- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy27 mins ago
PITTSBURGH – Monday was one of the greatest days of Justin Braun’s life. It was Game 1 of his first Stanley Cup Final, playing for the San Jose Sharks against the Pittsburgh Penguins.
For his family, however, it was one of the saddest days: Tom Lysiak, the former NHL center with the Atlanta Flames and the Chicago Blackhawks, died at 63 after a prolonged battle with leukemia. He was diagnosed three years ago.
As Jessie Lysiak Braun announced:
It saddens me to the core of my being to write this post. My dad lost his battle with Leukemia today and has gone to be with the Lord now
Lysiak was a gritty character in the game, and arguably the finest player in the Flames’ history in Atlanta, making three NHL All-Star Games. Perhaps most infamously, he was suspended for 20 games for tripping Ron Foyt during a game against the Hartford Whalers.
But that was only one side of Lysiak.
- Sean Leahy at Puck Daddy55 mins ago
PITTSBURGH -- Nick Bonino has gotten used to moving in the summertime. Traded from Anaheim to Vancouver to Pittsburgh since 2014, the Penguins forward may finally be able to relax this off-season.
After coming over in a July trade, the 28-year-old Bonino has found a home on one of the postseason's top lines and probably won't have to worry about settling into another new zip code this summer.
“I enjoy the guys, enjoy the team," he said after Game 1. "Organization is first class.”
As the ‘B’ in the popular HBK line, Bonino has found a knack of being in right place at the time, an ability that goes back to a Connecticut state high school title game in 2005.
A magical 2004-05 season for Farmington High School saw Bonino, then a junior, score 68 goals, including the double overtime winner in the state title game. The Indians were down 3-0 at one point, but the future NHLer wouldn’t let his team go down in defeat. He would score twice and assist on another goal during a five-minute span before heading into overtime.
Four years later, Bonino’s magic touch continued in college.
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy1 hr ago
It's a new edition of MAREK VS. WYSHYNSKI, and we're talking about:
- Wysh and Marek are reunited, and it feels so good!
- Breaking down Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final.
- The Patrick Marleau head-shot and no suspension.
- Marek visits the Sutter Family farm.
- 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.]
- Josh Cooper at Puck Daddy1 hr 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 .
• Quite the face paint job for Game 1. [Getty]
• Pittsburgh Penguins forward Nick Bonino scores goals at the right moments: “Bonino previously scored two series-clinching overtime goals. He had one in 2014 for the Ducks against the Stars and one against the Capitals in the second round this postseason.”[ESPN]
• How Bonino was the difference for the Penguins against the San Jose Sharks in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final. [TSN]
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy4 hrs ago
Ken Hitchcock has decided that the rest of his coaching life will be spent signing one-year contracts, like the one he’s agreed on with the St. Louis Blues for the 2016-17 season.
And it turns out that his coaching life has one more year left in it: Hitchcock announced on Tuesday that this will be his last season coaching in the NHL.
"I just feel like I've got this really good year in me. This season has invigorated me like no season before,” he said. "This group of players, their dynamic has changed, and it's really exciting right now."
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy6 hrs ago
Patrick Marleau of the San Jose Sharks will not have a hearing for his hit on Bryan Rust of the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final, and thus will not be suspended by the Department of Player Safety.
Marleau was given a two-minute minor for an illegal check to the head at 4:47 of the third period.
Rust left the game for concussion protocol according to NHL on NBC's Pierre McGuire, then returned to the bench. He played one more shift after that at 8:36 but would not hit the ice again for the rest of the Penguins’ 3-2 win.
"Obviously we lost him for the rest of the period. He's day-to-day with an upper-body injury," Penguins coach Mike Sullivan said. "It's a blindside hit to the head. He gets a penalty. I'm sure the league will look at it."
Marleau, obviously, saw it differently and didn’t think the League would suspend him.
“I don’t think so. I kept my shoulder in and elbow in and everything. I just kinda let him skate into me," he said. “I wanted to keep everything down. Didn’t get too up high.”
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy6 hrs ago
Harnarayan Singh is the play-by-play voice for Hockey Night In Canada Punjabi, which is thought to be the only regular game coverage of the NHL that’s not in English or French. He’s a national treasure for many reasons, chief among them his creative goal calls. For example, when he somehow worked Nikita Kucherov’s name into the song lyrics of a famous Punjabi song during the Tampa Bay Lightning’s run.
Nick Bonino of the Pittsburgh Penguins is also a favorite of Singh’s. In the Eastern Conference semifinals against the Washington Capitals, the Penguins center scored and Singh just shouted “Bonino, Bonino, Bonino, Bonino, Bonino!” in celebration.
In Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final, Bonino had the game-winning goal with just over two minutes left in regulation against the San Jose Sharks. And Singh didn’t disappoint:
- Jen Neale at Puck Daddy13 hrs ago
(Ed. Note: We're changing things up for the Stanley Cup Finals. Instead of writing Three Stars as we normally do on game night, we'll be handing out some post-game awards.)
First Star: Nick Bonino, Pittsburgh Penguins
With 2:33 to go in the third period and the game tied, Bonino netted the game winning goal. To top it off, he gave the interview of the night with Pierre McGuire. It involved the quote, "... sorry for spitting on you." What a good Connecticut boy!
Best Twitter reaction to Bonino's Goal:
STORM INTO THE PARTY LIKE MY NAME IS BONINO
Worst Star: Marc-Edouard Vlasic, San Jose Sharks
Okay, he wasn't the 'worst,' but he did experience a night that more difficult than he'd experienced in the first three playoff series. For the first time in the entire 2016 playoff run, he was a minus-2 in a game (take that stat for what it's worth to you). He was tasked primarily with shutting down Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin. It was a tough night, and something he's probably going to bounce back from in Game 2.
- Sean Leahy at Puck Daddy15 hrs ago
PITTSBURGH – The opening period of Game 1 of the 2016 Stanley Cup Final was absent of any sort of typical feeling-out process between teams in the first game of a series. The Pittsburgh Penguins didn’t wait around to see how the San Jose Sharks would react; they took the game directly to their opponents and it led to a 3-2 victory.
The first period ended with a Penguins shot advantage of 15-4 and a 2-0 lead for the home side thanks to goals 1:02 apart from Bryan Rust and Conor Sheary.
Going right at the Sharks was part of the Penguins’ gameplay. Feeding off a sold out CONSOL Energy Center, Pittsburgh dictated the pace and caught the Sharks flat-footed at times by using their speed.
“It’s Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Finals. There’s always nerves there,” said Sidney Crosby. “I thought we did a good job of just playing and trying to get to our game. It gave us a big boost to get that kind of start.”
- Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy15 hrs ago
PITTSBURGH – The San Jose Sharks had 2,102 regular-season and playoff games to prepare for their first Stanley Cup Final appearance.
And they weren’t ready.
Defenseman Brent Burns called it the Sharks’ “holy [crap] we’re here’ moment. A first period absolutely dominated by the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final. A first period that saw them control puck possession, shot totals and on the scoreboard, building a 2-0 lead.
“We started so slow. I don’t know if it was the long break. It wasn’t pretty in the first period. Nobody can skate. It was slow for us. We played the whole first period in the D-zone, and that’s not out game,” said forward Tomas Hertl.
The Sharks would rally in the second to tie the game, only to lose late in the third period on a Nick Bonino goal, 3-2. But it was the horrific start and getting skated out of the building in the first 20 minutes that was the talk of the dressing room.
Were they nervous?
“Eh, possibly,” said forward Logan Couture. “They came out flying. We looked like we were stuck in mud. Maybe that was it. But this time of year, the games are too big to have a start like that.”