Welcome |Account|Sign Out 
NEW! SIGN IN WITH YOUR SOCIAL PROFILE
OR
Username or EmailPassword
 
2014 NHL Draft
SHARE
(Page 130 of 256)
Latest Headlines

X-Factor: Plekanec's two-way play ideal for Canadiens

Monday, 04.14.2014 / 2:06 AM / Lightning vs Canadiens - 2014 SCP First Round

Arpon Basu - Managing Editor LNH.com

Montreal Canadiens coach Michel Therrien will be tasked with figuring out a way to stop Tampa Bay Lightning scoring machine Steven Stamkos in the Eastern Conference First Round series between the Atlantic Division teams.

Luckily for Therrien, he'll have a one-man solution sitting on his bench.

Canadiens center Tomas Plekanec is one of the NHL's top two-way forwards, as comfortable on the penalty kill as he is on the power play and routinely given the task by Therrien to shut down the opposing team's top offensive threat.

In this series, that assignment will almost assuredly be to check Stamkos, making Plekanec perhaps the most important forward for the Canadiens.


FULL STORY ›EMAIL & SHARE OPTIONS ›|Comment › |Print ›

X-Factor: Nichushkin finds comfort level with Stars

Monday, 04.14.2014 / 2:02 AM / Ducks vs Stars - 2014 SCP First Round

Brian Compton - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

The Dallas Stars are young, fast and dangerous. It begins with their top-line punch of Tyler Seguin and Jamie Benn, but there are more reasons why Dallas is back in the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the first time in six years.

One is right wing Valeri Nichushkin. The 19-year-old was selected with the No. 10 pick at the 2013 NHL Draft and immediately made the jump to hockey's highest level. He did not look out of place, scoring 14 goals and 20 assists. Even more impressive, Nichushkin boasted a plus-21 rating, showing the ability to play well at each end of the ice despite his young age. For most players his age, it takes some time to learn how to play responsibly in the defensive zone.

Now, on an even bigger stage, the Stars will depend on Nichushkin to help them advance past the Western Conference First Round. The skilled wing is likely to skate on the Stars' top line alongside the aforementioned Seguin and Benn, which should give Nichushkin an opportunity to convert on some quality scoring opportunities.

FULL STORY ›EMAIL & SHARE OPTIONS ›|Comment › |Print ›

X-Factor: Rookie MacKinnon could be Avs' go-to guy

Monday, 04.14.2014 / 2:00 AM / Avalanche vs Wild - 2014 SCP First Round

Corey Masisak - NHL.com Staff Writer

The Colorado Avalanche could be without their top forward, the guy who was considered a Hart Trophy candidate early in the season, for the entire first round of the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs.

That would be a debilitating deficiency for nearly any team. So why might the Avalanche be able to survive long enough for Matt Duchene's knee to heal and for him to return to the lineup?

Rookie Nathan MacKinnon is the answer.

MacKinnon has concluded one of the best regular seasons by an 18-year-old in League history, and he might just be getting started. While other teenagers have waned near the end of their first season in the NHL because of the physical and mental grind, MacKinnon has added more responsibility since Duchene (and PA Parenteau) was injured and might be getting stronger.

FULL STORY ›EMAIL & SHARE OPTIONS ›|Comment › |Print ›

Cup contenders Blues, Blackhawks clash early

Monday, 04.14.2014 / 2:00 AM / Blues vs Blackhawks - 2014 SCP First Round

NHL.com

The St. Louis Blues and Chicago Blackhawks have been two of the top teams in the NHL all season, but a late-season slide by both will result in one of them being out of the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs after the first round.

St. Louis and Chicago each finished with at least 107 points, but both finished behind the upstart the Colorado Avalanche in the Central Division. The Blues and Blackhawks will stage the second opening-round series in Stanley Cup Playoffs history where both teams have at least that many points. The San Jose Sharks and Nashville Predators also had at least 107 in 2007.

The Blues were in position to not only win the Central but the Presidents' Trophy as the top team in the NHL as recently as April 3, but six straight losses to end the season left St. Louis in second place in the division. There is uncertainty about what the roster will look like for Game 1, because six regulars were out of the lineup at the end of regular season.

When healthy, the Blues were a defense-first machine that could score a lot of goals when needed. Coach Ken Hitchcock's philosophy combined with the talent and depth general manager Doug Armstrong assembled looked like a team primed to challenge the Blackhawks for division and NHL supremacy.

FULL STORY ›EMAIL & SHARE OPTIONS ›|Comment › |Print ›

Why the Canadiens will win the Stanley Cup

Monday, 04.14.2014 / 2:00 AM / Lightning vs Canadiens - 2014 SCP First Round

Arpon Basu - Managing Editor LNH.com

Perhaps no team filled as many holes in their lineup so well at the NHL Trade Deadline as the Montreal Canadiens, and that is a big reason they will win the 25th Stanley Cup in franchise history this June.

Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin acquired defenseman Mike Weaver from the Florida Panthers the day before the deadline, setting the stage for his real home run a day later with the acquisition of forward Thomas Vanek from the New York Islanders.

The arrival of Vanek gives the Canadiens something they have lacked for years, a top-end first line which can score consistently and provide relief to the team's other lines by attracting the opposition's top defensive stoppers on a nightly basis.

Vanek has combined with Max Pacioretty and David Desharnais to become one of the NHL's most-potent offensive trios, and while losing Alex Galchenyuk for the duration of the first round with a lower-body injury hurts, the other lines have been rendered more effective because of how strong the top line has been.

FULL STORY ›EMAIL & SHARE OPTIONS ›|Comment › |Print ›

Why the Dallas Stars will win the Stanley Cup

Monday, 04.14.2014 / 1:58 AM / Ducks vs Stars - 2014 SCP First Round

Brian Compton - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

The Dallas Stars entered the 2013-14 season with hopes of ending a five-year hiatus from the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

They were led by a new general manager in Jim Nill, who arrived in Dallas after spending the previous 15 seasons as the assistant GM of the Detroit Red Wings. It was there where Nill was able to learn from one of the best minds in the business in general manager Ken Holland.

Nill's first order of business was to find a successful coach, one with a track record and the ability to get the most from his players. Lindy Ruff, who guided the Buffalo Sabres for 15 years and an appearance in the Stanley Cup Final in 1999, became the Stars' new coach.


FULL STORY ›EMAIL & SHARE OPTIONS ›|Comment › |Print ›

X-Factor: Bruins need Smith to regain scoring touch

Monday, 04.14.2014 / 1:52 AM / Bruins vs Red Wings - 2014 SCP First Round

Adam Kimelman - NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

When the Boston Bruins traded Tyler Seguin and Rich Peverley to the Dallas Stars in July, the headline piece coming back was forward Loui Eriksson.

However, the player who made the biggest impact was the one no one expected. And after an up-and-down 2013-14 season, the Bruins still aren't sure what they'll get from Reilly Smith in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. But if the 23-year-old forward can deliver like he did early in the season, it would make the Bruins' quest to return to the Stanley Cup Final a bit easier.

Smith had three goals in 40 games in parts of two seasons with the Stars, so his addition to the Bruins' opening-night roster was a bit of a surprise. He rewarded the team's faith with points in six of his first eight games and played well defensively on a checking line with Chris Kelly.

FULL STORY ›EMAIL & SHARE OPTIONS ›|Comment › |Print ›

Wild have new look going up against Avalanche

Monday, 04.14.2014 / 1:47 AM / Avalanche vs Wild - 2014 SCP First Round

NHL.com

It took until the very last day of the NHL regular season to determine that these teams would meet in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

The Colorado Avalanche became the 2013-14 Central Division champions when the St. Louis Blues lost 3-0 to the Detroit Red Wings on Sunday afternoon. Led by first-year coach Patrick Roy, it was yet another remarkable achievement by the Avalanche this season after they finished with the second-fewest points in the NHL in 2012-13.

The Minnesota Wild have qualified for the playoffs in back-to-back seasons. After signing forward Zach Parise and defenseman Ryan Suter to identical 13-year, $98 million contracts in the summer of 2012, the Wild ended a four-year playoff drought but were eliminated by the Chicago Blackhawks in the opening round in five games.

When the puck drops on Game 1, it will be the first time the Avalanche and Wild have shared the same sheet of ice since Jan. 30. They played five games against each other in a two-month span, with two of the games requiring shootouts. Colorado finished 4-0-1 against Minnesota; rookie Nathan MacKinnon had two game-winning goals.

FULL STORY ›EMAIL & SHARE OPTIONS ›|Comment › |Print ›

Playoffs latest chapter in big year for Stars' Benn

Monday, 04.14.2014 / 1:30 AM / Ducks vs Stars - 2014 SCP First Round

Steve Hunt - NHL.com Correspondent

FRISCO, Texas -- This has already been a landmark season for Jamie Benn.

In September, the Dallas Stars left wing was named captain. In February, Benn represented Canada at the 2014 Sochi Olympics, scoring two goals for the gold-medal winner.

Friday, after the Stars defeated the St. Louis Blues 3-0 at American Airlines Center, Benn learned what it felt like to clinch a spot in the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the first time when Dallas qualified for the postseason, snapping a six-year playoff drought.

"Obviously, proud of the way our team played, excited for what's to come. It's a great opportunity for this group of guys that we have," Benn said. "We know that we can beat any team. We have a confident group."


FULL STORY ›EMAIL & SHARE OPTIONS ›|Comment › |Print ›

Sharks' Vlasic finds spotlight with his effective ways

Monday, 04.14.2014 / 12:59 AM / Sharks vs Kings - 2014 SCP First Round

Eric Gilmore - NHL.com Correspondent

SAN JOSE -- While playing hockey as a young boy in Montreal, San Jose Sharks defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic was different from most of the other kids on the ice, who loved scoring goals and racking up points.

Vlasic produced plenty of points, but what drove him was his absolute hatred for giving up goals.

"I wasn't big on points," Vlasic said after a morning skate at SAP Center. "I did get a lot growing up, but I remember between 7 and 11 or maybe even earlier that that, every time I was on the ice for a goal against I'd cry because I hate being minus. I was big on making sure that didn't happen. It's still big for me."

He doesn't cry as much these days, but not much else has changed in Vlasic's approach to the game. He still despises giving up goals.

FULL STORY ›EMAIL & SHARE OPTIONS ›|Comment › |Print ›
First | Prev | 130 | 131 | 132 | 133 | 134 | 135 | 136-141 | Next | Last
Quote of the Day

When we started our journey we made a commitment to our fans to be relevant and to see the Chicago Blackhawks become the best professional hockey organization. There are not two finer symbols of that than Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane. The commitment we have made to these incredible young men is equal to the commitment they have made to our team, our fans, our entire organization and the city of Chicago.

— Chicago Blackhawks owner Rocky Wirtz on signing Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane to contract extensions