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Posted On Thursday, 05.02.2013 / 2:08 PM

By Arpon Basu -  Managing Editor / - Canadiens-Senators series blog

MacLean switches Senators' defense pairings

MONTREAL -- Ottawa Senators coach Paul MacLean made a minor tweak to his defense pairings Thursday in advance of Game 1 of their Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series against the Montreal Canadiens (7 p.m. ET, CNBC, CBC, RDS).

MacLean decided to put together veterans Sergei Gonchar and Chris Phillips, while Jared Cowen and Eric Gryba will form another pairing, leaving the top duo of Erik Karlsson and Marc Methot intact.

"I don't think it's going to [change] much because we've been doing it through the season," Gonchar said. "It's not like it's the first time going into the playoffs. It's not a new thing for us."

Posted On Thursday, 05.02.2013 / 2:05 PM

By Brian Hedger - Correspondent / - Blackhawks-Wild series blog

Emery, Bolland again ruled out for Game 2

CHICAGO -- The Chicago Blackhawks again be without goalie Ray Emery and center Dave Bolland when they face the Minnesota Wild on Friday night at United Center in Game 2 of their Western Conference Quarterfinals series (9:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN, CBC).

Emery and Bolland, each out with a lower-body injury believed to be a groin issue, are making progress but not quite ready to get back to full on-ice work. Bolland didn't skate Thursday, before or during practice, and Emery came out briefly before the session for some work with goaltending coach Stephane Waite. He quickly left before team drills started.

"We're going to rule them out," Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said. "Ray was out there today and [Bolland] didn't skate, but he's getting real close to getting on the ice. [Emery] felt good, too, so it was good progress today."

Posted On Thursday, 05.02.2013 / 1:12 PM

By Dan Rosen - Senior Writer / - Capitals-Rangers series blog

Staal practices, but isn't ready to return yet

WASHINGTON -- The New York Rangers will open the Stanley Cup Playoffs on Thursday against the Washington Capitals without their four injured players.

Defenseman Marc Staal (eye) and forwards Brian Boyle (knee), Ryane Clowe (undisclosed) and Derek Dorsett (clavicle) all will be watching Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals on Thursday at Verizon Center (7:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN, TSN).

Staal, Boyle and Dorsett skated Thursday morning. Clowe did not, though he did travel to Washington with the team.

Staal, who has been out since March 5 when he was struck in the right eye by a deflected shot, said he had another good day Thursday. He said he's getting closer but still doesn't feel ready to play.

"As soon as I'm not second-guessing myself or hesitating and doing things I normally do become automatic is when I can jump into a playoff-type game," Staal said. "You go out there in a playoff game and you're thinking too much, you're going to get yourself in trouble and the team."

Posted On Wednesday, 05.01.2013 / 8:13 PM - 2012-2013 Situation Room blog

TOR @ BOS - 1:10 of the Second Period

At 1:10 of the second period in the Maple Leafs/Bruins game, video review determined that Tyler Seguin's shot hit the crossbar and did not cross the goal line. No Goal Boston.

Posted On Wednesday, 05.01.2013 / 7:53 PM - 2012-2013 Situation Room blog

TOR @ BOS - 19:48 of the First Period

At 19:48 of the first period in the Bruins/Maple Leafs game, video review upheld the referee's call on the ice that Nathan Horton's stick was below the crossbar when he deflected Wade Redden's shot into the net. According to Rule 60.5 "The determining factor is where the puck makes contact with the stick. If the puck makes contact with the stick below the level of the crossbar and enters the goal, this goal shall be allowed." Good Goal Boston.

Posted On Wednesday, 05.01.2013 / 7:16 PM - NHL Live blog

CISCO NHL Live: Ray Bourque

Ray Bourque announced Wednesday that, powered by Bourque’s Celebrities For Charity Foundation will be hosting Ray Bourque’s Game 2 Boston Raffle, a unique fundraiser that will award one lucky winner with an incredible prize and an amazing experience. Proceeds from the raffle will benefit the Celebrities For Charity Foundation whose mission is to unite the goodwill of celebrities with the generosity of their fans to assist people in need.

“I’d like to personally invite fans to come to the great city of Boston to enjoy Game 2 of the Stanley Cup playoffs between the Boston Bruins and the Toronto Maple Leafs. Boston has been through a lot the past few weeks but we are Boston Strong and we want to celebrate all this city has to offer. I am raffling off an expense paid trip to Boston which includes 4 of my personal Premium Club seats. Please log on to and purchase raffle tickets for as little as $10. Through the development of, Celebrities For Charity Foundation has been able to donate over $13 million dollars to worthwhile causes. Our goal is to continue to grow that number and assist causes around the world.” - Raymond Bourque, Hockey Legend; Co-Founder Celebrities For Charity Foundation

Posted On Wednesday, 05.01.2013 / 6:01 PM

By Curtis Zupke - Correspondent / - Ducks-Red Wings series blog

Babcock mum about Detroit lineup changes

ANAHEIM -- The Detroit Red Wings had an off-ice workout Wednesday and coach Mike Babcock said he hadn’t decided if he would make lineup changes for Game 2.

Todd Bertuzzi and Mikael Samuelsson are available but Babcock threw cold water on the idea of bringing the forwards in even though they have Stanley Cup Playoff experience.

"I think it’s great to have veterans that are ready to go," Babock said. "I've just been around the game a long time and understand that when a guy misses training camp … why is he not very good? Because he missed training camp.

"I haven’t spent a whole lot of time feeding my family on hope. It’s know. So sleep on it more tonight and decide."

Posted On Wednesday, 05.01.2013 / 5:55 PM

By Curtis Zupke - Correspondent / - Ducks-Red Wings series blog

Ducks' Bonino thrilled to be back for playoffs

ANAHEIM -- Nick Bonino admits he's a little over-the-top with his goal celebrations.

"I always get a hard time for this, but every goal I score I celebrate like I’ve never scored before," said Bonino, who scored the first Stanley Cup Playoff goal of his career in the Anaheim Ducks' 3-1 victory over the Detroit Red Wings on Tuesday. "Honestly, I get so happy. I guess the playoffs amps it up a little bit. I didn’t really know where to go. I just sort of skated as fast as I could somewhere and I ended up into the glass. I like that corner, apparently."

Posted On Wednesday, 05.01.2013 / 5:51 PM

By Arpon Basu -  Managing Editor / - Canadiens-Senators series blog

Phillips, Michalek to play Game 1 for Senators

MONTREAL -- The Ottawa Senators will have veterans Chris Phillips and Milan Michalek in the lineup when they take on the Montreal Canadiens in Game 1 of their Eastern Conference quarterfinal series, coach Paul MacLean said after practice Wednesday.

Phillips left the final game of the regular season against the Boston Bruins on Sunday with what general manager Bryan Murray later called a tweaked knee. He and Michalek were given the day off from practice Tuesday but were on the ice Wednesday and will be in uniform when the Senators start their series against the Canadiens on Thursday (7 p.m. ET, CBC, RDS, CNBC).

“They’re all green-lighted,” MacLean said.

For the Canadiens, coach Michel Therrien has decided to scratch veterans Jeff Halpern and Colby Armstrong, barring any last-minute changes. Montreal's fourth line will consist of Ryan White at center with Travis Moen and Brandon Prust on the wings.

Here are the lines and defense pairings from Wednesday’s practices:

Posted On Wednesday, 05.01.2013 / 5:47 PM

By Curtis Zupke - Correspondent / - Ducks-Red Wings series blog

Koivu line provides shutdown trio for Ducks

ANAHEIM Anaheim Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau is not typically a matchup coach. He generally prefers to mix and match as needed. But that philosophy changed, at least for Game 1 of the Western Conference Quarterfinals against the Detroit Red Wings on Tuesday. Why?

"Once we found out who we were playing [it changed]," Boudreau said.

Boudreau used his Daniel Winnik-Saku Koivu-Andrew Cogliano line against Henrik Zetterberg, Pavel Datsyuk and Justin Abdelkader, holding Detroit's top trio to four shots through 40 minutes. It finished with 12, but Datsyuk and Zetterberg each were a minus-1 in a 3-1 loss.

Noted Ducks killer Datsyuk had one shot on goal in 20:46 minutes of ice time.

"I feel like when you’re in battles with them, they’re so strong you have to do your best in winning them," Cogliano said. "I feel like every battle I won against those guys last night, it took everything out of me just because they’re so strong. Your best defense is the offense and forecheck. I feel like we did a good job forechecking them."

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Quote of the Day

It's a big milestone for me and I'm happy to help my team with lots of good teammates. It's fun.

— Detroit's Pavel Datsyuk, who on Wednesday became the ninth Russian-born player, and ninth Red Wings player, to score 300 NHL goals
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