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Posted On Thursday, 05.02.2013 / 6:30 PM

By Kevin Woodley -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Canucks-Sharks series blog

Luongo will start Game 2 for regrouping Canucks

VANCOUVER -- Goaltending was back in the Vancouver Canucks' spotlight on Thursday, but they have bigger problems to worry about against the San Jose Sharks: scoring goals, killing penalties and winning faceoffs.

Roberto Luongo confirmed he would be back in net for Game 2 against San Jose on Friday Friday (10 p.m. ET, CNBC, TSN, RDS) after a getting a somewhat surprising start in Wednesday's 3-1 loss to open the Western Conference Quarterfinals against the Sharks.

Injured No.1 Cory Schneider didn't practice Thursday after being on the ice the previous four days, but there was no word whether he suffered a setback. Coach Alain Vigneault continued to label him "day-to-day" with a "body" injury.

"Not too sure what's going on with that," Luongo said of Schneider's health. "It's a playoff series, it's a bit of a mind game with the opposition, and I am just in the groove now to focus as if I am playing every game until I am told otherwise."

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Posted On Thursday, 05.02.2013 / 4:38 PM

By Shawn P. Roarke -  NHL.com Senior Managing Editor /NHL.com - Penguins-Islanders series blog

Capuano likes Islanders' attitude after tough Game 1

PITTSBURGH -- The day after, there were few signs there would be lingering effects from the dispiriting 5-0 loss the New York Islanders suffered less than 16 hours earlier to the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 1 of the best-of-7 Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series.

It was a loose group that showed up Thursday afternoon for a short, but spirited, practice at Consol Energy Center.

"You got to have spirited practices," Islanders coach Jack Capuano said. "We have a good bunch of young guys on our hockey club and that is how we have gone about our business all year. You could see the emotion they had today and the fun they had today. That is what you have to do. There's going to be surges and there's going to be momentum playing against a good team, like I said, but you want to make sure the guys stay relaxed.

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Posted On Thursday, 05.02.2013 / 4:19 PM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - Bruins-Maple Leafs series blog

Carlyle praises people of Boston

BOSTON -- Toronto Maple Leafs coach Randy Carlyle said Thursday he has nothing but great respect for all Bostonians, especially after witnessing how the community came together following the Boston Marathon bombings last month.

It was another telling sign of how coaches and players react when there are certainly more pressing issues in life.

"We're in Boston, they have great hockey fans," Carlyle said. "Boston just went through a very traumatic situation. You can see the pride is in this town and the Bruins are a part of that."

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Posted On Thursday, 05.02.2013 / 3:56 PM

By Curtis Zupke -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Ducks-Red Wings series blog

Bertuzzi in Game 2 lineup for Red Wings

ANAHEIM -- Deep in the recesses of the Detroit Red Wings locker room, a player could be heard playfully singing out Todd Bertuzzi's name, presumably summoning Bertuzzi to the throng of media waiting.

Bertuzzi is ready for his close-up.

Detroit coach Mike Babcock confirmed at the morning skate Thursday that Bertuzzi, 38, will return to the lineup for Game 2 of the Western Conference Quarterfinals against the Anaheim Ducks (10 p.m. ET, NBCSN, TSN, RDS).

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Posted On Thursday, 05.02.2013 / 3:32 PM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - Bruins-Maple Leafs series blog

Kostka suffered broken finger in series opener

BOSTON -- Toronto Maple Leafs coach Randy Carlyle announced Thursday that defenseman Michael Kostka sustained a broken finger in the second period of Game 1 in the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals and is out for Game 2 against the Boston Bruins on Saturday at TD Garden.

Additionally, defenseman Cody Franson (foot bruise) is day-to-day. Forward Phil Kessel, who was missing from Thursday's practice at Walter Brown Arena on the campus of Boston University, was taking a maintenance day.

Though Kessel likely will be in the lineup Saturday, it remains to be seen what changes Carlyle will make on defense with Kostka out and Franson hurting. Carlyle said he will insert either Ryan O'Byrne or Jake Gardiner, or have both players in the lineup.

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Posted On Thursday, 05.02.2013 / 2:42 PM

NHL.com - NHL Live blog

Capitals owner Leonsis guests on Cisco NHL Live

The Stanley Cup Playoffs continue as we get ready for two Game 1s in the Eastern Conference and two Game 2s in the Western Conference on Thursday. Cisco NHL Live with Steve Mears and E.J. Hradek, at 5 p.m. ET on NHL Network, will get you ready for all four matchups.

Washington Capitals chairman and majority owner Ted Leonsis joins us as the Capitals prepare to face the New York Rangers in Game 1. We'll also fire up our Cisco NHL Arena Cam in Montreal with former player and CBC analyst Garry Galley to get a live preview as the Montreal Canadiens open up their series with the Ottawa Senators.

In the West, Anaheim Ducks forward Nick Bonino will talk to us via the Cisco NHL Arena Cam in Anaheim as the Ducks look for a 2-0 series lead over the Detroit Red Wings. We'll also talk to Hall-of-Famer Brett Hull in St. Louis as the St. Louis Blues look to win back-to-back games against the defending Stanley Cup champion Los Angeles Kings.

Don't forget to submit your #AskEJ questions through Twitter via @NHLNetwork or @EJHradek_NHL, and stick around for the shootout as EJ picks all four playoff games being played on Thursday.

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Posted On Thursday, 05.02.2013 / 2:30 PM

By Dan Myers -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Blackhawks-Wild series blog

Pominville still out; no practice for Backstrom, Stoner

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- The Minnesota Wild prepared for Friday's Game 2 of its Western Conference Quarterfinal series against the Chicago Blackhawks down three players.

Goaltender Niklas Backstrom, who suffered a lower-body injury during warmups before Game 1 Tuesday, did not take part in practice Thursday. Wild coach Mike Yeo classified him in the day-to-day category and said he expects Backstrom to make the trip to Chicago.

More likely is that Josh Harding will start again in goal for Game 2 with rookie Darcy Kuemper, recalled from the Houston Aeros of the American Hockey League, backing him up.

Right wing Jason Pominville will not play in Game 2 and won't even make the trip as he continues to recover from an elbow to the head from Los Angeles Kings forward Dustin Brown nine days ago. Yeo also said Pominville is day-to-day, so a best-case scenario for Minnesota would mean he's back in time for Game 3 on Sunday.


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Posted On Thursday, 05.02.2013 / 2:26 PM

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

Bruins know a lot more work needs to be done

BOSTON -- The core of the Boston Bruins has been together long enough to know Game 1 victories do not equal series triumphs.

Last season, the Bruins won Game 1 of their Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series against the Washington Capitals but lost the series in seven games. The Bruins lost Game 1 three times on their way to winning the Stanley Cup in 2011.

So although they didn't skate Thursday, the Bruins know the time off was for rest not reward for winning Game 1 of their first-round series against the Toronto Maple Leafs. As coach Claude Julien said, because there’s nothing celebrate yet.

Game 2 is Saturday at TD Garden (7 p.m. ET, CNBC, CBC, RDS).

"That's how it should be. You can't be looking back," defenseman Johnny Boychuk said. "You can look and learn from what happened, but you have to put it behind you and focus in on this next game because that's all you should be focusing in on. If you're looking back at what's passed or before, you're not worrying about what’s happening now."

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Posted On Thursday, 05.02.2013 / 2:19 PM

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

Bruins' fourth line came up big in Game 1

BOSTON -- The Boston Bruins always have counted on their fourth line, affectionately known as the "Merlot Line," for more than just physicality and energy.

While the trio of Gregory Campbell centering Daniel Paille and Shawn Thornton has been as tough as they come since being put together during the 2010-11 season, all three players have shown flashes of skill worthy of playing above their spot on the depth chart.

Those skills were on display more during the 2012-13 season because Campbell and Paille were forced to play on other lines for stretches because of injuries. But reunited with Thornton for the start of the 2013 Stanley Cup Playoffs, the trio showed its offensive bent Wednesday in setting up the Bruins' first goal in their 4-1 win against the Toronto Maple Leafs in Game 1 of their Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series.

"Obviously when me and [Campbell] were able to play with other players, it just gives you a lot more confidence to do what you have to do," Paille said Thursday. "And when we come back and play together, I think we just realize we can play when we need to and we want to continue to not only play our role and do the simple things, but we want to help out as much as we can like we do."

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Posted On Thursday, 05.02.2013 / 2:15 PM

By Louie Korac -  NHL.com Correspondent /NHL.com - Blues-Kings series blog

Kings swap Fraser in for Richardson in Game 2

ST. LOUIS -- The St. Louis Blues will keep their Game 1 lineup intact for Thursday night. The Los Angeles Kings will make one change at forward with a few tweaks elsewhere for Game 2 of the Western Conference Quarterfinals, as Colin Fraser will replace Brad Richardson.

Here are the projected lineups for the Blues and Kings:


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