Puck Daddy - NHL

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.

• Couple of cool things scheduled for Friday. First, the newest edition of PuckTracks, our podcast, featuring Evander Kane(notes) of the Atlanta Thrashers. Also, we bring you the unparalleled joys of DoanFace Gallery 2, in honor of Game 5 of the Phoenix Coyotes' series vs. the Detroit Red Wings.

• Facing elimination, the Ottawa Senators will start Pascal Leclaire(notes) in Game 5 against the Pittsburgh Penguins. Oh, did we say "facing?" Apparently it's "craving." [QMI]

• Calling out Joe Thornton(notes) of the San Jose Sharks in the playoffs? How novel. [National Post]

Brian Campbell's(notes) return to the Chicago Blackhawks' lineup will be a game-time decision before Game 4 at the Nashville Predators, but he'll be in the warm-up. [ESPN Chicago]

• How the Predators are stifling the Blackhawks' offense. [Tennessean]

Marc Savard(notes) is traveling to Buffalo with the Boston Bruins and will skate with his teammates on Friday. The way the bracket looks right now, we need to seriously start thinking about the fact that Marc Savard and Matt Cooke(notes) might be on the ice together in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semifinals. [Bruins Blog]

• Through 31 first-round games, 16 penalties have been called for too many men on the ice, or one every two games, and Darren Dreger explains why. [TSN]

• Your guide to creating NHL conspiracy theories. [View From My Seats]

• Gary Bettman's right about Vancouver Canucks conspiracy theories; but as Puck Buddy CC points out, this defense of Mike Murphy's(notes) convoluted explanation of the Sedin "kicked" no-goal is somewhat embarrassing. Turns out he was sleepy: "I think Mr. Murphy was trying to explain at 1 o'clock in the morning as best he could exactly what was going on and if he wasn't as articulate as those looking to parse his words, so be it." [Vancouver Sun]

• Bettman also had a long interview with the LA Times, which asked him when he'll finally leave this job and make the sun shine again in hockey (though not in those words): "It's not something I think about. I do it because I love doing it. I find it stimulating and challenging and I've been doing it now for more than 17 years. I've never thought about it and I don't. I can't even tell you when my contract expires because it's not something I focus on." Sigh. [LA Times]

• Great look at the Phoenix Coyotes' attendance this season, in a ‘if you win it, they will come' sort of way. [Five For Howling]

• NBC goes 1-for-2 on Capitals logos. [Twitpic, via Greg C.]

• Lengthy post on the Chicago Blackhawks, their playoff struggles and reasonable expectations for their success. [Commit 2 The Indian]

• From The Rink begins a series on female hockey fans and their relationship with the game. [FTR]

• How concerned should New York Rangers fans be with the state of Henrik Lundqvist's(notes) knees? [5-Hole]

• It's been long said that Sean Avery's(notes) presence in the Rangers lineup makes them a better team. This season: The Rangers went 29-30-10 with Avery in the line-up and 8-3 without. [NY Rangers Blog]

• Mirtle's feature on Nicklas Lidstrom(notes) has the Detroit Red Wings legend turns 40. [Globe & Mail]

• Lindy Ruff wasn't exactly pleased with the officiating in last night's Buffalo Sabres vs. Boston Bruins game. [Buffalo News]

• Adam Proteau's awards ballot. Mike Green(notes) fifth for the Norris Trophy. [THN]

• In which Henrik Sedin(notes) is attacked by an LA gang. [Thanks to Peter K. for the clip]

• LA Kings blogger rant about Canucks conspiracies. [Pro Sports Blogging]

• The Hockey News presents 10 reasons to plot a conspiracy against the Canucks. Comedy, not exactly their forte. [THN]

• The Edmonton Oilers bid their assistant GM farewell. [Slam Sports]

• Dmitry speaks with TSN about the demise of Moscow Dynamo. [TSN]

• How does the sale of the Texas Rangers affect the sale of the Dallas Stars? [Defending Big D]

• What a sad story: "A psychiatric report says former NHL hockey prospect Daniel Ryder, who was declared unfit to stand trial after he was charged with armed robbery in January, is fighting severe mental illness." [CBC Sports]

• How the Philadelphia Flyers are scrambling their lines after the Carter and Gagne injuries. [Broad Street Hockey]

• Catching up with former NHLer Paul Ranheim. [Canes Country]

• Todd Maternowski's playoff hockey for dummies. [Pegasus News]

• Five reasons why the NHL's TV ratings in the U.S. are on the rise, including some interesting numbers on unique visitors to NHL.com during the playoffs; a 41-percent increase in traffic from Dallas? [Biz of Hockey]

• Finally, The Insomniac Reviewer breaks down the Stanley Cup playoffs, accusing Gary Bettman of fixing the postseason for the Penguins and explaining how the Canucks can beat the Kings, which is by stopping them from scoring. Also: "Maybe this will open you guys's eyes that Brodeur is not a big time goalie anymore ... he has an  88.6 save percentage in the playoffs, which is equivalent to a kid with Down's Syndrome, basically ..." Still better than John Stevens on VERSUS, even with the slight audio syncing issues

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