The general managers of the 30 NHL clubs submitted ballots for the Vezina Trophy at the conclusion of the regular season, with the top three vote-getters designated as finalists. The winner will be announced Tuesday, June 24, during the 2014 NHL Awards from Encore Theater at Wynn Las Vegas. The 2014 NHL Awards will be broadcast by NBCSN in the United States and CBC in Canada.
LOS ANGELES -- One of the stories that came out of the Los Angeles Kings' 2012 Stanley Cup run was an inspirational speech by Justin Williams before the Cup-clinching win in Game 6. Teammates won't divulge details but have suggested Williams touched on not letting the moment slip away.
Thursday, Williams again stepped up for the Kings.
Williams scored two goals in the second period to help Los Angeles beat the San Jose Sharks 6-3 at Staples Center and avoid a sweep. Game 5 of the Western Conference First Round series is Saturday at SAP Center (10 p.m. ET; CBC, CNBC, RDS2, FS-W, CSN-CA).
DETROIT -- Henrik Zetterberg hopes to have a few more games this season in order to work himself into optimal playing shape. The Detroit Red Wings will have to win in Boston to give him that chance.
Zetterberg returned to the Red Wings' lineup Thursday for the first time since Feb. 8. He was greeted by a loud cheer when he stepped on the ice for warmups and provided an emotional lift to his team. But as the game wore on he, like the Red Wings, started to drag.
Detroit gave up a two-goal lead and lost 3-2 in overtime to the Boston Bruins to fall into a 3-1 hole in the best-of-7 Eastern Conference First Round series. Game 5 is Saturday at TD Garden (3 p.m. ET; NBC, RDS, TSN).
DETROIT -- One goaltender was a late scratch from Game 4 of the Eastern Conference First Round between the Boston Bruins and the Detroit Red Wings on Thursday. The other couldn't stop his team from falling in a 2-0 hole early in the game.
Fortunately for the Bruins, Tuukka Rask didn't let the two goals he allowed in the first 24:27 make him sick. And despite a valiant effort by Detroit backup Jonas Gustavsson, the Red Wings weren't able to prevail with their starter Jimmy Howard nowhere to be found rink side because of what was announced as flu-like symptoms.
Rask finished with 35 saves at Joe Louis Arena in the Bruins' 3-2 overtime victory, which put them ahead 3-1 in the best-of-7 series with Game 5 scheduled for Saturday at TD Garden (3 p.m. ET; NBC, TSN, RDS).
NEW YORK -- One year ago, the New York Islanders and defenseman Matt Carkner were standing toe-to-toe with the Pittsburgh Penguins, owners of the best record in the Eastern Conference. The Islanders not only split the first four games of their Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series, they sent Marc-Andre Fleury, one of the NHL's top goaltenders, to the bench.
Confidence was high in the Islanders' dressing room, similar to what the Columbus Blue Jackets are feeling after a series-tying 4-3 overtime win against the Penguins in Game 4 on Wednesday. The Blue Jackets have a chance to do on Saturday what Carkner and the Islanders couldn't do last year during the Stanley Cup Playoffs; win Game 5 at Consol Energy Center (7 p.m. ET; NBCSN, CBC, RDS, FS-O, ROOT).
You could see out there that everybody was willing to compete, to sacrifice, even blocking shots to the end. Even in the third when we were up 5-0, guys were still working hard and blocking shots That's a nice feeling also for the future.
— Flames goalie Jonas Hiller after his team's 5-0 win over Carolina