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(Page 74 of 178)
Features

Duchene returns, sparks Avalanche's power play

Tuesday, 04.29.2014 / 1:50 AM / Avalanche vs Wild - 2014 SCP First Round

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Even though Colorado Avalanche coach Patrick Roy played coy with the media Monday morning by not offering a definitive answer one way or another on center Matt Duchene's availability, there was no question on the player's part.

Duchene knew all along he would play in Game 6 of the Western Conference First Round series against the Minnesota Wild at Xcel Energy Center.

"I made the call [Sunday] that I was ready," Duchene said following Colorado's 5-2 loss to the Minnesota Wild that evened the best-of-7 series at 3-3.

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Five reasons why the Penguins advanced

Tuesday, 04.29.2014 / 1:39 AM / Penguins vs Blue Jackets - 2014 SCP First Round

Shawn P. Roarke - NHL.com Senior Managing Editor

It wasn't easy and it was rarely pretty, but the Pittsburgh Penguins found a way to subdue the Columbus Blue Jackets in the Eastern Conference First Round.

In a series eerily similar to the first-round last season against the New York Islanders, the Penguins played some run-and-gun hockey with the seventh-seeded Blue Jackets before holding on to a 4-3 victory in Game 6 to win the series, 4-2.

In the games Pittsburgh lost, Game 2 and Game 4, the Penguins allowed the Blue Jackets to erase deficits of two and three goals, respectively. In all, the Penguins allowed 18 goals in the six games, a defensive showing that must be improved as they advance to even stiffer competition.

Yet, despite the tight nature of the games (Pittsburgh finished with three more goals than Columbus), the Penguins did advance and will play the winner of the series between the New York Rangers and the Philadelphia Flyers, which the Rangers lead 3-2.

Here are five reasons the Penguins are moving on to the second round for the fifth time in the past eight years:

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Start times set for Round 1 games on Wednesday

Tuesday, 04.29.2014 / 1:07 AM / Stanley Cup Playoffs

NHL.com

NEW YORK -- The National Hockey League today announced updated start time information for the First Round of the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs.

The starting time for a potential Game 7 of the series between the New York Rangers and Philadelphia Flyers, if necessary, has been set for 7 p.m. ET on Wednesday, April 30, in New York. In the U.S., the game would be seen on NBCSN, MSG and CSN Philadelphia. In Canada, the game would be televised on TSN and RDSI.

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Blue Jackets can't overcome slow start

Tuesday, 04.29.2014 / 12:35 AM / Penguins vs Blue Jackets - 2014 SCP First Round

Craig Merz - NHL.com Correspondent

COLUMBUS -- Truth be told, it was the beginning of Game 6 that proved to be the demise of the Columbus Blue Jackets in a 4-3 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins at Nationwide Arena on Wednesday night that ended their season.

Needing to tie the Eastern Conference First Round best-of-seven series at 3-3, the Blue Jackets promised a better effort than Game 5 on Saturday when they lost 3-1 at Pittsburgh and were outshot 51-24.

Playing before another energized crowd in Columbus, the Blue Jackets did not deliver in the opening 20 minutes. Evgeni Malkin scored twice and the Penguins grabbed a 2-0 lead that would rise to 4-0 on a goal by Brandon Sutter and another by Malkin.

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Penguins' Malkin ends drought with hat trick

Monday, 04.28.2014 / 11:08 PM / Penguins vs Blue Jackets - 2014 SCP First Round

Wes Crosby - NHL.com Correspondent

COLUMBUS -- Evgeni Malkin delivered when the Pittsburgh Penguins needed him most.

Malkin earned his second career hat trick in the Stanley Cup Playoffs in Pittsburgh's 4-3, series-clinching win against the Columbus Blue Jackets in the Eastern Conference First Round at Nationwide Arena on Monday night. The 2009 Conn Smythe Trophy winner was criticized for his lack of production through the first five games of the series, which included a shot-less performance in a 4-3 overtime loss in Game 4.

"Another hat-trick performance from Malkin when you need it," Penguins coach Dan Bylsma said.

Malkin joined Mario Lemieux (3) and Sidney Crosby (2) as the players in franchise history to record multiple postseason hat tricks. Malkin's first playoff hat trick came in Game 2 of Pittsburgh's sweep of the Carolina Hurricanes in the 2009 Eastern Conference Final.

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Canadiens may be as deep up front as Bruins

Monday, 04.28.2014 / 6:50 PM / Bruins vs Canadiens - 2014 SCP Second Round

Arpon Basu - Managing Editor LNH.com

BROSSARD, Quebec -- The Boston Bruins have long been the gold standard when it comes to the depth of their forwards, something that has been at the root of much of their success in the Stanley Cup Playoffs in recent years.

Several teams have attempted to replicate that blueprint. But in order to do so, it's imperative to find a way to replicate the volume of talent at the forward position the Bruins have boasted for many years.

The Montreal Canadiens believe they might have done just that.

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Five reasons why the Stars were eliminated

Monday, 04.28.2014 / 6:23 PM / Ducks vs Stars - 2014 SCP First Round

Corey Masisak - NHL.com Staff Writer

So much has changed about the future of the Dallas Stars in the past 12 months then when the first round of the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs is complete, it will be hard to argue that members of any of the other seven eliminated franchises will feel better about how this season went.

That doesn't mean there isn't disappointment in Texas after the Anaheim Ducks defeated the Stars in six games in a Western Conference First Round series. Though the Stars had the fewest points of any playoff team, they played well enough against the Ducks to spring the upset and advance.

There were lessons to be learned from this experience, and a future with Jamie Benn, Tyler Seguin and Valeri Nichushkin at the core of a contending team with general manager Jim Nill and coach Lindy Ruff in charge is one people in Dallas should be excited about.

Here are five reasons fans of the Stars are focusing on that future instead of a second-round opponent:

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Collision course pits Bruins vs. Canadiens again

Monday, 04.28.2014 / 5:23 PM / Bruins vs Canadiens - 2014 SCP Second Round

Shawn P. Roarke and Arpon Basu - NHL.com

The NHL's biggest postseason rivalry is back for another installment.

The Boston Bruins and Montreal Canadiens will meet for the 34th time in Stanley Cup Playoff history when they get together in an Eastern Conference Second Round series. The Canadiens have been off since completing a first-round sweep of the Tampa Bay Lightning on April 22; the Bruins held up their end by completing a five-game blitz of the Detroit Red Wings on Saturday.

Though the Bruins won the Presidents' Trophy as the NHL's top team during the regular season, they lost three of four games against the Canadiens, including two played in Boston (one in regulation, one in a shootout). The Canadiens have won six of the past seven games and are 351-264-103-7 in the regular season against the Bruins.

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Five reasons why the Anaheim Ducks advanced

Monday, 04.28.2014 / 4:42 PM / Ducks vs Stars - 2014 SCP First Round

Corey Masisak - NHL.com Staff Writer

Narratives can change pretty quickly during the Stanley Cup Playoffs, and the Anaheim Ducks were a strong example of that in the past few days.

The Ducks were a couple of minutes away Sunday night from losing for the third time in four games to the Dallas Stars in their Western Conference First Round series, and facing a Game 7 at Honda Center in the opening round for the second straight season.

Instead, Anaheim forged an incredible comeback, scoring twice in the final 130 seconds of regulation to force overtime and again at 2:47 of the extra period in Game 6 to finish off the Stars and advance to the second round of the postseason for the first time since 2009.

Anaheim will face one of its California rivals in the Western Conference Second Round. The Ducks haven't advanced past the second round since winning the Stanley Cup in 2007, and Bruce Boudreau has yet to do so in his first six seasons as an NHL coach.

Here are five reasons they will have a chance to do so:

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Canadiens' Vanek expects Bruins to make life difficult

Monday, 04.28.2014 / 4:32 PM / Bruins vs Canadiens - 2014 SCP Second Round

James Murphy - NHL.com Correspondent

BROSSARD, Quebec -- Montreal Canadiens forward Thomas Vanek has earned the reputation as a thorn in the side of the Boston Bruins since he entered the NHL in 2005-06 with the Buffalo Sabres.

Vanek has 30 goals and 62 points in 55 career games against the Bruins. He had just one goal in the Canadiens' sweep of the Tampa Bay Lightning in the Eastern Conference First Round, and knows he will need to find that scoring magic again when the Canadiens and Bruins start a best-of-7 series in the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

"In the first round I don't think our line played good," Vanek said of himself, Max Pacioretty and David Desharnais. "In Games 1, 2 and 3, I thought we created a lot of chances but just didn't connect. Even in Game 1, I think if [Pacioretty] scores in overtime and doesn't hit the post there's a different vibe for us. So we have to do a better job in this series to kind of just stick with it because we know our chances will be limited."

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Quote of the Day

I think I'm lucky to be here and you definitely don't take very many things for granted, if you take anything for granted. I definitely put my family and my wife and my close family in perspective, that they're the most important thing in the world. I want to do whatever I can to play hockey, but like I said, under the right circumstances.

— Stars forward Rich Peverley to "The Musers" radio show on The Ticket 1310 AM in Dallas