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Stanley Cup Final
Posted On Tuesday, 06.04.2013 / 3:23 PM

By Dan Rosen -  NHL.com Senior Writer /NHL.com - Blackhawks-Kings series blog

Sutter expects more from Kings in Game 3

LOS ANGELES -- Los Angeles Kings coach Darryl Sutter decided to take it easy on center Jarret Stoll after Game 2 of the Western Conference Final against the Chicago Blackhawks.

Sutter already knew Stoll was being hard enough on himself after posting a minus-2 rating in the 4-2 loss at United Center, his second game back after missing six in a row with a concussion.

"I think, you know him, he was disappointed in himself more than I was in him, so I think you'll see a much better Jarret [Tuesday night]," Sutter said in advance of Game 3 at Staples Center (9 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TSN, RDS), where the Kings have won 14 games in a row.

"It's not easy," Sutter continued. "He's coming back from a concussion, bottom line. He was pretty much knocked out. To come back in and be 100 percent confident, I don't think it's that easy. He expects a lot of himself and I think he'll do a lot better [Tuesday night]."

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Posted On Tuesday, 06.04.2013 / 3:11 PM

By Matt Kalman -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Penguins-Bruins series blog

Bruins able to manage ice time of top defensemen

BEDFORD, Mass. -- One of the perks of winning the first two games of the Eastern Conference Final comfortably has been the opportunity for the Boston Bruins to limit the ice time of their top defensemen.

After Zdeno Chara averaged more than 29 minutes per game in the first two rounds, the Bruins stalwart has averaged 25 minutes of ice time against the Pittsburgh Penguins. Dennis Seidenberg, Chara's usual partner, hasn't had to log more than 24:38 in this series, right around the amount of time he averaged through six games in the first round against the Toronto Maple Leafs before he was injured.

A rested corps of defensemen not only has the energy during a game to slow down the likes of Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Jarome Iginla, but should also have more in the tank later in the series if things get tougher or if overtime is necessary.

Game 3 is Wednesday at TD Garden (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, CBC, RDS).

"It definitely helps. If you have everybody going, you can do that. So not having to play too many minutes keeps you fresh and ready to go for the following games," Seidenberg said.

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Posted On Tuesday, 06.04.2013 / 2:56 PM

By Chris Adamski -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Penguins-Bruins series blog

Lineup changes coming for Penguins in Game 3

PITTSBURGH -- After the Pittsburgh Penguins were outscored, 9-1, by the Boston Bruins in losing the first two games of Eastern Conference Final at home, Penguins coach Dan Bylsma wasn't going to stand pat when it comes to personnel.

"There's going to be some changes to our lineup and some of our [line combinations]," Bylsma said after practice Tuesday at Consol Energy Center.

A virtual must-win Game 3 is Wednesday at TD Garden in Boston (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, CBC, RDS).

"We have to, as a group and as lines and as D pairings, get back to playing our game," Bylsma said. "We have to get back to playing good defensive hockey, we have to get back to playing well away from the puck -- and that's got to happen throughout our lineup. And I think you'll see some changes in our lines and a few guys being added to the lineup to do so."

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Posted On Tuesday, 06.04.2013 / 11:33 AM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2013 NHL Draft blog

Anthony Brodeur looking forward to hometown draft

Anthony Brodeur knows there's no guarantee he'll be chosen at the 2013 NHL Draft at Prudential Center in Newark, N.J., on June 30.

It would be a surreal moment for Brodeur to hear his name announced in the state where his dad, New Jersey Devils goaltender Martin Brodeur, has become a legend. Anthony Brodeur, who turns 18 on June 8, just completed his senior season at Shattuck-St. Mary's Prep in Faribault, Minn., and is eligible for the draft for the first time.

Anthony Brodeur

He went 21-5-2 with a 2.48 goals-against average, .923 save percentage and team-leading five shutouts in 28 games this season. He also was credited with four assists.

Anthony Brodeur was asked if he feels there's any similarity between him and his 41-year-old father, who was chossen in the first round (No. 20) of the 1990 draft by the Devils.

"I think we have the same style," Brodeur told NHL.com. "I look a lot like him when I am in net, but I might play a little more butterfly than he does. I think the most common thing for me is how we're both pretty composed in net. I've worked on that a lot lately and it has helped my game a ton.

"I am starting to work on playing the puck more and more and hope to one day be as good as he is with that."

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Posted On Monday, 06.03.2013 / 4:06 PM

By Barry Melrose -  NHL Network Analyst /NHL.com - Melrose Minute

Melrose Minute: Pens Identity Stolen

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Posted On Monday, 06.03.2013 / 4:05 PM

By Barry Melrose -  NHL Network Analyst /NHL.com - Melrose Minute

Melrose: Kings Live or Die with Quick

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Posted On Monday, 06.03.2013 / 3:18 PM

By Arpon Basu -  Managing Editor LNH.com /NHL.com - Penguins-Bruins series blog

Bruins aware of opportunity in front of them

PITTSBURGH -- It would be easy for the Boston Bruins to say they have already accomplished what they came to Pittsburgh to do, and that is why coach Claude Julien wants to make sure his players see Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Final as an opportunity that should not be squandered.

After an impressive 3-0 win in Game 1, the Bruins have a chance to head back home up 2-0 in the series if they manage to win Game 2 on Monday night (8 p.m. ET, NBCSN, CBC, RDS).

"It's hard to win games in the playoffs, it gets harder as you move forward," Julien said. "So every time you get a chance you have to make the most of it and don't waste that opportunity by saying at least we won one out of two. You have to go out there every game and challenge and want to win that game, because nothing guarantees you those home wins. And I think Pittsburgh knows that."

The Bruins are hoping they figured something out in the second intermission of Saturday's game that can carry over to Game 2. The Bruins were outshot 22-17 and gave up a number of high quality scoring chances to the Penguins over the first two periods of Game 1, but they largely carried the play in the third period to not only protect a 1-0 lead, but build on it with two goals.


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Posted On Monday, 06.03.2013 / 2:48 PM

By Arpon Basu -  Managing Editor LNH.com /NHL.com - Penguins-Bruins series blog

Ference's return brings stability to Bruins' top-four

PITTSBURGH -- Defenseman Andrew Ference's presence in the Boston Bruins lineup for Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Final was akin to a child reaching for a favorite blanket -- it created comfort.

The Bruins' top-four on defense of Zdeno Chara with Dennis Seidenberg and Ference with Johnny Boychuk has remained intact over the last three years, including Boston's Stanley Cup win in 2011. That familiarity is especially important when facing a team with two dangerous top lines like the Pittsburgh Penguins have, and it should serve the Bruins well again in Game 2 on Monday night (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, CBC, RDS).

"It's just that we've played together for a while and it's just being comfortable with each other," Boychuk said Monday. "Not that I'm not comfortable with Matt [Bartkowski], because we played well together as well. But we've played together, me and [Ference], for the last three or four playoffs, so we kind of know what to expect from each other."

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Posted On Monday, 06.03.2013 / 2:10 PM

By Barry Melrose -  NHL Network Analyst /NHL.com - Melrose Minute

Melrose: Blackhawks are back in a groove again

What a difference a week makes. Last time I wrote, the Chicago Blackhawks were on the brink of elimination against the Detroit Red Wings and now they're just two wins away from ousting the defending champion Los Angeles Kings and returning to the Stanley Cup Final. The conference finals have tons of storylines, but with two games done out West and Game 2 coming Monday night in the East, this is what I've noticed so far.

THE BLACKHAWKS ARE BACK

Chicago didn't look quite the same over the first two rounds of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, but after two wins to start the Western Conference Final against Los Angeles, the Blackhawks are starting to look like the team that dominated in the first half of the season. They've won the last two games against the best defensive team in the Western Conference and they did it with a remarkable amount of composure. Chicago outplayed L.A. badly in the first period and still ended up trailing when the Kings scored first. That could have easily escalated in frustration, but the Blackhawks continued doing what they do. They didn't panic. They attacked Jonathan Quick, they looked faster than L.A., they were much more in control and they just kept shooting and going to the net and they got rewarded.

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Posted On Monday, 06.03.2013 / 1:04 PM

By Chris Adamski -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Penguins-Bruins series blog

Penguins show no signs of panic, lineup changes

PITTSBURGH -- Throughout the Pittsburgh Penguins' dressing room, a common theme was repeated: Stay the course, play the way we did over the first two periods of Game 1, things will be OK.

Be it a subtle message to his players along those lines or a simple evaluation leading to the same result, coach Dan Bylsma appears to agree when it comes to the personnel.

Judging by the line combinations and defense pairings during the morning skate, Pittsburgh will go with the same lineup it used for Saturday's Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Final when it takes the ice for Game 2 against the Boston Bruins 8 p.m. Monday at Consol Energy Center.

"I don't think our mindset changes; I think we want more of the same," veteran forward Craig Adams said. "There's just some things we can do better, and we'll try to do those better."


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Quote of the Day

I always feel the pressure to produce offensively. It's disappointing and frustrating when you can't help out your team the way you're supposed to.

— Rangers forward Rick Nash on scoring twice in a 5-1 Game 4 victory against the Lightning on Friday