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(Page 112 of 145)
Features

Ramsay: Rangers, Canadiens sending messages

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

For additional insight into the Stanley Cup Playoff series between the New York Rangers and Montreal Canadiens, NHL.com has enlisted the help of former NHL coach Craig Ramsay to break down the action. Ramsay will be checking in throughout the series.

Ramsay played in more than 1,000 NHL games with the Buffalo Sabres before going on to coach the Sabres, Philadelphia Flyers and Atlanta Thrashers. In the 2000 Stanley Cup Playoffs, he led the Flyers to the seventh game of the Eastern Conference Final. Ramsay most recently was an assistant coach with the Florida Panthers.

Two games in six days have afforded the New York Rangers and Montreal Canadiens ample time to engage in the art of mind games while they wait for the Eastern Conference Final to resume.

The Canadiens and Rangers, particularly coaches Michel Therrien and Alain Vigneault, have used the media to deliver messages to each other, the referees and the NHL about players, tactics, hits, injuries and really whatever else they felt like talking about regardless of the question they were asked.

Longtime NHL coach and player Craig Ramsay wasn't surprised to hear that the coaches were using the media as their conduit when he was informed about the background noise in the series on Saturday.

Ramsay said this type of message sending and these mind games typically have a purpose that extends beyond simply attempting to air some grievances in the press.

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Rangers, Canadiens try to win battle of mind games

Arpon Basu - Managing Editor LNH.com

NEW YORK -- They began the moment this Eastern Conference Final between the Montreal Canadiens and New York Rangers was set and continue unabated leading into Game 4 of the series Sunday at Madison Square Garden (8 p.m. ET, NBCSN, CBC, RDS).

The Rangers might lead the best-of-7 series 2-1, but the count on mind games won by either team is not quite as clear.

And it seems nearly as important.

As the Canadiens and Rangers each took to the ice for practice Saturday, what was said in the dressing rooms and on the podium was of far greater interest.

Rangers coach Alain Vigneault was up first, and he did not disappoint.


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Rangers' Carcillo appealing 10-game suspension

NHL.com

NEW YORK -- New York Rangers forward Daniel Carcillo has requested that NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman review his automatic 10-game suspension for violating Rule 40.3 (physical abuse of officials - category 2), the National Hockey League Players' Association announced Saturday.

Carcillo was involved in a physical altercation with linesman Steve Driscoll at 5:51 of the first period of Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Final against the Montreal Canadiens. He was assessed a game misconduct for physical abuse of officials.

Carcillo's suspension was announced on Friday. He had 72 hours to request a review, according to Rule 40.5 (automatic suspension -- process). He will have an in-person appeal with Commissioner Bettman, but no date and time had been set by the time the NHLPA announced the appeal shortly after 5 p.m. ET on Saturday.

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Rangers' Boyle proving himself a playoff performer

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

NEW YORK -- If Brian Boyle had his way he'd be a New York Ranger for life. He's a New Englander-turned-New Yorker, and he's proud of it.

"My heart has always been here," Boyle told NHL.com on Saturday.

Boyle might have to pull his heart out of New York City and lose his allegiance to the Rangers after this season, his fifth in the Big Apple. He can become an unrestricted free agent on July 1 and there has been no indication from the Rangers that they plan to re-sign him.

However, the uncertainty of Boyle's future here has added another layer to his motivation in the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs. He's not close to ready for his Ranger career to end, a fact that has only incentivized him to be a factor in the playoffs.

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Stepan out, Brassard in for Rangers in Game 4

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

NEW YORK -- The New York Rangers expect to have a new look in the middle for Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Final.

Derick Brassard said he's "100 percent" in after missing the past two games with an upper-body injury. However, Derek Stepan had surgery to repair his broken jaw Friday night and coach Alain Vigneault said he is "unlikely" to play Sunday against the Montreal Canadiens (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, CBC, RDS).

The Rangers lead the best-of-7 series 2-1.

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Oil Kings' Lazar makes history at Memorial Cup

Saturday, 05.24.2014 / 12:43 PM / Prospects

Ed Klajman - NHL.com Contributor

LONDON, Ontario – Curtis Lazar has yet to play a game in the NHL, but he secured a spot for himself in the Hockey Hall of Fame by making Memorial Cup history Friday night.

The Ottawa Senators' 2013 first-round draft pick scored the winner for the Edmonton Oil Kings 2:42 into the third overtime of the semifinal against the Val-d'Or Foreurs, bringing to an end the longest game in the 95-year history of the Memorial Cup.

"It's the first overtime goal I've ever scored in junior hockey. I still have to digest it. They took my stick. It's going to the Hall of Fame and that's pretty cool," said the 19-year-old, who was selected 17th overall by Ottawa last June. "We have something special from this team every night and it was my turn tonight. I capitalized on the opportunity."

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Storm seek Memorial Cup title against Oil Kings

Saturday, 05.24.2014 / 12:08 PM / Prospects

Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

The Guelph Storm were the best team in the Ontario Hockey League this season. They're looking to expand that title to the Canadian Hockey League.

Guelph beat the host London Knights 7-2 on Wednesday to finish round-robin play at the 2014 Memorial Cup unbeaten, and in three games outscored its opposition 18-7.

The Storm advanced to the championship game Sunday (4 p.m. ET; NHLN-US, Sportsnet), where they will face the Western Hockey League champion Edmonton Oil Kings (7 p.m. ET; NHLN-US, Sportsnet).

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Kings, Blackhawks know each other well

Shawn Roarke - Director, Editorial

LOS ANGELES -- There are few surprises between the two teams in the 2014 Western Conference Final.

They have played each other too often in too many big games to have secrets from each other. If there were a hidden wrinkle or two introduced by the Los Angeles Kings of the Chicago Blackhawks, it has been observed and game-planned against by the other.

The teams are tied at one win apiece in this best-of-7 series with Game 3 at Staples Center on Saturday (8 p.m. ET, NBC, CBC, RDS).


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Budaj still held in high regard by Montreal teammates

Arpon Basu - Managing Editor LNH.com

NEW YORK -- Montreal Canadiens coach Michel Therrien and his staff knew there would be some politics involved when they decided to turn to rookie goaltender Dustin Tokarski to take over the starting duties for the injured Carey Price prior to Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Final.

One of the most popular players in the Canadiens' dressing room is backup goaltender Peter Budaj, who has remained a backup while Tokarski became the toast of the NHL, at least for now. If someone wanted to coax a member of the Canadiens, just about any one, to start belting out compliments, the easiest way to do it would be to ask him about Budaj.

Therrien knew this, so before telling the hockey world that Tokarski would be his man for the foreseeable future, he had to know his decision would work in the room.


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Kings' offense thriving due to success on faceoffs

Curtis Zupke - NHL.com Correspondent

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. -- Most of the talk after Game 2 of the Western Conference Final has been about the offensive explosion by the Los Angeles Kings, who tied a franchise Stanley Cup Playoff record with five goals in the third period against the Chicago Blackhawks.

What might be overlooked is what helped lead to those goals.

In a series between two puck-possession teams, the Kings simply had the puck more in Game 2 because they won 43 faceoffs to Chicago's 27. That bodes well for Los Angeles going into Game 3 on Saturday night at Staples Center (8 p.m. ET; NBC, CBC, RDS). The best of-7-series is tied 1-1.

The Kings have strength down the middle with Anze Kopitar, who won 15 of 21 faceoffs in Game 2, and Jarret Stoll, who won 14 of 22 primarily against Chicago's Jonathan Toews, Michal Handzus and Marcus Kruger.


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Quote of the Day

There's no discouragement in that room. There's no issues there at all to be honest with you. It's more about, 'Hey, it's opportunities for players.' And if we become that bad of a team because of one player, it's not a real good sign for our hockey club. So this is part of sports. It's part of hockey.

— Bruins coach Claude Julien on the loss of Zdeno Chara to injury
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