Sean Leahy

  • How a Nikita Kucherov goal helped Tampa couple name their child

    Sean Leahy at Puck Daddy 18 hrs ago

    Sports fans are known to name things after their favorite athletes. Whether it’s car, a pet or a child, the names stick and provide a backstory. (Remember Malkin Crosby Long?)

    So it’s no surprise that a Tampa area newborn, who entered the world early on Tuesday morning, shares a name with one of the Tampa Bay Lightning’s biggest stars.

    No, not Steven after captain Steven Stamkos. No, not Ben after goaltender Ben Bishop. No, not even Victor, after stud defenseman Victor Hedman.

    At 8:48 a.m. ET on Tuesday, Nikita Annette Franklin was born, named after forward Nikita Kucherov.

    [Join a Yahoo Daily Fantasy Hockey contest today]

    How did Laine and Eric Franklin land on Nikita as a name for their daughter? While attending a game last season, Laine informed Eric that she was pregnant. Jokingly, Eric told her that they should name the child after the Lightning player who scored the first goal in that game. Sure enough, it was Kucherov. 

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  • Jim Craig on selling 'Miracle' gold medal, hockey inspirations (Puck Daddy Q&A)

    Sean Leahy at Puck Daddy 22 hrs ago

    Second thoughts? Jim Craig hasn’t had any.

    The goaltender for the 1980 “Miracle on Ice” hockey team isn’t getting cold feet about deciding to part with some cherished memorabilia from the Team USA's gold medal winning run in Lake Placid, New York 36 years ago.

    After trying to sell a 19-piece lot that included his gold medal and iconic goalie mask last summer, Craig has decided to put 17 items up for auction individually through Lelands, a Long Island-based auction house. The gold medal and mask are joined by the jerseys he wore versus the Soviet Union and Finland, his “lucky” stick, and the American flag that was draped around his shoulders following the team’s final game of the tournament. 

    Do you have any items on display at home that you’ve decided against selling?

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  • NHL Three Stars: Crosby, Murray lead Penguins in Game 6

    Sean Leahy at Puck Daddy 1 day ago

    No. 1 Star: Sidney Crosby, Pittsburgh Penguins

    Crosby scored what would end up being his third game-winning goal of the postseason to give the Penguins a 3-0 lead with 26 seconds left in the second period. It was the 49th postseason goal of his career. He also added an assist on Kessel’s opening tally. 

    No. 2 Star: Brian Boyle, Tampa Bay Lightning 

    The third period was all Boyle as he recorded his first career multi-goal playoff game with a pair to help Tampa cut the Pittsburgh lead from 3-0 to 3-2.

    No. 3 Star: Matt Murray, Pittsburgh Penguins

    Back in the Penguins’ net, Murray made 28 stops to help force a Game 7 Thursday night. According to Elias, Murray became the first Penguins rookie netminder to record a win when facing elimination. He's now 4-0 following a loss.

    Honorable Mention: Phil Kessel opened the scoring with his ninth of the playoffs, most by a Penguins player since Crosby and Evgeni Malkin in 2009 … Nick Bonino recorded his third multi-point game of the playoffs … Bryan Rust blazed in on a breakaway to score his third playoff goal:

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  • Sidney Crosby slices through Tampa defense, scores beauty (Video)

    Sean Leahy at Puck Daddy 1 day ago

    After tallying a late first period goal to take a 1-0 lead, the Pittsburgh Penguins made the most out of the middle 20 minutes of Game 5.  

    Facing elimination in Tampa, the Penguins scored twice to put the Lightning in position facing a 3-0 deficit as the final period approached. Topping off the two-goal second period was Sidney Crosby, who beat a pair defenders with 26 seconds to go to notch his sixth goal of the playoffs.

    [Join a Yahoo Daily Fantasy Hockey contest today]

    According to the NHL, the goal was Crosby’s 49th postseason tally and helped Pittsburgh build up a big lead after 40 minutes, something they’ve been dominant at keeping secure all season long (47-1-0). It was also the Penguins captain's third game-winner of the postseason as they would go on to win 5-2 and force a Game 7.

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  • Jonathan Drouin goal ruled offside as Penguins win early challenge (Video)

    Sean Leahy at Puck Daddy 1 day ago

    The Tampa Bay Lightning thought they had grabbed the lead 5:12 into Game 6, but a wise challenge by Pittsburgh Penguins head coach Mike Sullivan wiped the goal off the scoreboard. 

    Jonathan Drouin would have had his fifth goal of the postseason after pouncing on a loose puck in front of the Pittsburgh net, but the review showed that the young Lightning forward’s skate caused the offside.

    From the NHL Situation Room blog:

    Sullivan said afterward his video coach, Andy Saucier, radioed the bench to let them know the play was close enough for them to challenge.

    As we saw in Game 4, getting the first goal early helped power the Lightning to a victory. The coach’s challenge by Sullivan was huge in quieting a frenzied Amalie Arena crowd and Pittsburgh would go on to win 5-2 win.

    According to Sportsnet, this was the eighth goal in these playoffs overturned after an offside ruling.

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  • Brian Elliott back in Blues' goal for Game 6 facing elimination

    Sean Leahy at Puck Daddy 1 day ago

    The Blues head coach announced on Tuesday that Brian Elliott will start Game 6, one day after Jake Allen allowed four goals on 25 shots in a 6-3 loss to the San Jose Sharks. St. Louis heads back out west with their season on the line Wednesday night facing a 3-2 series deficit. 

    "It's his turn. It's his turn for Game 6," said Hitchcock.

    Elliott had been the man in goal for the Blues this postseason, winning them a pair Game 7s in the opening two rounds. Now in the conference fina versus the Sharks, St. Louis took Game 1, but responded by being shutout in back-to-back games, leading Hitchcock to make the switch to Allen.

    Hitchcock's reasoning for the swap was that Allen was the better puck mover and he wanted to give San Jose a different look in net. The plan worked in Game 4 with a 6-3 win, but not so much Monday night, and so here we are.

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    “Unfortunately, we didn't get the win yesterday but this has been Brian's playoffs and we'd like him to finish the job." 

  • John Brophy, legendary hockey coach, dead at 83

    Sean Leahy at Puck Daddy 2 days ago

    John Brophy, the long-time hockey coach who spent three years behind the bench for the Toronto Maple Leafs, has passed away at the age of 83, according to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman.

    Brophy coached just like his played: with toughness. One glance at his career playing statistics will show you that he wasn’t one who would back away from a fight. You couldn’t fill out the “PIM” column on his hockey card without using three digits.

    His playing career in the Eastern Hockey League took him from Baltimore to Charlotte to New Haven and to Philadelphia before he settled in for parts of eight seasons with the Long Island Ducks.

    How intense did Brophy get at times? Val James, who played under him on Long Island detailed in his book.

    From the Toronto Sun:

    No matter where he went, Brophy tried to instill his no-nonsense mentality into his teams.

    Brophy would leave the game of hockey with 1,027 professional coaching wins, second to only Scotty Bowman.

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  • Georges Laraque helps detain suspect in alleged kidnapping

    Sean Leahy at Puck Daddy 2 days ago

    A 24-year-old man who allegedly attempted to abduct a seven-year-old child in a Montreal park was thwarted by a group of family members and former NHLers Georges Laraque.

    According to police, the young girl was with her parents in Jeanne-Mance Park when a man came up and spoke with her. Moments later, he allegedly grabbed her and began to walk away before he was tackled by family members and restrained until police arrived. 

    Laraque was playing in a celebrity baseball game nearby when the game was stopped and the former NHL tough guy came over to help.

    "I just wanted to make sure that if he got up that I was going to tackle him right away," Laraque told CBC.

    Having a 6-foot-3, 240 lbs. ex-hockey enforcer stand guard is a perfect way to ensure that a criminal won't be eluding police.

    Police are now questioning the man and said he may undergo a psychological evaluation.

    A father to twins, the incident hit close to home for Laraque.

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  • NHL Three Stars: Vasilevskiy big again as Tampa takes Game 4

    Sean Leahy at Puck Daddy 5 days ago

    The Tampa netminder made 35 saves as the Lightning hung on for a 4-3 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins to even their conference finals series at two. Game 4 was the third straight game that Vasilevskiy made at least 35 saves. One of those saves came in the second period denying a good scoring opportunity by Kris Letang. 

    No. 2 Star: Nikita Kucherov, Tampa Bay Lightning

    Kucherov had the primary assist on Andrej Sustr’s first period goal and Tyler Johnson’s second period tally, which would hold up as the game winner. He’s now up to fourth overall in scoring this postseason.

    No. 3 Star: Victor Hedman, Tampa Bay Lightning

    Hedman tallied a pair of assists and led all Lightning players in ice time with 26:15 in Game 4. The two points move him into second in scoring among defensemen, five behind Brent Burns of the San Jose Sharks. Hedman now has 30 career playoff assists, passing Brad Richards (29) and Vincent Lecavalier (28) for second in franchise history.

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  • Penguins' Trevor Daley exits Game 4 with lower-body injury (Video)

    Sean Leahy at Puck Daddy 5 days ago

    The Pittsburgh Penguins lost Game 4 of their conference final series 4-3 to the Tampa Bay Lightning and may have lost Trevor Daley for an extended period of time.

    While retrieving a puck in the Penguins’ zone midway through the second period, Daley injured his left leg along the boards in a collision with Lightning forward Ryan Callahan.

    Head coach Mike Sullivan had no update after the game, but Daley was spotted on crutches after the game.

    Trevor Daley left the arena on crutches. His left foot looked to be in a cast.

    “He obviously has a lower-body injury. We'll have more updates tomorrow, but he's an important  player on our team,” Sullivan said. “So when we lose him for the rest of this game, he's a hard guy to replace.  He plays a lot of minutes. He plays in key situations. So when you lose him halfway through the game like we did and you get down to five -- it's hard enough going down to five, but when you  lose someone like Trevor that plays important minutes for us, it just makes it that much tougher.”

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