” said winger Bobby Ryan. “It’s heartbreaking. You realize we’ve got two days together here and then we’re gone for the summer.

“We didn’t want it to end but they came up one shot better.”

This was a great game in every way, shape and form. You really had to wonder if it was ever going to end as both goalies came up big. Kunitz beat Craig Anderson high to send the crowd into hysterics at 5:09 of the second overtime

continued

Below, video of a few of the Ottawa players post-game...

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Ottawa Senators, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Videos- Coach’s Corner Last Night

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

Most of the segment was focused on all things Penguins and Senators.

 

 

Two more segments below...

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Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

NHL Short Notes

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

PENGUINS OUTLAST SENATORS IN 2OT TO RETURN TO STANLEY CUP FINAL
Chris Kunitz (2-1—3) scored his second goal of the contest at 5:09 of the second overtime period as the defending Stanley Cup champion Penguins defeated the Senators in Game 7 to advance to the Stanley Cup Final for the second straight season and sixth time overall.
 

 

 
* Pittsburgh became the first NHL team to make consecutive appearances in the Stanley Cup Final since it faced Detroit in back-to-back years in 2008 (4-2 L) and 2009 (4-3 W). The Penguins, who also appeared in the Final in 1991 and 1992, are the first team in the NHL’s expansion era (since 1967-68) to make consecutive Final appearances on three separate occasions.
 
* The Penguins improved to 10-7 in 17 all-time Game 7s, including a 2-0 mark in the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs (also SR at WSH: 2-0 W). Pittsburgh appeared in multiple Game 7s within a single postseason for the second time in franchise history (also 2009 CSF at WSH: 6-2 W and 2009 F at DET: 2-1 W).
 
* The Penguins won a Game 7 in the Conference Finals for the second straight postseason (also 2016 CF vs. TBL: 2-1 W). Elias notes that Pittsburgh became the fifth team in NHL history to win a Game 7 to reach the Stanley Cup Final in consecutive playoff years and first since Dallas in 1999 and 2000.
 
* The Penguins improved to 4-1 in five all-time playoff series against the Senators, including four straight series wins dating to the 2008 Conference Quarterfinals.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Kulfan discusses the Grand Rapids Griffins’ success

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

The Detroit News's Ted Kulfan penned a superb article discussing the establishment of the Grand Rapids Griffins as a sporting and hockey superpower in Western Michigan, speaking with players, fans and ownership about the Griffins' status as a "people's team":

The Griffins are the Red Wings’ minor league affiliate — they have been since 2002 — and their niche in the west Michigan market is growing.

“I might be biased, but this is the best American Hockey League city there is,” said Griffins forward Mitch Callahan, whose late third-period goal Wednesday snapped a 2-2 tie. “The other night I was out to dinner; a guy bought me an appetizer and wished me good luck before we went to California. The city is behind us and the support is amazing. Hockey is pretty big in Michigan. With the success we’re having, it’s fun being around here.”

Capacity, or near-capacity crowds, are expected for Games 4 and 5 Friday and Saturday at the 10,834-seat Van Andel, with a possible trip to the Calder Cup Finals at stake. The Griffins, who won the Calder Cup in 2013, lead the series, 2-1. This is their fifth consecutive year in the playoffs.

Kulfan continues...

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink
 

Your Stanley Cup Final Schedule

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

NEW YORK (May 25, 2017) – The National Hockey League announced today the broadcast schedule for the 2017 Stanley Cup Final, which begins Monday, May 29, in Pittsburgh.

Based on their superior regular-season point total, the Eastern Conference champion Pittsburgh Penguins will host Games 1 and 2 of the best-of-seven Stanley Cup Final, as well as Games 5 and 7, if necessary.

The Western Conference champion Nashville Predators will host Games 3 and 4, as well as Game 6, if necessary.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Nashville Predators, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

The Pittsburgh Penguins Advance To The Stanley Cup Final

Blog: KK Hockey By Paul

It's on the Stanley Cup Final for the Pittsburgh Penguins after defeating the Ottawa Senators 3-2 in 2OT.

The Penguins will host the Nashville Predators for the first two games (Monday and Wednesday).

The game-winning goal from Chris Kunitz is below...

added 12:09am 5/26/17, Video of handshakes added below too...

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Ottawa Senators, Pittsburgh Penguins, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Grand Rapids Griffins post video of Eric Tangradi’s take on Game 3 of WCF

Blog: The Malik Report By George Malik

The Grand Rapids Griffins have posted a 4-minute video of forward Eric Tangradi's reflections on the Griffins' win over the San Jose Barracuda in Game 3 of the Western Conference Final:

Filed in: | The Malik Report | Permalink
 

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