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Bruins Week Ahead: 4/23 - 4/27

by Staff Writer / Boston Bruins
THE BOSTON BRUINS WEEK AHEAD

*LIVE FROM GAME FIVE*
April 23 – April 30

THIS WEEK’S NEWS, NOTES AND NUMBERS:

ROUND 1 NOTEBOOK: The Bruins have been outscored by a 5-1 margin in the first periods of the four games of this series but have outscored the Sabres, 6-0 in the third periods ... The teams have each scored 3 second period goals…. Tuukka Rask had an assist on the overtime goal in game 4, and according to the Elias Sports Bureau is just the second goaltender in NHL history to assist on an OT score (Dominik Hasek, 5/22/02, Detroit at Colorado)…This is the third best-of-seven series between these teams in which the Bruins have held a 3-1 series lead … The Bruins won the 1989 DSF in 5 games and the 1992 DSF in 7 games… Of the 15 lifetime best-of-seven series in which the Bruins have held a 3-1 series lead, they have won the series in five games in nine of the series, have won in six games on three occasions and are 2-1 when the series has been extended to the full 7 games.

BEEN THERE BEFORE: Boston’s lone series loss when they have held a 3-1 series lead came in the 2004 CQF vs. Montreal, in which they also won game 4 in double OT. Boston coach Claude Julien was the Canadiens coach in that series, while current Bruins Michael Ryder and Steve Begin played for Montreal. Patrice Bergeron is the lone Bruin remaining in Boston from that series, while Buffalo defenseman Craig Rivet also was a member of the Habs squad.

GROW ONE FOR THE TEAM: The Boston Bruins are inviting fans to grow their own playoff beards to support the B’s during their playoff run by joining the “Bruins Beard-A-Thon.” By “growing one for the team” and inviting family, friends and business associates to pledge their playoff beards, they will be raising money for the Boston Bruins Foundation. Fans can create their “Bruins Beard-A-Thon” profile by uploading their photo at www.bostonbruins.com.

FACE OFF ON FACEBOOK: The Boston Bruins have partnered with the full-service digital marketing agency and Aegis Media group company, Isobar North America, to launch the interactive Facebook game "Bruins Face Off." The interactive game allows Bruins fans to compete against their Facebook friends and fellow fans around the world by predicting the statistical output of their favorite players based on points, hits and shots on goal during each game of the playoffs. To play "Bruins Face Off," fans can visit the Bruins Facebook page at  www.facebook.com/NHLBruins beginning Thursday, April 15.

THE STAT OF THE WEEK, COURTESY OF THE BOSTON BRUINS WEEK AHEAD STAT MACHINE:
The Bruins have held a lead for only 19 minutes and 41 seconds of the entire series with Buffalo.

THEY SAID IT…
Mark Recchi, on the Stanley Cup playoff experience...
These are special nights. The playoffs are so much fun. It is so much fun being a part of and being on the bench and the emotions that go through a game, the ups and downs, especially at this point. I soak everything in and it is fun watching the guys and being part of stuff like this.

UPCOMING PRACTICE SCHEDULE AND MEDIA AVAILABILITY
Please note the schedule is subject to change, visit bostonbruins.com/media or call 617.624.1910 for the latest updates to the schedule.

Ristuccia Arena (190 Main Street, Wilmington, MA 01887)
TD Garden (100 Legends Way, Boston, MA 02114)

Saturday, April 24 (Wilmington, MA)
-Practice schedule and media availability TBD

Sunday, April 25 (Wilmington, MA)
-Practice schedule and media availability TBD

Monday, April 26 (Boston, MA)
-Game 6 at TD Garden, 7:00 p.m. ET * if necessary

Tuesday, April 27 (Wilmington, MA)
-Practice schedule and media availability TBD

Wednesday, April 28 (Buffalo, NY/ Boston, MA)
-Pregame skate at HSBC Arena, 11:30 a.m. ET
-Game 7 at HSBC Arena, 7:00 p.m. ET * if necessary

AROUND TOWN
WHAT: Bruins Beard-A-Thon
The Boston Bruins are inviting fans to grow their own playoff beards to support the B’s during their playoff run by joining the “Bruins Beard-A-Thon.” By “growing one for the team” and inviting family, friends and business associates to pledge their playoff beards, they will be raising money for the Boston Bruins Foundation.
Fans can create their “Bruins Beard-A-Thon” profile by uploading their photo at www.bostonbruins.com.
WHEN: Throughout the Bruins playoff run
WHERE: www.bostonbruins.com

AROUND TOWN

WHAT: G.O.A.L! Presented by The UPS Store
The Boston Bruins and FMC Ice Sports have partnered to host G.O.A.L! (Get Out And Learn) hockey clinics throughout the spring. G.O.A.L! provides children ages 4-7, new to the sport of hockey, with free skating and hockey instruction. All of the hockey equipment, including skates and helmets, are provided so the children can fully experience the sport of hockey safely and free of charge. Bruins fans can sign up to participate in any of the G.O.A.L! clinics listed below at www.bostonbruins.com. The Bruins mascot, Blades and the Bruins youth hockey development team will be on hand to assist the new skaters and help create a fun atmosphere for everyone involved.

WHEN: Monday, April 26 from 6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
WHERE: William Chase Arena, 35 Windsor Ave. Natick, MA 02149
BRUINS PARTICIPATING: Bruins alumni Tommy Songin, the Bruins mascot, Blades, and the Bruins Youth Hockey Development Team

WHEN: Tuesday, April 27 from 5:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.
WHERE: Jim Roche Community Ice Arena, 1275 VFW Parkway, West Roxbury, MA 02132
BRUINS PARTICIPATING: Bruins alumni Tommy Songin, the Bruins mascot, Blades, and the Bruins Youth Hockey Development Team

WHEN: Wednesday, April 28 from 4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. and 5:30 p.m.– 6:30 p.m.
WHERE Cronin Memorial Skating Rink, 850 Revere Beach Parkway, Revere, MA 02151
BRUINS PARTICIPATING: Bruins alumni Tommy Songin, the Bruins mascot, Blades, and the Bruins Youth Hockey Development Team

PLAYOFF CAPSULES

NOTES: Heading into Friday night’s match-ups, two teams have 3-1 series leads over their opponents, with Boston having a chance to close out Buffalo on Friday and Washington has a chance to close out their series against Montreal on Friday as well. Two teams have a 3-2 series lead (Pittsburgh over Ottawa, San Jose over Colorado), while three series are tied at 2-2 (Chicago-Nashville, Detroit-Phoenix, Vancouver-Los Angeles). Philadelphia finished off New Jersey on Thursday night to win their series 4-1.

TIES AND OT: After the first two games of every series had been played, all eight first-round series were tied 1-1, the first time that's happened since the best-of-seven format was adopted for the opening round in 1987. A total of eight overtime games have been played. Both the Washington-Montreal and Vancouver-Los Angeles series had yet to see a game end in regulation until Monday night, when the Capitals defeated the Canadiens 5-1 and the Kings defeated the Canucks 5-3.

WESTERN CONFERENCE CAPSULES

San Jose (1) vs. Colorado (8) – Sharks lead series 3-2

GAME 1: Colorado 2, San Jose 1
-NOTES: Chris Stewart scored the game-winner with 49.3 seconds remaining in regulation to lift the Avs over the top-seeded Sharks. The down-low goal went in off Rob Blake’s skate to prevent an extra session. Craig Anderson led Colorado in net with 25 saves in his first NHL playoff game, keeping San Jose’s top three regular season point-getters – former B Joe Thornton (89 points), Patrick Marleau (83) and Dany Heatley (82) off the board. Matt Duchene also made his NHL playoff debut and notched an assist on the Avs’ first goal.

GAME 2: San Jose 6, Colorado 5 (OT)
-NOTES: San Jose tied the series on a power play goal by Devin Setoguchi 5:22 into overtime – its first lead of the game. Despite the Sharks registering 52 shots on goal, the Avalanche led at four different points in the game. Six goals were scored in the second, with Colorado’s Chris Stewart starting off his two-goal night 24 seconds into the period. San Jose answered every Colorado lead, most notably when Joe Pavelski slipped the puck past Craig Anderson with 32 seconds left in regulation to force OT. Evgeni Nabokov let in five goals on 22 shots, finishing the game with a .865 save percentage.

GAME 3: Colorado 1, San Jose 0 (OT)
-NOTES: Colorado goaltender Craig Anderson stopped all 51 shots the Sharks threw at him in the Avs’ 1-0 overtime victory. Anderson’s 51 saves marked a home playoff record for saves in a game and gave the Avalanche a 2-1 lead in the series. After turning away 21 third period shots, Anderson and the Avalanche were able to pull through just 51 seconds into the first overtime period on a goal that was credited to Colorado’s Ryan O’ Reilly. San Jose defenseman Dan Boyle was trying to backhand the puck behind his own net, but the puck ended up going behind San Jose goaltender Evgeni Nabokov, suddenly ending the game. The Sharks were without elite goal scorer Dany Heatley due to an undisclosed injury and failed to register a goal, after scoring six in Game 2.

GAME 4: San Jose 2, Colorado 1 (OT)
-NOTES: Facing a 2-1 deficit in the series to the eighth-seeded Avalanche, San Jose pulled even in the series with a 2-1 overtime win in Colorado, setting up a pivotal Game 5 on Thursday in San Jose. The Sharks got the game-winner at 10:24 of the first overtime period from forward Joe Pavelski to get the victory. Sharks goaltender Evgeni Nabokov turned away 33 of 34 shots from the Avalanche in the winning effort. Sharks defenseman Dan Boyle redeemed himself from his Game 3 miscue to register a goal for the top-seeded Sharks.

GAME 5: San Jose 5, Colorado 0
-NOTES: San Jose’s played a complete game in game 5 to take the lead in the series 3-2. With the series knotted at 2 games apiece, the Sharks routed the Avalanche on home ice to put themselves in position to close out the series on Saturday in Colorado. Sharks goaltender Evgeni Nabokov recorded his seventh career postseason shutout, turning away 28 Avalanche shots in the process. Sharks’ rookie forward Logan Couture had two goals in the contest, his first career postseason points. San Jose forward Patrick Marleau, who tallied 44 goals in the regular season, scored his first of the postseason in the winning effort.

-UPCOMING GAMES:
*Saturday, April 24     San Jose at Colorado        TBD, CBC

Chicago (2) vs. Nashville (7) – Series tied 2-2

GAME 1: Nashville 4, Chicago 1
-NOTES: Nashville rallied with a four-goal third period to overcome a 1-0 deficit in the first-ever playoff meeting between the two clubs. Pekka Rinne faced 26 shots, only letting in a Patrick Kane rebound goal 9:43 into the second. Ex-Blackhawk J.P. Dumont flipped a backhander on Antti Niemi 1:31 into the third that took a few bounces before finding the back of the net for the tying goal. He followed with another goal nine minutes and six seconds later for the go-ahead. Two empty-net goals (Jerred Smithson, Martin Erat) sealed the deal for the Predators’ Game 1 upset over the Hawks. Niemi allowed two goals on 24 shots as Nashville earned their first playoff road win in franchise history.

GAME 2: Chicago 2, Nashville 1
-NOTES: With a scoreless game after the first period, Chicago’s Dave Bolland found the back of the net on a power play 8:44 into the second. Early in the third period, a turnover at the Hawks’ blue line caused Patrick Sharp to pick up the loose puck and dish it to Patrick Kane, who put it past Pekka Rinne (31 saves) for the clincher and his second goal of the series. Kane had a two-point night as he assisted on Bolland’s goal. Antti Niemi stopped all 23 Nashville shots for his first career playoff shutout.

GAME 3: Nashville 4, Chicago 1
-NOTES: The Predators took a 1-0 lead 13:00 into the first, when Joel Ward sent a backhander past Antti Niemi (31 saves). Despite Tomas Kopecky’s power play goal that tied it up soon after, with 2:25 left in the first, the Predators scored three straight goals to take a 2-1 series lead over the Blackhawks. Steve Sullivan had a two-point night with two assists, including the assist on David Legwand’s game-winning goal 4:00 into the second. Legwand had three points on the night with a goal and two assists. Pekka Rinne stopped 26 of the 27 shots he faced in the victory. Patrick Kane did not register a shot until midway through the third. Martin Erat scored on a penalty shot with just over five minutes to go in regulation – the first playoff penalty-shot goal in Nashville history.

GAME 4: Chicago 3, Nashville 0
-NOTES: Facing a 2-1 series deficit, Chicago rallied for a 3-0 win in Nashville to send the series back to Chicago for game 5 Saturday tied at 2 games apiece. Chicago forward Patrick Sharp scored his first two goals on the postseason to pace the Blackhawks, who dominated the Predators. Chicago goaltender Antti Niemi recorded his second shutout of the postseason by stopping 33 Nashville shots. Chicago playmaker Jonathan Toews added a goal and an assist to prevent going into a 3-1 series deficit. Nashville goaltender Pekka Rinne made 27 saves in the losing effort.

-UPCOMING GAMES:
*Saturday, April 24     Nashville at Chicago        3:00 p.m. ET, NBC

Vancouver (3) vs. Los Angeles (6) – Series tied 2-2

GAME 1: Vancouver 3, Los Angeles 2 (OT)
-NOTES: Vancouver’s Mikael Samuelsson, a former Stanley Cup Champion (2008 with Detroit), recorded his second goal of the game at 8:52 of the first overtime to give the Canucks a game one win on home ice. Samuelsson’s goal was set up by Vancouver goaltender Roberto Luongo’s save on Los Angeles defenseman Jack Johnson in the overtime period, when Johnson appeared to have an open net to shoot at. Making his first playoff start, Kings’ goaltender Jonathan Quick made 41 saves in the losing effort. Vancouver’s Henrik Sedin, the NHL’s leading point scorer during the regular season, recorded two assists in the game including a set up on Samuelsson’s game-winner in overtime.

GAME 2: Los Angeles 3, Vancouver 2 (OT)
-NOTES: The Kings rallied from a 2-0 first period deficit to win get the overtime victory in overtime and tie the series at one game apiece, with the series heading back to LA. Los Angeles goaltender Jonathan Quick turned away 24 of 26 Vancouver shots in the win and Kings forward Anze Kopitar had two assists in the contest to go along with the game-winning overtime

goal 7:28 into the extra frame. Los Angeles defenseman Drew Doughty logged 32:56 of ice time to lead all skaters and he also set up the game-winning overtime goal with his lone assists of the contest. Vancouver forward Mikael Samuelsson added his third goal of the playoffs and forward Ryan Kesler chipped in with two assists in the losing effort.

GAME 3: Los Angeles 5, Vancouver 3
-NOTES: Playing in their first home playoff game in nearly eight years, the Kings took control of the series with a 5-3 victory in Game 3 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. They went a perfect 3-for-3 on the power play in the contest, getting two power play goals from forward Michal Handzus and another from defenseman Drew Doughty to improve to 7-for-12 on the power play in the series. Doughty continued his strong postseason performance with a game-high four points to pace the Kings. After Kings forward Brad Richardson’s goal at 13:21 of the second period put Los Angeles up 4-1, Vancouver head coach Alain Vigneault pulled his starting goaltender Roberto Luongo from the game, replacing him with former Boston Bruin Andrew Raycroft. The Canucks were able to pull within a goal in the third period after goals from forwards Mikael Samuelsson and Daniel Sedin, but couldn’t find the equalizer. Samuelsson’s second period goal was his fourth of the postseason in just three games.

GAME 4: Vancouver 6, Los Angeles 4
-NOTES: Facing a 2-1 series deficit, Vancouver came up with a huge third period to even the series at two games apiece. Down 3-2 heading into the third, the Canucks rallied for four goals and pulled away from Los Angeles for the 6-4 win. Vancouver forward Mikael Samuelsson netted his fifth goal of the postseason to get the scoring going in the third and forward Henrik Sedin scored the game-winner with just 2:52 remaining. Goaltender Roberto Luongo made 22 saves, including two key ones in the third period to help preserve the win. The Kings continued their power play success with two more goals in the contest, giving them nine in total for the series.

-UPCOMING GAMES:
Friday, April 23                Los Angeles at Vancouver        10:00 p.m. ET, CBC
*Sunday April 25            Vancouver at Los Angeles        TBD, VERSUS (if necessary)

Phoenix (4) vs. Detroit (5) – Series tied 2-2

GAME 1: Phoenix 3, Detroit 2
-NOTES: Ex-Bruin Derek Morris had 3 points (1 goal, 2 assists) including the game winner as the Coyotes rallied to defeat the Wings. The GWG came on the power play 2:19 into the third period and led to Morris’ first three-point game in more than three years. All three of Phoenix’s goals came on the power play, as they overcame a usually weak power play to strike the back of the net on three out of four total chances. The Coyotes finished the regular season ranked 28th on the PP overall (14.6%) and 30th at home (13.6%). Detroit goaltender Jimmy Howard, a former University of Maine standout, appeared in his first NHL playoff game.

GAME 2: Detroit 7, Phoenix 4
-NOTES: Henrik Zetterberg scored his first playoff hat trick in the third period, including the game-winner with 6:06 left, to lift the Wings over the Coyotes and tie the series at one game apiece before heading to Detroit. Phoenix initially took the lead with Keith Yandle’s goal at 10:23 of the first period. Although the Coyotes finished the regular season 36-3-3 when leading after the first, the Wings fought back from a one-goal deficit to even the score heading into the final stanza. Five goals were scored 3:58 apart in the third, mostly off odd-man rushes. First, Justin Abdelkader tallied an early goal to put Detroit up for the first time. Phoenix answered with Shane Doan’s tally, but Ilya Bryzgalov could not contain Detroit’s offense, as they rallied to score three unanswered goal (one an EN). Valterri Filppula had two goals and an assist and Pavel Datysuk finished with one goal and six hits in the win. Jimmy Howard had 27 saves and held all three Phoenix power plays off the scoreboard.

GAME 3: Phoenix 4, Detroit 2
-NOTES: Tied 1-1 after the first period, Phoenix’s Wojtek Wolski flipped a backhander past Jimmy Howard with 32 seconds left in the second period for what proved to be the game-winner. Coyotes Petr Prucha and Radim Vrbata each had a goal and an assist, while Martin Hanzel and Matt Lombardi each registered two assists in the victory. The Red Wings rallied in the third period to bring the score to within one (3-2), but Vrbata’s goal with 11:38 left in regulation sealed the Coyotes’ win, giving them a 2-1 lead in the series. Howard and Ilya Bryzgalov each turned away 29 shots, but Phoenix was able to put two more past Howard. Valtteri Filppula and Johan Franzen scored for the Wings and Henrik Zetterberg notched two assists. Phoenix’s Shane Doan -- who topped all Phoenix scorers with 55 points this season -- suffered an upper-body injury early in the second period and did not return. His status for Game 4 is unknown.

GAME 4: Detroit 3, Phoenix 0
-NOTES: Henrik Zetterberg scored twice to lead to the Red Wings to a victory over the Coyotes and even the series 2-2. Zetterberg has notched five goals in Detroit’s two victories over Phoenix. After a scoreless first period, Phoenix saw former Boston Bruin Petteri Nokelainen sent off for interference 15:33 into the second period. Detroit converted on the power play when Zetterberg tipped in a blast from the point by Niklas Kronwall. Along with the game-winner, Zetterberg tallied the insurance goal for the Wings with under five minutes to go in regulation. Jimmy Howard made 29 saves for his first career playoff shutout. Ilya Bryzgalov finished the night with 32 saves. Pavel Datsyuk notched his second goal and third point of the playoffs with a slap shot that found its way past Brygalov in the third period, just 25 seconds before Zetterberg’s clincher.

-UPCOMING GAMES:
Friday, April 23            Detroit at Phoenix      10:00 p.m. ET, VERSUS
*Sunday, April 25           Phoenix at Detroit      2: p.m. ET, NBC

*If necessary

JIP – Joined In Progress

BRUINS ON THE AIRWAVES:

THE BUZZ: NESN’s Naoko Funayama will take you through the latest Bruins news on and off the ice on NESN’s weekly countdown show, The Buzz. Check your local listings for the Buzz’ airtimes.

THE HOCKEY SHOW ON 98.5: Bruins play-by-play man Dave Goucher and color analyst Bob Beers will team up with Sports Hub host Damon Amendolara every Wednesday night at 7:00 p.m. for “The Hockey Show”- an hour long program on 98.5 FM devoted to news, notes and phone calls on everything going on with the Bruins and around the NHL.

WEEKLY SPOTS:
Tune in to the following stations for weekly segments with Bruins personnel:

Mondays
98.5 The Sports Hub
8:20 a.m. Milan Lucic with “Toucher and Rich”

Tuesdays
98.5 The Sports Hub
4:20 p.m. Cam Neely with “Felger and Massarotti”

Wednesdays
98.5 The Sports Hub
12:40 p.m. Blake Wheeler with “Tanguay and Zolak”

Thursdays
98.5 The Sports Hub
8:20 a.m. Shawn Thornton with “Toucher and Rich”

100.7 FM WZLX
8:25 a.m. Marc Savard with “Karlson and McKenzie”

107.3 FM WAAF
8:30 a.m. Cam Neely with “The Hill-Man Morning Show”

98.5 The Sports Hub
4:20 p.m. Peter Chiarelli with “Felger and Massarotti”


POSTSEASON STATISTICAL LEADERS (As of Friday, April 23):

Goals
T1. M. Samuelsson (VAN), 5
T1. H. Zetterberg (DET), 5
T1. N. Backstrom (WSH), 5
T1. S. Crosby (PIT), 5

Assists
1. S. Crosby (PIT), 8
T2. J. Johnson (LAK), 6
T2. S. Gonchar (PIT), 6
T2. J. Spezza (OTT), 6
T2. M. Richards (PHI), 6

Points
1. S. Crosby (PIT), 13
2. N. Backstrom (WSH), 9
T3. A. Ovechkin (WSH), 8
T3. M. Richards (PHI), 8

Penalty Minutes
1. J. Ruutu (OTT), 32
2. A. Alberts (VAN), 23
3. D. Clarkson (NJD), 22
4. C. Neil (OTT), 20
5. D. Carcillo, (PHI), 18

Goals Against Average
1. A. Niemi (CHI), 1.51
2. B. Boucher (PHI), 1.59
3. E. Nabokov (SJS), 1.71
4. P. Rinne (NSH), 1.79
5. T. Rask (BOS), 1.80

Save Percentage
1. A. Niemi (CHI), .948
T2. B. Boucher (PHI), .940
T2. P. Rinne (NSH), .940
3. T. Rask (BOS), .939
4. C. Anderson (COL), .937
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