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Stanley Cup Final
Posted On Saturday, 05.04.2013 / 6:14 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - Penguins-Islanders series blog

Crosby ready for rough road greeting in Game 3

Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby returns to the site of his last road game, but this time the New York Islanders are a playoff team surrounded by fans who haven't seen a postseason game in person in six years.

After after the overwhelming positive reaction Crosby received when he returned to action in front of the home folks of Pittsburgh in Game 2 on Friday, you can expect an equally loud show of non-support in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals on Sunday (noon, NBC).

"That's the playoffs," Crosby said Saturday after practice at Nassau Coliseum. "I think you expect emotion, you expect the opposing team to feed off the crowd, and I don't think that's any different anywhere. They'll be excited and it'll be up to us to make sure to control that.

"Kind of everything gets magnified a little bit when you're on the road, every hit feels like a big one and every chance seems like a big one. So you have to be able to block all that out and just play the game."

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Posted On Saturday, 05.04.2013 / 4:46 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - Penguins-Islanders series blog

Islanders loose, confident heading into Game 3

The New York Islanders were a loose and confident group Saturday after taking Game 2 of their Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series from the Pittsburgh Penguins the night before.

The Islanders trailed 3-1 but won 4-3 to even the best-of-7 series at one game each.

"We didn't get down. We stuck with it, applied pressure and came back," defenseman Mark Streit said Saturday. "The win is great for our confidence, but it's just one."

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Posted On Saturday, 05.04.2013 / 4:19 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - Penguins-Islanders series blog

Neal skates briefly at Penguins practice

Forward James Neal skated briefly at Pittsburgh Penguins practice Saturday at Nassau Coliseum.

Neal did not play Game 2 of the team's Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series on Friday in Pittsburgh after he sustained a lower-body injury during the second period of Game 1 against the New York Islanders.

According to the Penguins website, Neal "skated a few laps on the ice four roughly 10 minutes in warm-ups."

Defenseman Brooks Orpik, who also missed Game 2, and forward Evgeni Malkin did not practice.

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Posted On Friday, 05.03.2013 / 7:20 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - Canadiens-Senators series blog

Pacioretty, Gionta out of Game 2 for Canadiens

The Montreal Canadiens, already missing center Lars Eller, are without top forwards Max Pacioretty and Brian Gionta due to upper-body injuries Friday in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series against the Ottawa Senators (7 p.m. ET, CNBC, CBC, RDS).

Pacioretty, who led the team in scoring in the regular season with 39 points, was a plus-1 with four shots on goal in 19:59 of ice time in the Canadiens' 4-2 loss in Game 1 Thursday.

Gionta, the Canadiens' captain, was a minus-2 with two shots on goal in 16:09 of ice time in Game 1.

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Posted On Friday, 05.03.2013 / 5:27 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - Canadiens-Senators series blog

Canadiens' Eller released from hospital

The Montreal Canadiens announced Friday that center Lars Eller has been released from the hospital.

Eller was removed from the ice on a stretcher during the second period of Game 1 of the Canadiens' Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series against the Ottawa Senators after he was hit by Ottawa's Eric Gryba.

The team announced Thursday that Eller had been hospitalized after sustaining a concussion, facial fractures, loss of consciousness and had teeth knocked out after the hit and falling face-first to the ice.

Gryba was assessed a five-minute major for interference and a game misconduct for the hit, and has been suspended for two games by the NHL Department of Player Safety.

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Posted On Friday, 05.03.2013 / 3:33 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - 2013 NHL Draft blog

Top draft prospects leading teams in to CHL finals

Six teams are fighting for three spots at the 2013 MasterCard Memorial Cup, hosted this year by the Saskatoon Blades.

Leading those teams is a number of top 2013 NHL Draft prospects.

As NHL Network analyst Craig Button breaks down some of the top stars, among them defenseman Seth Jones of the Portland Winterhawks, NHL Central Scouting's top-rated North American skater, whose team will face Curtis Lazar and the Edmonton Oil Kings in the Western Hockey League final. The series begins Friday in Portland.

In the Ontario Hockey League, the London Knights will have forwards Max Domi and Bo Horvat and defenseman Nikita Zadorov leading them against the Barrie Colts. That series begins Friday in London.

And in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League final, the Halifax Mooseheads boast an incredible array of talent, led by forwards Nathan MacKinnon and Jonathan Drouin, as well as Central Scouting's top-rated North American goaltender, Zachary Fucale. Their opponent in the league final, the Baie-Comeau Drakkar is led by forward Valentin Zykov. The series begins Friday in Halifax.

The Memorial Cup runs May 17-26, with the three league champions joining Saskatoon in the round-robin tournament to crown Canada's top junior team.

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Posted On Friday, 05.03.2013 / 2:18 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - Blackhawks-Wild series blog

Harding to get Game 2 start for Wild

Josh Harding will start in goal for the Minnesota Wild on Friday when they face the Chicago Blackhawks in Game 2 of their Western Conference Quarterfinal series (9:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN, CBC).

Harding stopped 35 of 37 shots in the Wild's 2-1 overtime loss Tuesday. He was pressed into starting duty when Niklas Backstrom sustained a lower-body injury during pregame warm-ups.

There was update on Backstrom's status. If he's unavailable for backup duty, rookie Darcy Kuemper will be the second goalie.

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Posted On Wednesday, 05.01.2013 / 2:55 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - Penguins-Islanders series blog

Video: Game 1 news and notes

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Posted On Wednesday, 05.01.2013 / 1:12 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - Blackhawks-Wild series blog

Wild recall goalie Kuemper

With the status of starting goalie Niklas Backstrom unknown, the Minnesota Wild on Wednesday recalled goaltender Darcy Kuemper from Houston of the American Hockey League.

Backstrom sustained a lower-body injury during warm-ups prior to Game 1 of the Wild's first-round Stanley Cup Playoff series against the Chicago Blackhawks. Josh Harding started and made 37 saves in the Wild's 2-1 loss. The Wild have yet to update Backstrom's injury.

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Posted On Tuesday, 04.30.2013 / 12:31 PM

By NHL.com Staff -  /NHL.com - Blues-Kings series blog

Oshie in, Tarasenko out for Blues

St. Louis Blues coach Ken Hitchcock told reporters forward T.J. Oshie will be in the lineup for Game 1 of his team's Stanley Cup Playoff series Tuesday against the Los Angeles Kings (8 p.m. ET, CBNC, CBC).

Oshie missed the final 15 regular-season games following an injury to his left ankle during a March 28 game against the Kings. He had surgery April 16.

To open a spot, Hitchcock said rookie forward Vladimir Tarasenko will be a healthy scratch.

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Quote of the Day

I look forward to the process, the battle, the pain, the fun, the journey.  It's going to be a long one but it's going to be a lot of fun. If you think there is no pain coming, there is pain coming.

— Mike Babcock, introduced as coach of the Toronto on Thursday, had a warning for fans