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(Page 9 of 13)
Stanley Cup Playoffs

Reliving Kings' rampaging run to Cup Final

Wednesday, 05.23.2012 / 3:00 PM / Stanley Cup Playoffs

Adam Kimelman - Deputy Managing Editor


Going back to the beginning of the 2011-12 season, it was common to see knowledgeable hockey people pick the Los Angeles Kings to represent the Western Conference in the Stanley Cup Final.

But no one could have predicted the road they would take to get there.

They suffered through an up-and-down regular season that included the dismissal of defensive-minded coach Terry Murray. His replacement, Darryl Sutter, installed a more up-tempo attack.

The result was a 25-13-11 record under Sutter that got the Kings into the playoff chase, but back-to-back losses to end the regular season left them with the No. 8 seed.


Full Schedule for 2012 Stanley Cup Final

Tuesday, 05.22.2012 / 2:27 PM / Stanley Cup Playoffs

NEW YORK -- The National Hockey League announced today the schedule for the 2012 Stanley Cup Final.

Based on their superior regular-season point totals, either the New York Rangers or the New Jersey Devils will host Games One and Two of the best-of-seven Final, as well as Games Five and Seven. Games Three and Four -- and Game Six, if necessary -- will be hosted by the Western Conference champion Los Angeles Kings.

In the U.S., NBC will broadcast Games One and Two and, if necessary, Games Five through Seven, while NBC Sports Network will telecast Games Three and Four. In Canada, CBC and RDS will cover the entire series. All games also will be carried on Sirius XM Satellite Radio.

NHL Network, the League's 24-hour, all-access pass to the most comprehensive hockey coverage, will feature special programming surrounding the Stanley Cup Final. will continue to provide extensive digital coverage.


Smith, Brown lead MVP race at midway point

Saturday, 05.12.2012 / 11:35 PM / Stanley Cup Playoffs

Dustin Brown
Right Wing - LAK
GOALS: 6 | ASST: 5 | PTS: 11
SOG: 31 | +/-: 9
While there is still plenty of Stanley Cup Playoff hockey to be played this spring -- as many as 21 games remain -- two rounds of an unforgettable spring are already in the record books.

And, with 69 games in the rear-view mirror, there is a significant sample size available with which to analyze the early contenders for the Conn Smythe Trophy, awarded to the most valuable player in the playoffs. That is exactly what we did, asking some of's biggest postseason contributors to pick their MVP at the halfway point of the journey to earn what many believe to be the toughest trophy to win in all of professional sports.


Eight highlights as playoffs reach midway point

Saturday, 05.12.2012 / 11:00 PM / Stanley Cup Playoffs

Dan Rosen - Senior Writer

Four teams left, eight wins to go, but before we go in that direction let's take a look back at the Conference Semifinals.

Here are eight highlights that help define why the Devils, Rangers/Capitals, Kings and Coyotes have made it to the NHL's final four:

Classic Garden Moments

Madison Square Garden has seen its share of amazing sports moments. The end of Game 5 of the Rangers-Capitals series is now among them.

The Rangers won it 3-2 in overtime, but the astonishing part was how.

With 21.3 seconds left in regulation and the Capitals leading 2-1, Joel Ward got his stick up on Carl Hagelin and drew blood. To the box he went for a four-minute double-minor. To the power play the Rangers went with nary a second to waste.

The Rangers were 0-for-3 with zero shots on goal on the power play in Game 5 before Ward slashed Hagelin. They wound up 2-for-5 with four shots on goal in a winning effort.

How did they do it? It started in the faceoff circle.


Flyers expect more out of Bryzgalov in year two

Thursday, 05.10.2012 / 5:32 PM / Stanley Cup Playoffs

Adam Kimelman - Deputy Managing Editor

VOORHEES, N.J. -- Watching Ilya Bryzgalov in his first season with the Philadelphia Flyers, teammate Scott Hartnell was reminded of his first season with the team.

Like Bryzgalov, Hartnell arrived from a non-traditional hockey market and signed a lucrative, long-term contract.

Ilya Bryzgalov
Goalie - PHI
RECORD: 5-6-1
GAA: 3.46 | SVP: 0.887
"Took me 20 games to get my first goal coming here," Hartnell told reporters Thursday. "You got the big contract … I was definitely feeling pressure for sure when I got here."

The second season, he said, was far easier for having gone through the first-year difficulties. On the ice, he responded with the best season of his career to that point.

He's not alone in believing Bryzgalov could travel that same path next season.

"Once you get to know the guys and you feel more comfortable in your house, in your life, all that kind of stuff, definitely you get more confidence as the year goes on," Hartnell said. "Next year he'll come back from Russia in the summer and his house is all set up -- he'll be ready to play."


NHL announces dates, starts times, national TV coverage for Games 1-2 of Conference Final series

Western Conference starts Sunday; East gets under way Monday

Thursday, 05.10.2012 / 2:54 PM / Stanley Cup Playoffs

NEW YORK -- The National Hockey League announced today the dates, start times and national television coverage for Games 1 and 2 of the Conference Final round of the 2012 Stanley Cup Playoffs.

The Western Conference Final opens Sunday, May 13 in Glendale, Arizona, where the Phoenix Coyotes will host the Los Angeles Kings at Arena (8 p.m., ET, NBC Sports Network, TSN, RDS). Game 2 of the series will be played in Glendale on Tuesday, May 15, beginning at 9 p.m., ET.


Spezza optimistic about Senators' future

Saturday, 04.28.2012 / 3:10 PM / Stanley Cup Playoffs

Erin Nicks - Correspondent

OTTAWA – Jason Spezza addressed the media for the final time this season and said that while things didn't go the way the Ottawa Senators had hoped in the playoffs, the future still looks bright.

"We're disappointed," Spezza said about 36 hours after his team's season ended with a 2-1 loss to the New York Rangers in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals. "We felt like we had a really good chance to beat the Rangers and we feel that they're a team that's going to have a lot success going forward in the playoffs, and that could've been us. So it's a little bit tough to look back at this point, but we definitely made a lot of strides as a team and did a lot of good things."

The Senators' No. 1 center credits coach Paul MacLean for providing the team with a true identity.


Alfredsson: 'I don't know' about another season

Saturday, 04.28.2012 / 1:26 PM / Stanley Cup Playoffs

Erin Nicks - Correspondent

OTTAWA, Ont. – A rough-voiced Daniel Alfredsson took his place at the forefront of a media scrum for the final time this season, and still provided no indication as to whether he would return to the Ottawa Senators for a 17th year.

The 39-year-old admitted that he's been missing some time with his four young sons, which has been bothering him, but his boys want to see him continue his career.

"It feels at times when you play a lot, you're tired and you have a lot of practices … when you're home I don't have the energy I would like to play with the kids," Alfredsson said. "I miss a lot of their activities – that's going to play part of it. I'm sure the kids would like to see me play another year, there's no question."


B's seek answers after earlier-than-expected exit

Friday, 04.27.2012 / 4:44 PM / Stanley Cup Playoffs

Matt Kalman - Correspondent

BOSTON -- Two days removed from having their attempt to defend their Stanley Cup championship halted in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals by the Washington Capitals, the Boston Bruins still were trying to diagnose what happened.

The Bruins made just a few roster alterations after winning it all in 2011 and then took several precautions to guard against the wear and tear from the short offseason and the rigors of playing nearly 200 games in 20 months.

Ultimately, though, they weren't able to sustain a level of energy or production high enough to get beyond the first round of playoffs, let alone become the first team since the 1997-98 Detroit Red Wings to repeat as Cup champions.


First round defined by OT, individual performances

Friday, 04.27.2012 / 9:29 AM / Stanley Cup Playoffs

Tal Pinchevsky - Staff Writer

The first week of the postseason should have been indication enough that the opening round of the 2012 Stanley Cup Playoffs was going to be something special. In the end, it took 48 games, a record 16 overtimes, and countless unforgettable moments to make this a first round that fans won't soon forget.

1. More overtime: Could there have been a more appropriate ending for the first round than the double-OT finale between the Devils and Panthers on Thursday? Of the three Game 7s in the first round, two required overtime, and three of the eight first-round series ended with an overtime goal.

In fact, if this postseason is remembered for anything, it might be extra time. The 16 overtime finishes in the first round established a new record for a single playoff round, previously set in 2001. Fortunately, all this overtime didn't keep everyone up too late. Only three of the 16 overtime games required more than one extra period.

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Quote of the Day

We're buyers. We're committed to winning. That's what [owner Vinnie Viola] has said all along and what we've said all along. We want to win. We want to win a championship. We're putting the pieces together, step by step, and we're hopeful that Jaromir can lead these young guys to the promised land. It's a win-win for us.

— Panthers GM Dale Tallon on Jaromir Jagr, who he traded for from the Devils on Thursday
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