- Josh Cooper at Puck Daddy27 mins ago
Finn Dowling calls the black cat that ran onto the ice at SAP Center during warmups before Game 1 between the Nashville Predators and San Jose Sharks the ‘world’s luckiest cat.’
This was meant in two respects. For one the 2-3 month old kittenthat inexplicably entered the building was saved by the Sharks organization and turned over to Humane Society Silicon Valley where Dowling works. But also, the cat turned into the team’s good luck charm in their 5-2 comeback win over Nashville.
“What sort of a cat is she? She’s the sort of cat that helps hockey teams win games,” Dowling said.
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy35 mins ago
Throughout this controversial season for the Chicago Blackhawks, there’s been talk about fans who may have left the fold and talk of that talk being poppycock public posturing.
So it was interesting to see Monday’s farewell note from Hockeenight, one of the most popular and hilarious Blackhawks fan blogs. (And a collection of writers who have previously worked on our Eulogys.) Here’s what they wrote:
The last year brought rape allegations, revenge porn, homophobic slurs, and countless dudebros defending the indefensible simply because the perpetrators happened to play sports for a team they supported. What had once been a pleasure became a labor.
And this year had a “staying together for the kids” feel to it. We didn’t recap at all, until we saw where we could provide a little levity to some friends going through a tough time, but I’m sure you’ll agree that our hearts clearly weren’t in it. And you guys deserve better.
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy4 hrs ago
One of John Tortorella’s favorite conspiracy theories is that the Pittsburgh Penguins get preferential treatment from the NHL when it comes to suspensions. Like, for example, when then-Penguins defenseman Brooks Orpik laid out Marian Gaborik in 2012 with a knee-on-knee hit.
“I wonder what would happen if we did that to their two whining stars over there. I wonder what would happen?” said Tortorella. “It’s one of the most arrogant organizations in the League. They whine about this stuff all the time, and look what happens. It’s ridiculous. But they’ll whine about something else over there, won’t they? Starting with their two [expletive] stars.”
Fast forward to the 2016 Stanley Cup Playoffs, and it’s another coach slyly making that claim.
Ironically, he’s the guy currently coaching Brooks Orpik.Mon, May 28:00 PM EDTWashington at PittsburghPreview Game
- Sean Leahy at Puck Daddy4 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. Have a link you want to submit? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
• Today marks the 49th anniversary since Toronto’s last Stanley Cup championship.
• The Washington Capitals were outplayed in the opening two games by the Pittsburgh Penguins. What’s in store for Game 3? [Washington Post]
• Through two games, Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin have been quiet. [Pens Initiative]
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy5 hrs ago
Pittsburgh Penguins coach Mike Sullivan said that defenseman Olli Maatta, last seen struggling to leave the ice after Brooks Orpik’s head shot, will not play in Game 3 of their Eastern Conference semifinal series.
Sullivan didn’t say if it’ll be Derrick Pouliot or Justin Schultz replacing him in the lineup, but the Penguins told the Tribune-Review they’re ready:
“We've been working hard, the guys that haven't been playing,” Schultz said after Sunday's practice at UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex in Cranberry. “Obviously, it's different being in a game situation, but you have to get ready. It's playoff time. If I have to go, I'll be ready.”
“We have a lot of depth,” defenseman Kris Letang said. “We have two guys who are practicing every day in Schultz and Pouliot. They're pretty good players. Whoever comes in, I'm pretty sure they'll accomplish a great job and help our team to succeed.”
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy6 hrs ago
Dan Boyle may never play another NHL game, as the New York Rangers defenseman strongly hinted he’s headed for retirement. But he went out with a bang: Calling out and chasing away New York Post writer Larry Brooks, and to a lesser extent Brett Cyrgalis of the Post, in front of a media scrum on Rangers breakup day.
Sample prose, from that rant: “At least I’m leaving here with the respect of my teammates,” said Boyle. "Instead of [expletive] someone like you, who tries to bury somebody. That's all you do. It's not a critique. I'm telling you I don't want you here. I have no respect for you. I want you to get the [expletive] out.”
Boyle hasn’t said much about the incident, but appeared on SportsTalk NY on WLIE 540 a.m. on Sunday and addressed it at length.
He said it wasn’t the first time he and Brooks tangled. “They were personal, for reasons I don’t need to get into. But it was deserved,” said Boyle.
- Ryan Lambert at Puck Daddy8 hrs ago
(Hello, this is a feature that will run through the entire season and aims to recap the weekend’s events and boils those events down to one admittedly superficial fact or stupid opinion about each team. Feel free to complain about it.)
That Jonathan Drouin has stepped up to become a big contributor for the Tampa Bay Lightning in this postseason should only be surprising because of how the team treated him this season.
The story's been told over and over again, but Drouin had difficulty gaining the trust of coach Jon Cooper for reasons still unclear. Things got so bad that he requested a trade early in the season, and ended up being sent down to the AHL about two months later. Then there was the failure to report drama, and then the dominant performances with Syracuse — 11-2-13 and 55(!) shots on goal in 17 games — before he was recalled late in the season.
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy9 hrs ago
It's a Monday edition of MAREK VS. WYSHYNSKI, and we're talking about:
- Down Goes Brown (a.k.a. Sean McIndoe) joins us to celebrate the inexplicable good luck of the Toronto Maple Leafs in winning the NHL Draft Lottery.
- Full predictions on the lottery picks.
- Washington Capitals vs. Pittsburgh Penguins.
- Tampa Bay Lightning vs. New York Islanders.
- Those Western Conference teams.
- News and notes from around the NHL.
The Marek vs. Wyshynski Podcast is hosted by Jeff Marek of Sportsnet and Greg Wyshynski of Yahoo Sports, breaking down the NHL on a (somewhat) daily basis with their particular brand of whimsy and with guest voices from around the hockey world. MvsW streams live while its being recorded: LISTEN HERE! [And if that doesn't work, try here.]
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy17 hrs ago
No. 1 Star: David Backes, St. Louis Blues
Backes made a nifty play on his OT game-winner, leaping over an Alex Steen shot and then tucking home the rebound. It’s his third of the playoffs, and gave the Blues a 4-3 win.
No. 2 Star: Joe Pavelski, San Jose Sharks
The Sharks captain scored a rebound goal with 2:40 left in the third period as San Jose defeated the Nashville Predators, 3-2. He also assisted on Joe Thornton’s empty netter.
No. 3 Star: Cody Eakins, Dallas Stars
The Dallas center assisted on all three of their goals, including some hard work in front on Jamie Benn’s game-tying goal in the third.
Honorable Mention: Benn had a goal and an assist and leads the playoffs in points. … Troy Brouwer had a goal and an assist. … Joel Edmundson scored his first playoff goal. … Ryan Johansen has goals in two straight games.
Did You Know? Dallas outshot St. Louis 13-2 in the third period and 29-17 in regulation.
Dishonorable Mention: Kari Lehtonen was pulled after giving up three goals in the first period. … Filip Forsberg was a minus-2. … Vladimir Tarasenko was held scoreless again and was a minus-2.
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy18 hrs ago
Joe Pavelski scored the go-ahead goal with 2:40 left in the third period, as the San Jose Sharks defeated the Nashville Predators 3-2 in Game 2 of the Western Conference semifinals.
What we learned in two games of this series: The Predators can’t close and the Sharks never say die.
Game 1 saw the Predators carry a 1-0 lead into the third period. They were 26-1-4 in the regular season when leading after two periods. They were 3-0 in the playoffs.
Game 1 result: 5-2 win, as the Sharks scored three goals in a 13:03 stretch to take a 3-1 lead. The Predators cut it to 3-2; the Sharks responded 20 seconds later and cruised to victory.
Game 2 saw the Predators turn the tables and tie the game at 1-1 as Mattias Ekholm scored at 12:56 of the third period. But Pavelski scored at 17:20, Joe Thornton scored into an empty net and the Sharks hung on despite a late goal by Ryan Johansen, his second of the series.
Here’s the Pavelski goal:
Thornton, arguably the best passer of his generation, set it up with that cross-ice pass to Matt Nieto. His high shot handcuffed Pekka Rinne, and allowed Pavelski to tap home the rebound for the lead.