- Harrison Mooney at Puck Daddy21 mins ago
After falling behind 2-0 early in Wednesday night's Game 4 versus the Anaheim Ducks, the Dallas Stars got on the board thanks to a Jamie Benn goal. They never looked back, scoring thrice more to win the game and even the first round series at two games apiece. Some would probably say Benn's goal kicked off the rally.
But he didn't start the fire. As the Dallas News points out, it wasn't Benn. It was the Rally Belly.
In the stoppage in play just prior to Benn's huge goal, the Dallas cameras found a group of kids up in the stands, one of which immediately lifted his shirt and started doing belly rolls. Proudly. Dedicatedly. Seriously. This kid rolled his belly like the Stars' playoff lives hinged on it.
And it did. Benn scored. Then, six minutes later, Vernon Fiddler scored, at which point the cameras went back to the kid to acknowledge the inspiring presence of the #RallyBelly (and make one Hell of a Goonies reference).
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy59 mins ago
Patrick Kane has scored his share of big goals for the Chicago Blackhawks. Goals that win Stanley Cups in overtime. (Reporter: “Wait, WHAT?!”) Goals that win overtime playoff games. Many, many goals.
Now, not to be that guy but he only punches around five numbers at the most. Of course, the phone’s not even connected, so that’s a moot point.
Kudos to the creators for not having Kane drop 20 cents into the phone, which is totally what we would have done ...
- Jen Neale at Puck Daddy2 hrs ago
Here are your Puck Headlines: a glorious collection of news and views collected from the greatest blogosphere in sports and the few, the proud, the mainstream hockey media.
• Unable to grow a beard for the playoffs? Upload a photo to the website and create your own Build-a-Beard just like the Puck Daddy staff. [Beard-a-thon]
• Interesting look at the complex relationship between hockey and hitting. Is Matt Cooke just a byproduct of the system? [Silver Seven Sens]
• Eric Duhatschek believe the NHL is better served when Matt Cooke is no longer a part of it. [Globe & Mail]
• In non-Matt Cooke news out of Minnesota, Mikael Granlund's has gone from freshman funk to sophomore sensation. [Aurora Sentinel]
- Yahoo! Sports Staff at Puck Daddy2 hrs ago
(Ed. Note: As the Stanley Cup Playoffs continue, we're bound to lose some friends along the journey. We've asked for these losers, gone but not forgotten, to be eulogized by the people who knew the teams best: The bloggers who hated them the most. Here is hockey writer Brian Palmer, who inexplicably requested the Tampa Bay Lightning. Again, this was not written by us. Also: This is a roast and you will be offended by it, so don't take it so seriously.)
By Brian Palmer
Ten years ago during the halcyon days of the clutch and grab NHL, the Tampa Bay Lightning captured the imagination of dozens of Central Floridians and convicted felons with a wild run to the Stanley Cup Final.
Led by opportunistic super fan and advanced stats guru Hulk Hogan (A player’s Hogan Rating is calculated by measuring the ratio of shots directed at the net to leg drops, brother), the Bolts beat the Calgary Flames in 7 games to claim the only Stanley Cup in the franchise’s 22-year history.
“HoganClose rating is the number of Suburban Commando references in the third period of a one goal game”Tue, Apr 22Tampa Bay3 - 4MontrealGame Recap
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy3 hrs ago
It's a Thursday 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: Rick Tocchet on the Rangers and Flyers.
• Stunners for Stars and Jackets.
• The Matt Cooke suspension.
• The Selke Trophy
• Tonight's playoff action.
Question of the Day: Who is your Conn Smythe Trophy leader? 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!
Click here to download podcasts from the show each day.Subscribe to the podcast via iTunesor Feedburner.
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy3 hrs ago
The NHL did a smart thing on Wednesday night.
It wasn’t the Matt Cooke suspension, at least in the eyes of those who feel he got off lightly, but it was the timing of that suspension announcement: Well after the East Coast news cycle, well into that night’s action in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Instead of having hockey fans pouring rage all over social media during the day about Cooke’s punishment, the news dropped within hours of two overtime thrillers and a stunning upset in Dallas. Matt Cooke’s suspension was now, at best, the fourth headline of the evening.
That’s not to say fans and media weren’t outraged over the Minnesota Wild forward getting off with an “inadequate” and a “joke” of a suspension. But after predictions ranging from two rounds to the rest of the playoffs, seven games felt … anti-climatic.
- Harrison Mooney at Puck Daddy3 hrs ago
Patrick Kane played the hero for the Chicago Blackhawks in Wednesday night's Game 4 with the St. Louis Blues, scoring the 4-3 overtime winner to send the series back to St. Louis tied at two games apiece. His reward: a media scrum, where he would be asked questions about the goal he just scored.
One such question: "Patrick, was this your first overtime game-winner?"
"I'll have to check that," Kane responds, "I think I've got a couple."
Kane's actually got 4 overtime winners in his career -- three in the postseason, and one in the regular season.
You could expect someone to forget that last one, which was his first one. It came over six years ago, on March 23, 2008, and even though it was the first OT winner of Kane's career, it was a regular-season winner in a year where the Blackhawks didn't make the postseason. That could slip one's mind.
But a few of the others are pretty memorable. Kane's got something of a reputation for scoring big goals.
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy5 hrs ago
Whether or not you’re pulling for the Columbus Blue Jackets in Round 1 vs. the Pittsburgh Penguins, let’s agree on one thing: Seeing this long-suffering fan base finally get a taste of playoff drama, let alone success, is a heartwarming thing.
So maybe it’s that or maybe it’s the unrivaled moment in pro sports that is a Stanley Cup Playoffs overtime goal … whatever it is, this raw audio of the Nationwide Arena crowd after Nick Foligno’s overtime goal gave us the chills:
If nothing else, the goal ensured we get to see and hear these Jackets fans again for Game 6.
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy5 hrs ago
Patrice Bergeron of the Boston Bruins, Anze Kopitar of the Los Angeles Kings and Jonathan Toews of the Chicago Blackhawks are the three finalists for the 2013-14 Frank J. Selke Trophy, which is awarded “to the forward who best excels in the defensive aspects of the game,” the National Hockey League announced on Thursday.
The Professional Hockey Writers Association votes on the award, and these are the top three vote-getters.
Toews won the award last season, while Bergeron won it in 2011-12. This is Kopitar’s first appearance as a finalist, coming in fourth in the voting last season.
Before we break down the finalists, let’s talk about criteria.
The Selke is, for my money, the NHL Award that most lends itself to advanced stats. That’s a good thing, because it’s an award that shouldn’t simply be judged on faceoff wins, plus-minus and shorthanded ice time.
And yet, if you read the descriptions of the finalists, that’s pretty much all that’s mentioned.
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy6 hrs ago
By popular demand, Puck Daddy takes its Conn Smythe Watch from the evening Three Stars to every morning of the postseason. Keep in mind that we factor in the probability of a long playoff run into these choices. Who are the current favorites for playoff MVP? Glad you asked.
1. Tuukka Rask, Boston Bruins
Rask has an 0.67 GAA and a .976 save percentage through three games, which is pretty good if you like dominant goaltenders, we guess. He’s yet to surrender a power-play goal.
2. Patrick Marleau, San Jose Sharks
Marleau has three goals and two assists thus far in the postseason, including the overtime game winner in Game 3. You know, folks, he might actually not be gutless. Just a hunch.
3. Vladimir Tarasenko, St. Louis Blues
The Blues have 11 goals in the postseason and Tarasenko has four of them, to lead all playoff scorers. That includes the game-tying goal with seven seconds left in Game 2.
4. Nathan MacKinnon, Colorado AvalancheThu, Apr 245:00 PM PDTBoston at DetroitPreview Game