- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy9 hrs ago
For a moment, it appeared that Kristers Gudlevskis was going to finally get the best of a Canadian team.
But the moment belonged instead to Max Pacioretty and the Montreal Canadiens.
Pacioretty scored his first goal of the playoffs on the power play at 19:17, giving the Habs a 4-3 victory in Game 4 of their divisional semifinal against the Tampa Bay Lightning, completing a sweep and becoming the first team to advance in the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Gudlevskis, the Lightning’s rookie goalie, entered the game at 5:42 of the second period after starter Anders Lindback gave up his third goal on 20 shots at Bell Centre. If that name sounds familiar, it should: The Lightning goalie nearly pulled off one of the biggest upsets in Winter Olympic history back in February, when his 55-save performance gave eventual Sochi gold medal winner Canada the scare of its tournament in a 2-1 loss for Latvia.
Against Montreal in Game 4, Gudlevskis made 16 saves and backstopped a two-goal third-period rally for Tampa Bay to tie the game 3-3, on goals by Victor Hedman and Tyler Johnson.Tue, Apr 22Tampa Bay3 - 4MontrealGame Recap
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy17 hrs ago
It's a Tuesday edition of Marek vs. Wyshynski beginning at 2 p.m. ET/11 a.m. PT, and we're talking about the following and more:
Special Guest Star: Terry Ryan, author of "Tales of A First Round Nothing", spins many of those tales.
• The Matt Cooke hit and suspension.
• Marty St. Louis and the Lady Byng.
• Rally night in the NHL
• Tonight's playoff action.
Question of the Day: How many games for Matt Cooke and why? Email email@example.com or hit us on Twitter with the hashtag #MvsW to @wyshynski or @jeffmarek. Click here for the Sportsnet live stream or click the play button above!
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy18 hrs ago
The world is separated into those who preach and those who practice what they preach. I’d wager we have more respect for the latter as a society; don’t tell us “I’ll never make that mistake again,” just, like, don’t make it again. We’ll notice.
Matt Cooke of the Minnesota Wild has been on parole since March 2011, when he was suspended for 10 games and the first round of the postseason while with the Pittsburgh Penguins. It was his sixth suspension and second one that season. His career in the NHL was in question: Could this guy actually contribute anything beyond headhunting and cheap shots?
That August, Cooke famously came clean to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: a health crisis for his wife weighed on him, and gave him new perspective on his behavior. The Penguins were willing to stick by him despite his becoming a liability through suspensions. He was willing to change.
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy19 hrs ago
The NHL announced on Tuesday that forwards Patrick Marleau of the San Jose Sharks, Ryan O'Reilly of the Colorado Avalanche and Martin St. Louis of the New York Rangers are the three finalists for the 2013-14 Lady Byng Memorial Trophy, awarded “to the player adjudged to have exhibited the best type of sportsmanship and gentlemanly conduct combined with a high standard of playing ability.”
The trophy is voted on by the Professional Hockey Writers Association, with the top three vote getters as the finalists.
Immediately, the name that jumps out is St. Louis, whose contentious relationship with Tampa Bay Lightning GM Steve Yzerman following an initial snub for the Canadian Olympic team eventually led to his being traded to the Rangers at the deadline. He’s won the award three previous times, including last season.
So who takes home the Byng?
Why Patrick Marleau Deserves The Lady Byng
From the NHL:
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy20 hrs ago
Remember Gustav Nyquist?
Remember that guy who potted 28 goals in 57 games, including 12 in 15 games in March, to power the Detroit Red Wings’ injury-riddled offense and lead the team to a 23rd consecutive playoff appearance?
He hasn’t been around for a couple of weeks. His last goal was against the Boston Bruins on April 2. He’s picked up a pair of assists since then, but hasn’t found the back of the net in eight games, including the first two playoff games against the B’s. It’s his second-longest drought of the season, having gone nine games from Dec. 1-Dec. 23. So, basically, December.
So where has Nyquist gone? Considering, you know, that every goal matters when facing a defensive juggernaut like the Bruins.
Coach Mike Babcock did the ‘ole “he’s not scoring, but he’s doing everything else for us”routine with MLive.com:
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy21 hrs ago
The Pittsburgh Penguins rallied to win Game 3 against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Monday night, and for the third straight game goalie Sergei Bobrovsky was average at best.
But c’mon, ROOT Sports graphics department. No need to be mean about it.
Eh, maybe it was left over from the Halloween edition of their lineups, like the credits on The Simpsons’ Treehouse of Horror...Wed, Apr 234:00 PM PDTPittsburgh at ColumbusPreview Game
The last time Matt Cooke was suspended by the NHL was March 2011, and it was a doozy: 10 games plus the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the Pittsburgh Penguins, a total of 17 games for elbowing Ryan McDonagh of the New York Rangers.
Since then, he’s been a model citizen; OK, at least from a Dept. of Player Safety sense.
There was that hit on Adam McQuaid from the Boston Bruins that had some saying he should be banned from the NHL. And that unfortunate slicing of Erik Karlsson’s Achilles that led to Ottawa owner Eugene Melnyk’s preposterous CSI investigation of the incident.
But on Monday night in the Minnesota Wild’s Game 3 win against the Colorado Avalanche … oops, he did it again:
No. 1 Star: Mikael Granlund, Minnesota Wild
Granlund’s amazing individual effort produced the only goal in the Wild’s 1-0 overtime over the Colorado Avalanche, cutting their series deficit to 2-1.
No. 2 Star: Corey Crawford, Chicago Blackhawks
Crawford made 34 saves to lead the Blackhawks to a 2-0 victory over the St. Louis Blues, cutting that series deficit to 2-1. Jonathan Toews and Marcus Kruger had the goals.
No. 3 Star: Kari Lehtonen, Dallas Stars
Lehtonen made 37 saves as the Stars cut their deficit with the Anaheim Ducks to 2-1 in a 3-0 victory. Jamie Benn, Valeri Nichushkin and Ryan Garbutt had the goals.
Honorable mention: Semyon Varlamov (45 saves) and Darcy Kuemper (22 saves) put on goaltending show in Minnesota. … The Pittsburgh Penguins scored three goals on three straight shots in the third period, rallying to defeat the Columbus Blue Jackets, 4-3. Brandon Sutter, Lee Stempniak and Jussi Jokinen had the goals.Wed, Apr 236:30 PM PDTSt. Louis at ChicagoPreview Game
Defenseman Stephane Robidas played 10 seasons with the Dallas Stars before being traded to the Anaheim Ducks at the 2014 deadline. There were questions about how effective he would be after missing most of the season with a broken leg.
“I think when the deal happened, we didn’t know when my leg would be healed, we didn’t know when I would be ready, there were a lot of questions. [GM Jim Nill] gave me the opportunity to go to a team that was in the playoffs and a team that could go deep in the playoffs, and I’m very thankful, that’s for sure” he told the Dallas Morning News.
His homecoming was anything but happy. Robidas played 7:21 in Game 3 on Monday night before a collision with Ryan Garbutt ended his game. (This video is a tad graphic, so be forewarned.)
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The reaction from Robidas says it all: Another broken leg for the veteran defenseman.Wed, Apr 235:00 PM PDTAnaheim at DallasPreview Game
While there was enough blame to share as the Chicago Blackhawks lost the first two games of their series at the St. Louis Blues, goalie Corey Crawford took it all himself after giving up late goals to the Blues.
“Our guys need me to make a save at the end [of regulation], too. Really frustrating being up and losing the lead two games in a row in the last couple of minutes. It’s pretty much not acceptable. We’re not going to win if I’m going to play like that. Just got to be better,” he said after Game 2’s OT loss.
In Game 3, he was better: 34 shots faced, 34 saves for Crawford as the Blackhawks won, 2-0, and cut the Blues’ series lead to 2-1.
He made a few clutch saves throughout the game – earned chants of “Corey, Corey, Corey!” from the home crowd – and none was bigger than when he fought off an Alex Pietrangelo shot to his glove side in the waning seconds to preserve the lead.
"Just because we came here and got the first one at home doesn’t mean it’s going to be easy,” he said after the game.