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Stanley Cup Playoffs notebook: Thursday, May 7

Friday, 05.08.2015 / 1:55 AM / 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs

NHL Public Relations

BLACKHAWKS ADVANCE AFTER FRANTIC FINISH IN MINNESOTA

Ahead 4-1 in the third period, the Chicago Blackhawks surrendered two goals in 51 seconds – as the teams combined for four goals in the final 6:40 of regulation – but held on to complete a four-game sweep of the Minnesota Wild and become the first team to advance to the conference finals in the 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs.

* The Blackhawks earned their ninth all-time sweep of a best-of-7 series and their first since the 2010 Western Conference Final vs. the San Jose Sharks. They have won all 11 best-of-7 series in which they held a 3-0 lead.

* Chicago completed a four-game sweep on the road for the first time since the 1996 WQF at the Calgary Flames, when Joe Murphy scored the series-clinching goal at 10:02 of the third overtime.

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Lightning miss chance to sweep Canadiens at home

Friday, 05.08.2015 / 12:37 AM / Canadiens vs Lightning - 2015 SCP Second Round

Corey Long - NHL.com Correspondent

TAMPA – The Tampa Bay Lightning had the best home record in the NHL during the regular season, but they were reminded again Thursday that the Stanley Cup Playoffs are different.

The Lightning, who were 32-8-1 at Amalie Arena this season, are 3-5 at home during the past two postseasons and have displayed some lackluster efforts in front of their fans in playoff games.

After a last-second 2-1 win in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Second Round against the Montreal Canadiens on Wednesday, members of the Lightning spoke of playing a full 60 minutes in Game 4 on Thursday and matching the desperation level of their opponents despite leading 3-0 in the best-of-7 series.

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Blackhawks' Rozsival leaves game with leg injury

Thursday, 05.07.2015 / 11:04 PM / Blackhawks vs Wild - 2015 SCP Second Round

NHL.com

Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Michal Rozsival left Game 4 of the Western Conference Second Round against the Minnesota Wild in the second period with a leg injury.

Rozsival was injured with 13:23 remaining after falling awkwardly. He was unable to put weight on his left leg and needed to be helped off the ice and to the locker room.


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Lightning goalie Bishop pulled from Game 4

Thursday, 05.07.2015 / 10:22 PM / Canadiens vs Lightning - 2015 SCP Second Round

NHL.com

Tampa Bay Lightning goaltender Ben Bishop was pulled after allowing three goals to the Montreal Canadiens in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Second Round at Amalie Arena on Thursday.

Bishop was replaced by Andrei Vasilevskiy, who made his Stanley Cup Playoffs debut.

Facing elimination in the best-of-7 series, Montreal took a 3-0 lead 5:08 into the second period and won 6-2.

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Paquette, Drouin in for Lightning; Morrow scratched

Thursday, 05.07.2015 / 7:06 PM / Canadiens vs Lightning - 2015 SCP Second Round

Corey Long - NHL.com Correspondent

TAMPA -- Tampa Bay Lightning forward Cedric Paquette returned to the lineup for Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Second Round against the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday.

Paquette missed Game 3 on Wednesday with an undisclosed injury.

Jonathan Drouin, who replaced Paquette in Game 3, remained in the lineup. Forward Brenden Morrow was a healthy scratch.

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Van Riemsdyk knows rally from 3-0 deficit is possible

Thursday, 05.07.2015 / 5:18 PM / 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs

Jon Lane - NHL.com Staff Writer

Toronto Maple Leafs forward James van Riemsdyk knows taking small steps can lead to big results.

That's the message he's conveying to the Montreal Canadiens and Minnesota Wild, who are each facing 3-0 deficits in the 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs. The Canadiens will attempt to avoid elimination at the Tampa Bay Lightning in Game 4 on Thursday (7 p.m. ET; NBCSN, SN, TVA Sports), followed by the Wild attempting to extend their Western Conference Second Round series against the Chicago Blackhawks (9:30 p.m. ET; NBCSN, SN, TVA Sports).

It was in 2010 during van Riemsdyk's first postseason appearance when his Philadelphia Flyers trailed the Boston Bruins 3-0 in the Eastern Conference Semifinals. Though the outside world declared the Flyers finished before the Bruins won the requisite four games, van Riemsdyk and his teammates had other ideas.

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Ducks refreshed for Game 4 after time away at resort

Thursday, 05.07.2015 / 4:38 PM / Ducks vs Flames - 2015 SCP Second Round

Aaron Vickers - NHL.com Correspondent

BANFF, Alberta -- Here in this Rocky Mountain resort community, the Anaheim Ducks found a bit of a reprieve from hockey, the Calgary Flames and the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

That time away has ended and the Ducks resumed preparing to face the Flames in Game 4 of their Western Conference Second Round series Friday (9:30 p.m. ET; NBCSN, SN, TVA Sports). The Ducks lead the best-of-7 series 2-1.

After a 4-3 overtime loss to the Flames in Game 3 on Tuesday, the Ducks opted to move 78 miles west of Calgary to one of Canada's largest tourist destinations.

"At some point, especially during a long playoff run, you feel like hockey's on your mind all the time, 24/7," Ducks defenseman Cam Fowler said Thursday. "That can be a good thing sometimes, but especially when you have two days in between games, it's nice to take a day to unwind. We still accomplished the things we wanted to as a group and had some great practices. But I think mentally it was good for our group to get away and unwind a little bit. I thought it was a positive experience for everybody."

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Rangers' McDonagh hopes for lift from home crowd

Thursday, 05.07.2015 / 3:32 PM / Rangers vs Capitals - 2015 SCP Second Round

Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

NEW YORK -- New York Rangers captain Ryan McDonagh said he doesn't have any big pregame speech prepared for Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Second Round against the Washington Capitals on Friday (7 p.m. ET; NBCSN, CBC, TVA Sports).

The Rangers trail the Capitals 3-1 in the best-of-7 series.

"It's kind of tough to create words when you're in a situation like we are with one loss ending the season," McDonagh said Thursday. "As far as speaking up and saying things, I feel with the guys in this room there shouldn't be much that needs to be said.

"My job is to be as best prepared that I can be for the game and on the ice because I'm expected to be an impact player and a difference-maker, playing in a lot of situations and different roles, so I need to be as sharp as anyone. I need to continue to make effective plays and give my team and help myself be a part of a win [on Friday]."

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Start times set for Second Round Eastern Conference games scheduled for Saturday and Sunday

Thursday, 05.07.2015 / 3:15 PM / 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs

NHL Public Relations

NEW YORK – The National Hockey League today announced updated start times and national television information for 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs Second Round Eastern Conference games scheduled for Saturday, May 9 and Sunday, May 10.

· The start time for Game 5 (if necessary) of the series between the Montreal Canadiens and Tampa Bay Lightning has been set for 7 p.m. ET in Montreal on Saturday. The game will be seen on CBC, TVA Sports and NBCSN.

· The start time for Game 6 (if necessary) of the series between the New York Rangers and Washington Capitals has been set for 7 p.m. ET in Washington on Sunday. The game will be seen on NBCSN, CBC and TVA Sports.

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Capitals closing in on first conference final in 17 years

Thursday, 05.07.2015 / 3:14 PM / Rangers vs Capitals - 2015 SCP Second Round

Katie Brown - NHL.com Correspondent

ARLINGTON, Va. -- It's been 17 years since the Washington Capitals have advanced to the Eastern Conference Final.

Holding a 3-1 lead against the New York Rangers in the Eastern Conference Second Round, the Capitals can get back with a win in Game 5 on Friday at Madison Square Garden (7 p.m. ET; NBCSN, CBC, TVA Sports).

It would be the third time the Capitals have made it past the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, the first since they went to the Stanley Cup Final in 1998, where they lost to the Detroit Red Wings.

Since 2010, Washington is 3-8 in playoff games when its opponent is facing elimination. But for the Capitals, it's important to not look too far into the future or gaze too deeply into the past.

"We've got to get one more win," Capitals coach Barry Trotz said Thursday. "At the start of the year, we said we wanted to do something special, in our way, with our identity, whatever that might be. I think we've made some really good strides forward. The next stride is to get the next win. That next win is going to be hard to come by."

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