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Features

Blackhawks, Wild stayed with starters in goal

Saturday, 05.02.2015 / 2:28 AM / Blackhawks vs Wild - 2015 SCP Second Round

Brian Hedger - NHL.com Correspondent

CHICAGO -- It wasn’t the kind of game the Chicago Blackhawks and Minnesota Wild usually play, and it could have finished with backup goalies in each net the way goals were being scored in the first two periods.

Instead, Blackhawks starter Corey Crawford (30 saves) and Wild counterpart Devan Dubnyk (31 saves) played the whole way in Chicago’s 4-3 victory in Game 1 of their Western Conference Second Round series at United Center on Friday.

Dubnyk allowed three goals on eight shots in the first period, Crawford allowed three on 12 shots in the second, and the game was decided on one that eluded Dubnyk at 19:01 of the second.

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Stanley Cup Playoffs notebook: Friday, May 1

Saturday, 05.02.2015 / 1:45 AM / 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs

NHL Public Relations

KUCHEROV, BISHOP LEAD LIGHTNING OVER CANADIENS IN DOUBLE-OVERTIME

Nikita Kucherov scored at 2:06 of the second overtime and Ben Bishop stopped 43 shots to power the Tampa Bay Lightning to a 1-0 series lead against the Montreal Canadiens.

* Tampa Bay's victory over Montreal in Game 1 continued a trend from the regular season. The Lightning swept five games from the Canadiens in 2014-15, marking the first time in franchise history that Tampa Bay swept its season series with Montreal. The Lightning also became the first team to sweep a season series of at least five games against the Canadiens since the Buffalo Sabres went 8-0-0 in 1983-84.

* Kucherov scored his first career playoff overtime goal, which also stood as his first career game-winner in the postseason. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, at 21 years, 318 days old, Kucherov became the youngest player in franchise history to score an overtime goal in the postseason. The previous youngest Lightning player to score an overtime goal in the playoffs was Vincent Lecavalier, who scored in overtime at 22 years, 359 days old on April 15, 2003, when he scored at the Washington Capitals to win Game 3 of the EQF (4-3 W).

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Lightning shrug off disallowed goal, win Game 1

Saturday, 05.02.2015 / 1:14 AM / Canadiens vs Lightning - 2015 SCP Second Round

Arpon Basu - Managing Editor LNH.com

MONTREAL -- When Nikita Kucherov had an apparent goal waved off during the first overtime of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Second Round against the Montreal Canadiens on Friday, Tampa Bay Lightning coach Jon Cooper was understandably upset.

Luckily for him, the Lightning recovered much quicker than they did a year ago.

"We didn't care. Honestly," Lightning defenseman Anton Stralman said. "The next shift we just went about our business, played as we should. It didn't affect us in a negative way, which is good."

Kucherov scored the winning goal at 2:06 of the second overtime, giving the Lightning a 2-1 victory and a 1-0 lead in this year's best-of-7 series.


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Canadiens say loss 'one of best games we've played'

Saturday, 05.02.2015 / 12:41 AM / Canadiens vs Lightning - 2015 SCP Second Round

Chris Stevenson - NHL.com Correspondent

MONTREAL -- The Montreal Canadiens are down 1-0 in their best-of-7 Eastern Conference Second Round series against the Tampa Bay Lightning, but Montreal defenseman P.K. Subban said he likes what he saw.

The Canadiens lost Game 1, 2-1 in double overtime at Bell Centre on Friday. They outshot the Lightning 44-35, created ample opportunities to win in the first overtime with 13 shots, but couldn't beat Tampa Bay goaltender Ben Bishop.

"This is probably one of the best games we played all year," Subban said. "I thought we did a good job moving the puck out of our zone, defending. I thought we limited their opportunities to carry the puck through the neutral zone with speed. We did a lot of good things today, except win the game.

"That's the difference in the [Stanley Cup Playoffs]. For us right now, if we play that way for the rest of the playoffs, for the rest of the series, I think we're going to be in a good spot."

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Flames coach benched Gaudreau to protect him

Friday, 05.01.2015 / 7:06 PM / Ducks vs Flames - 2015 SCP Second Round

Curtis Zupke - NHL.com Correspondent

ANAHEIM -- Calgary Flames left wing Johnny Gaudreau was polite about being benched in the third period of a 6-1 loss to the Anaheim Ducks in Game 1 of the Western Conference Second Round on Thursday, but his coach spoke for him.

Bob Hartley said after the game that he rested Gaudreau because he thought Anaheim was "taking liberties" with the rookie forward.

Hartley said Friday that Gaudreau didn’t like being a spectator.

"I believe he wasn’t OK with this when I told him early in the third period that he wasn’t playing anymore and I told him why he wasn’t playing," Hartley said. "Johnny wants to be on the ice. As much as he’s not a big-size player, but my job as head coach of the Calgary Flames is to do what’s best for the organization in those times, and what was best last night was to keep him on the bench."

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NHL Foundation finalists: Burns, Giordano, Lundqvist

Friday, 05.01.2015 / 7:00 PM / 2015 NHL Awards

NHL Public Relations

NEW YORK -- Defenseman Brent Burns of the San Jose Sharks, defenseman Mark Giordano of the Calgary Flames and goaltender Henrik Lundqvist of the New York Rangers are the three finalists for the 2014-15 NHL Foundation Player Award, which is presented to "an NHL player who applies the core values of hockey -- commitment, perseverance and teamwork -- to enrich the lives of people in his community," the National Hockey League announced today.

NHL clubs submitted nominations for the NHL Foundation Player Award and the finalists were selected by a judging panel. The NHL Foundation will present $25,000 to the chosen charitable organization of this year's recipient. The winner will be announced Wednesday, June 24, during the 2015 NHL Awards from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.

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Flames to start Ramo in goal for Game 2 at Ducks

Friday, 05.01.2015 / 5:18 PM / Ducks vs Flames - 2015 SCP Second Round

Curtis Zupke - NHL.com Correspondent

ANAHEIM -- Goalie Karri Ramo will start for the Calgary Flames against the Anaheim Ducks in Game 2 of the Western Conference Second Round on Sunday at Honda Center (10 p.m. ET; CNBC, TVA Sports, SN), Flames coach Bob Hartley said Friday.

"It's a great challenge for me and [my] first start," Ramo said. "It's a fun thing. … It's definitely easier, always, to start than [to enter in the] middle of the game. I've played hockey. It's not that long time ago when I started, and it's not the first time I've done it. So I'm sure I'm ready."

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Farrish: Rangers will get more aggressive in Game 2

Friday, 05.01.2015 / 3:41 PM / Rangers vs Capitals - 2015 SCP Second Round

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

For additional insight into the Eastern Conference Second Round series between the Washington Capitals and New York Rangers, NHL.com has enlisted the help of Dave Farrish to break down the action. Farrish will be checking in throughout the series.

Farrish was an assistant coach for the Anaheim Ducks and Toronto Maple Leafs from 2005-14. He won the Stanley Cup with the Ducks in 2007. He also coached 1,027 games in the minor leagues, including the American Hockey League. In addition, Farrish, a former defenseman, played 430 games over seven seasons in the NHL.

Dave Farrish has probably gotten hoarse at points during his career preaching to his teams about playing to the whistle, never stopping, and putting in a full 60-minute effort.

The New York Rangers found out the hard way what happens when you don't do all of that Thursday night in Game 1 of their Eastern Conference Second Round series against the Washington Capitals.

Forward Joel Ward scored with 1.3 seconds remaining because he was wide open in front of the net to receive a pass from Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin. Washington won the game 2-1 and took a 1-0 lead in the best-of-7 series that continues Saturday with Game 2 at Madison Square Garden (12:30 p.m. ET; NBC, SN, TVA Sports).

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Rangers want to clean up mistakes in Game 2

Friday, 05.01.2015 / 2:47 PM / Rangers vs Capitals - 2015 SCP Second Round

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

GREENBURGH, N.Y. -- The devastation the New York Rangers felt after losing on a last-second goal Thursday gave way to a work day Friday that was about learning from their mistakes.

"It's just a loss," center Derek Stepan said. "We're moving on to Game 2."

Joel Ward's goal with 1.3 seconds remaining gave the Washington Capitals a 2-1 win and a 1-0 lead in the best-of-7 Eastern Conference Second Round series.

Game 2 is Saturday at Madison Square Garden (12:30 p.m. ET; NBC, SN, TVA Sports).

"A loss is a loss in the playoffs, and to tell you the truth none of them, whether it be playoffs or regular season, are easy to digest," Rangers coach Alain Vigneault said. "What you've gotta do is you've gotta learn from the games that you play. There's definitely things that we can learn from [Thursday] night."

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Goaltender Matchup: Inside Bishop vs. Price

Friday, 05.01.2015 / 2:00 PM / Canadiens vs Lightning - 2015 SCP Second Round

Kevin Woodley - NHL.com Correspondent

Goaltending plays an integral part in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. NHL.com decided to break down the Eastern Conference Second Round matchup between Carey Price of the Montreal Canadiens and Ben Bishop of the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Much like many goaltending coaches will do before a playoff series, NHL.com correspondent Kevin Woodley, the managing editor of InGoal Magazine, charted every goal scored against each goalie in this matchup this season with the help of a program from Double Blue Sport Analytics. The graphics showing where goals went in and shots were taken from on the ice are nice, but the real value is tracking and analyzing the types of plays that led to them, and whether they reveal strengths, weaknesses and tendencies that can be targeted.

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Quote of the Day

It's a great feeling. I can't be more excited to be a part of a team that I absolutely love.

— Center Derek Stepan after agreeing to terms on a six-year contract with the New York Rangers