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2011 Stanley Cup Final - Canucks v Bruins

Canucks, Bruins relish opportunity to play for Cup

Tuesday, 05.31.2011 / 9:36 PM / 2011 Stanley Cup Final - Canucks v Bruins

Dan Rosen - Senior Writer

VANCOUVER -- Alex Burrows looked around the 100 level at Rogers Arena at the circus of swarming media and players sitting in front of microphones. He had to be thinking, 'Oh, so this is what the Stanley Cup Final is like.'
"This is pretty cool," Burrows quipped. "There are a lot of people and it obviously makes you realize you are in the Stanley Cup Final, but at the same time I'm still going to go grab my groceries today and go for a walk."
Wait, what?
Groceries? A walk? That's what Burrows is going to do 24 hours before he plays Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final?

Still a Bruin, Neely hopes to bring Cup to Boston

Tuesday, 05.31.2011 / 9:20 PM / 2011 Stanley Cup Final - Canucks v Bruins

Shawn P. Roarke - Senior Managing Editor

VANCOUVER – A proud native of British Columbia, Cam Neely dreamed of winning the Stanley Cup on a regular basis during his childhood.

Never, however, did he think it would come trying to beat his hometown Vancouver Canucks while dressed in a suit and sitting in a press box suite, completely removed from exerting his considerable will on the outcome of the game.

"I didn't have a chance to do (win the Stanley Cup) in a uniform, but hopefully can do it in a suit," Neely said Tuesday afternoon as his Boston Bruins prepare to play the Vancouver Canucks in the 2011 Stanley Cup Final.

Today, Neely is the President of the Boston Bruins, 15 years removed from a Hall-of-Fame career that began with the hometown Canucks in 1983. After three underwhelming years in Vancouver, Neely was traded to Boston, along with a first-round pick, for Barry Pederson in a deal that essentially rewrote the Bruins' history for almost two decades.

Canucks, Bruins reach Final with stellar goaltending

Tuesday, 05.31.2011 / 8:49 PM / 2011 Stanley Cup Final - Canucks v Bruins

Dave Lozo - Staff Writer

VANCOUVER -- Last year's Stanley Cup Final featured a trio of goaltenders that could be described at the time as anything from unknowns to journeymen -- Chicago's Antti Niemi and Philadelphia's duo of Brian Boucher and Michael Leighton.

During the offseason that followed, some teams used that as evidence that a genuine No. 1 goaltender was no longer necessary for winning the Stanley Cup.

Evgeni Nabokov, coming off his third consecutive 40-win season and one of the League's top goalies over the past decade, wasn't re-signed by the San Jose Sharks and was forced to ply his trade in the KHL when no other team offered a contract to his liking. The Sharks, a team built to win a championship now, decided to go with a tandem of Niemi and Antero Niittymaki to start the season.

Calm approach has been key for Sedin twins

Tuesday, 05.31.2011 / 8:48 PM / 2011 Stanley Cup Final - Canucks v Bruins

Dan Rosen - Senior Writer

VANCOUVER -- Since arriving in Vancouver in 2000, the Sedin twins have given hockey fans and media people here reason to hype them, be patient with them, criticize them, admire them and love them while always asking for more from them.
The 2011 Stanley Cup Playoffs have been no different for Henrik and Daniel.
"I think our 10 years here has been like the playoffs this year," Henrik said Tuesday during Media Day at the Stanley Cup Final. "It's a lot of downs, a little bit of ups, but now we're here and it's a lot of fun."
The hype over the Sedins and the Canucks heading into this postseason was huge just like it was when ex-Canucks' GM Brian Burke pulled off the coup to land the twins in Vancouver. They were the second and third picks in the 2000 Entry Draft, and 11 years later the Canucks were the top team in the NHL coming into this spring's tournament, with Henrik as a reigning Hart Trophy winner and Daniel the favorite to be this season's League MVP.

Gillis: Malhotra 'hasn't been cleared to play yet'

Tuesday, 05.31.2011 / 7:07 PM / 2011 Stanley Cup Final - Canucks v Bruins

Dhiren Mahiban - Correspondent

VANCOUVER -- Questions continue to surround the status of Vancouver Canucks center Manny Malhotra for Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final. The center was not at practice on Tuesday. According to the team, he was at a doctor's appointment.

Last Saturday, Canucks coach Alain Vigneault told the media, "Manny has been officially cleared to play." However, on Tuesday GM Mike Gillis was singing a different tune.

"This has been a day-to-day thing all along," Gillis said. "He hasn't been cleared to play yet, he's been cleared for some contact, and he gets monitored every day."

Schneider returning to his Boston roots

Tuesday, 05.31.2011 / 12:49 PM / 2011 Stanley Cup Final - Canucks v Bruins

Dhiren Mahiban - Correspondent

VANCOUVER -- He grew up a New York Rangers fan idolizing Mike Richter, but deep down the Boston Bruins are a big reason Canucks backup Cory Schneider is in the position he's in today.

The Marblehead, Mass., native fondly remembers going to Bruins games at Boston Garden and then the Fleet Center as a child along with his dad Richard and his older brother Geoff, making this Stanley Cup Final all the more special for the 25-year-old.

"We split tickets with a group of guys, both my brother and I used to get about five games together with my dad," said Schneider, who grew up 17 miles away from the TD Garden. "We still do have those seats, so my brother and father have been to a couple games throughout the playoffs and I think my brother has become an even bigger Bruins fan than when he was playing (hockey)."

"I think once you stop playing you miss the game, and that's kind of his outlet now for his hockey enjoyment."

Former college players well represented in Final

Tuesday, 05.31.2011 / 12:02 PM / 2011 Stanley Cup Final - Canucks v Bruins

Emily Kaplan - Staff Writer

Tim Thomas has given it the old college try. Now he's hoping to win at the next level -- and lead the Boston Bruins to the 2011 Stanley Cup.

Thomas, the Bruins' star goalie, headlines a list of 13 former college players competing in this year's Stanley Cup Final.

With 11 former collegiate athletes suiting up for the Vancouver Canucks, and two for Boston, a former college player is assured of having his name on the Stanley Cup for the 36th consecutive season.

In this year's Final, there are representatives from 12 different schools and all five NCAA conferences.

Reading list: Will Canucks have Malhotra for Game 1?

Tuesday, 05.31.2011 / 10:30 AM / 2011 Stanley Cup Final - Canucks v Bruins

The wait is almost over.

Tuesday marks the fourth day that will have passed since the Boston Bruins shut out the Tampa Bay Lightning 1-0 to make the Stanley Cup Final for the first time since 1990, where they will face off against a team that hadn't been there in 17 years in the Vancouver Canucks.

The puck drops Wednesday night at 8 p.m. (NBC, CBC, RDS) at Rogers Arena as the Bruins try to end a Cup drought that dates back to 1972 and the Canucks look to bring home the first title in their 40-year franchise history.

Players dealing with ticket requests

Monday, 05.30.2011 / 8:04 PM / 2011 Stanley Cup Final - Canucks v Bruins

Dhiren Mahiban - Correspondent

VANCOUVER – They'll be battling in the corners and in front of the net come Game 1 on Wednesday night. But at the moment, the Vancouver Canucks are battling to meet ticket requests.

Having not been to the big dance in 17 long years, Stanley Cup Final tickets are the hottest item in Vancouver and players are feeling the heat to lock down enough for friends and family before they go on sale to the general public Tuesday morning.

"I've been playing the travel agent the last few days," joked Canucks forward Alexandre Burrows. "I told my friends that was it (today), there wasn't anymore travel agent when I was picking up my phone. That's all over now. I'm able to put the blinders on and just focus on what we've got to do here for the next couple weeks."

Malhotra likely to play Game 1

Monday, 05.30.2011 / 6:59 PM / 2011 Stanley Cup Final - Canucks v Bruins

Dhiren Mahiban - Correspondent

VANCOUVER Vancouver Canucks coach Alain Vigneault was maintaining the fact that center Manny Malhotra is "day-to-day" when he met the media Monday at Rogers Arena.

However, anyone who watched practice closely noticed the forward was paired on a penalty killing unit alongside Maxim Lapierre -- a sign that he'll likely play Game 1 against the Boston Bruins on Wednesday night.

"I've been watching (Maxim) play for quite some time now," Malhotra said. "It becomes a lot easier out there with a guy like him, who has that knack for talking, and we communicate really well out there in terms of switching, knowing where each other is, that made the transition today a little bit easier."
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