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Stanley Cup Final
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Sharks get OK to interview Bylsma: report

Monday, 05.18.2015 / 11:14 PM / News

The San Jose Sharks have been given permission to interview Dan Bylsma for their coaching position, ESPN.com reported Monday.

The website also said Mike Babcock was scheduled to speak with the Sharks this week to discuss a possible future with the organization, but Babcock said he is done speaking with teams. It is unknown if he interviewed with the Sharks.

Bylsma was fired by the Pittsburgh Penguins after last season with two years remaining on his contract. The Penguins reached the Stanley Cup Playoffs in each of the six seasons he coached, and he led Pittsburgh to the Stanley Cup in 2009. He was 252-117-32 in the regular season.

ESPN reporter Craig Custance said Bylsma turned down two jobs before this season; Custance did not identify the teams.

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Linesman Kovachik leaves Game 2 with knee injury

NHL.com

Linesman Brad Kovachik left Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Final on Monday in the second period with a sprained knee after a collision along the boards.

The NHL said he will be out indefinitely.

Tampa Bay Lightning forward Steven Stamkos checked New York Rangers defenseman Kevin Klein, who hit Kovachik with 7:41 left in the period.

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Babcock done meeting teams, decision soon: report

Monday, 05.18.2015 / 9:12 PM / News

NHL.com

Mike Babcock said Monday he is done speaking with NHL teams about becoming their coach and will announce a decision Wednesday.

The Detroit Red Wings coach will meet with general manager Ken Holland on Tuesday, Babcock told Mlive.com.

"Just going to revisit everything one more time," Babcock said. "I've talked to all the teams I'm talking to."

The Toronto Maple Leafs, Buffalo Sabres, San Jose Sharks and St. Louis Blues asked permission to speak with Babcock, according to the website.

"I learned a lot. I talked to lots of good people," Babcock told writer Ansar Khan. "I kept Kenny abreast the whole time. We'll talk one more time [Tuesday] and then I'll sit down with my family one more time [Tuesday] night and make a decision."

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Blue Jackets will name captain on Wednesday

Monday, 05.18.2015 / 8:57 PM / News

NHL.com

The Columbus Blue Jackets will name their next captain at a press conference Wednesday.

"We know who it's going to be," Davidson told Columbus Business First in an interview published April 30. "... He's popped, he's a person that's carried himself with outstanding leadership."

The Blue Jackets alerted season-ticket holders in an email and announced it on their website Monday.

The Columbus Dispatch said it is expected only the captain, not any alternate captains, will be revealed.

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Boyle returns to Lightning lineup for Game 2

Monday, 05.18.2015 / 8:13 PM / News

David Satriano - NHL.com Staff Writer

NEW YORK -- Tampa Bay Lightning forward Brian Boyle is in the lineup for Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Final against the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden on Monday.

Boyle, who did not play in the Lightning’s 2-1 loss in Game 1 on Saturday because of an undisclosed injury, took line rushes with Brenden Morrow and J.T. Brown before the game.

In 13 Stanley Cup Playoff games, Boyle has a goal and an assist, and Lightning captain Steven Stamkos discussed Boyle's importance to the team Monday.

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Ducks finding success with young, skilled defense

Corey Masisak - NHL.com Staff Writer

ANAHEIM -- Each of the past two postseasons have ended in familiar fashion for the Anaheim Ducks, a disappointing defeat in a Game 7 at Honda Center after a successful regular season.

The 2014-15 Ducks have already progressed further than the previous two teams. One of the biggest reasons is their young, skilled defensemen.

General manager Bob Murray has overhauled the defense over the past couple of seasons, moving away from a collection of low-risk veterans to a swift skating group. For a team with such high expectations, it has taken courage to commit to fielding a lineup with four defensemen who have not reached their 24th birthday, but Anaheim has been rewarded with a late-season spike in its possession statistics and a deep run in the 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs.

"I think with all of the young guys, we are in a good organization that lets you develop at the pace that you can do," Ducks defenseman Hampus Lindholm said. "They have great guys around the organization to help as well. There’s [Scott Niedermayer], who I talk to a lot. He’s been really good for me. Being paired with Francois [Beauchemin] has been great too as a veteran guy to kind of rely on. They’ve been doing a great job of shaping us the way they want."

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Blackhawks may make change on defense for Game 2

Shawn Roarke - Director, Editorial

ANAHEIM -- The Chicago Blackhawks may make a change on their blue line for Game 2 of the Western Conference Final against the Anaheim Ducks.

Although Chicago coach Joel Quenneville refused to confirm it Monday, multiple signs point to journeyman Kyle Cumiskey replacing David Rundblad, who had a rugged Game 1 as a replacement for injured Michal Rozsival.

Game 2 is Tuesday at Honda Center (9 p.m. ET; NBCSN, CBC, TVA Sports). Anaheim leads the best-of-7 series 1-0 after winning 4-1 on Sunday.

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Analysis: Hakstol can develop Flyers' young talent

Monday, 05.18.2015 / 5:36 PM / NHL Insider

Dan Rosen - NHL.com Senior Writer

The idea that general manager Ron Hextall went off the board and stunned the hockey world Monday by hiring Dave Hakstol to be coach of the Philadelphia Flyers is true only because of how rare it is for teams to go outside of the NHL's insular network of coaches.

Sixteen coaches in the NHL are in at least their second stop in the League, including four who are coaching with their fourth organization. Six of the nine coaches who haven't been coaches elsewhere were at least assistants in the NHL at one point.

The three who weren't are Patrick Roy of the Colorado Avalanche, Jon Cooper of the Tampa Bay Lightning, and now Haksol. Roy won the Jack Adams Award last season. Cooper has the Lightning in the Eastern Conference Final and was a finalist for the Jack Adams Award last season.

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Ducks' fourth line has unlikely yet successful reunion

Curtis Zupke - NHL.com Correspondent

ANAHEIM -- Jiri Sekac had not played a game in over a month. Emerson Etem was benched the previous two games. Rickard Rakell was recovering from the flu.

That's not the ideal recipe for a line to get thrown into the Western Conference Final, but it worked for the Anaheim Ducks against the Chicago Blackhawks in Game 1.

The fourth-line trio was reunited and coach Bruce Boudreau wasn't disappointed in a 4-1 win at Honda Center. Game 2 is Tuesday (9 p.m. ET; NBCSN, CBC, TVA Sports).

"Well, they really gave us good energy at the proper time, before we scored our second goal," Boudreau said. "They were on the ice before Nate Thompson's line. They created the buzz in their zone. We followed that up with that shift. We ended up scoring the goal. I mean, I got to believe they'll be together at least [Tuesday]. Beyond that, I don't know what's going to happen."

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Capitals' Green enters offseason with uncertain future

Monday, 05.18.2015 / 4:08 PM / News

Katie Brown - NHL.com Correspondent

ARLINGTON, Va. -- Washington Capitals defenseman Mike Green said he thinks the best years of his NHL career are ahead of him.

Green, who can become an unrestricted free agent on July 1, will have to make some tough decisions about his future this summer. They could involve saying farewell to the place he's spent his entire NHL career.

"I just want to play on a competitive team that wants to win," Green said. "That's really the ultimate factor that comes into play for me, and I know that Washington's a competitive organization. It's hard to think of the uncertainty of this summer and what might happen. It's probably a little scary at times for myself to think that anything could happen."

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Quote of the Day

That's a really tough thing to play through; when you finally are thrown out there, the game is fast, intense, every single play matters, you've got to find a way to play through that and make smart plays. So it's a huge testament to [Vermette] and some other individuals in our locker room that are putting their own ego, their own wants and needs aside, and are ready for those opportunities when they do come.

— Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews on teammate Antoine Vermette, who returned from being a healthy scratch in Game 3 to score the double-overtime winner in Game 4