When Marc-Andre Fleury takes his seat on the Pittsburgh Penguins’ bench Monday night for Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final, it will likely mark the beginning of the end of the goaltender’s time with the organization. With the expansion draft on the horizon, Penguins general manager Jim Rutherford can only protect one of his netminders.
With the Los Angeles Kings cleaning house this summer, firing longtime GM Dean Lombardi and coach Darryl Sutter, there are likely to be some personnel and lineup changes going into next season. Rob Blake and John Stevens are looking to put their stamp on the team and steer them into a return to the playoffs. One of the players who may be a beneficiary of the coaching change is winger Marian Gaborik. Gaborik has been the subject of buyout speculation due to his long term contract and underwhelming numbers but Blake has already said that he will not be bought out this summer and the team will commit to him for at least another year. Gaborik broke into the NHL in 2000 as a highly-touted prospect
Peter Laviolette had some inspiring words for his team. NBC didn’t even make it to puck drop before a curse word was aired on live television. Before cutting away to commercial, NBC aired clips from Penguins head coach Mike Sullivan and Predators head coach Peter Laviolette.