From Abdelkader to Zuccarello – 20 April 2011

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2011 NHL Playoff Coverage

Vancouver Canucks 2 Chicago Blackhawks 7 (Game 4; Canucks lead series 3-1)

Looking at being swept out of the first round of the playoffs the Blackhawks had to put on a show at home in Chicago last night – and they did just that.

Scoring first it was Bryan Bickell less than two minutes into the game to put Chicago up 1-0 over the dominate Vancouver.

Vancouver defenseman Sami Salo would tie the game when he put a slap shot past Corey Crawford on the power play after Chicago’s Dave Bolland was called for elbowing.

With the game tied it would be an amazing save from Roberto Luongo in the final seconds of the first period that would keep the game tied; but at a cost as it appeared Luongo may have been injured making the save.

It was a relief to Vancouver fans to see Luongo come back in the second after the way he had left the ice at the end of the first; however, that relief would not last long.

Just over five minutes into the second period Chicago’s Brian Campbell made it 2-1 and then seconds later Duncan Keith made it 3-1 over Vancouver.

By the end of the period it would be 5-1 Blackhawks.

The third period would see an onslaught of penalties called after each team had only received two each in the first two periods o the game. It would start with a boarding call to Canucks Maxim Lapierre which would lead to a power play goal from Patrick Sharp to make it 6-1 Blackhawks.

At 4:05 into the period Vancouver would see Tanner Glass and Maxim Lapierre receive a 10 minute misconduct, Jannik Hansen a two minute boarding, and Glass would also be assessed a two minute roughing penalty while Chicago would see John Scott assessed a ten minute misconduct and Chris Campoli a two minute roughing.

After those penalties were cleared out it would be Alexander Edler with a charging penalty that would put the Canucks back on the penalty kill and see Patrick Sharp score on the Blackhawk power play to make it 7-1 for the home team.

In the final five minutes of the game Raffi Torres and John Scott would each be given a ten minute misconduct and sent to the locker room. Chicago’s Niklas Hjalmarsson would be given a two minute roughing. Vancouver’s Kevin Bieksa and Chicago’s Viktor Stalberg would be given five for fighting, Ryan Johnson of the Blackhawks would be given a roughing penalty and in the final minute Maxim Lapierre would get an unsportsmanlike conduct call.

In the mess of penalties Daniel Sedin scored the second goal for the Canucks as he tipped-in a shot from Christian Ehrhoff.

Game 5 will be in Vancouver on Thursday at 10:00 p.m. EST on CBC (HD) and Versus.

San Jose Sharks 6 Los Angeles Kings 5 (OT) (Game 3; Sharks leads series 2-1)

Sharks bite back after being down 4-0 to take the Kings in overtime.

The first period belonged to the Kings as Willie Mitchell and Kyle Clifford would each score to make it 2-0 within the first three minutes of the game. It would be Michal Handzus late in the period to make it 3-0 for the home team in their first home playoff game.

It looked as though the Kings were going to keep control of the game as Brad Richardson would make it 4-0 just 44 seconds into the second period when Antti Niemi was pulled from the Sharks net and Antero Niittymaki came in for relief.

It was a tip-in goal for San Jose’s Patrick Marleau that would get past Jonathan Quick that would put the smell of blood in the water for the Sharks.

The attack was on.

The Sharks would see Ryane Clowe score minutes later on a power play after Kings Dustin Penner would be called for roughing. It would be rookie Logan Couture with a slap shot that would bring the Sharks within one of the Kings before LA’s Ryan Smyth would tip in a shot from Jarett Stoll to increase the Kings lead to two goals over the Sharks.

In the final minutes of the second period Ryane Clowe and Joe Pavelski would each put a wrist shot past Quick to tie the game.

The third period would come and go with no goals scored or penalties called and the game would head to over time that would see Sharks Devin Setoguchi put a wrist shot past Quick for the win and put the Sharks up 2-1 in the series.

Game 4 is Thursday at 10:30 p.m. EST on TSN.

Up into the Netting

Yesterday the NHL announced that the three finalist for the Calder Memorial Trophy (rookie of the year) were:

Michael Grabner of the New York Islanders
Logan Couture of the San Jose Sharks
Jeff Skinner of the Carolina Hurricanes

Today they will announce the three finalist for the General Manager of the Year.

NBC/Versus and the NHL announced yesterday that the new tv contract for the league will be a ten-year contract for $200 million a year. Now hopefully a deal with NBC will lead to the NHL players being allowed to go participate in the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.

Penguins Chris Kunitz was suspended for one game for the elbow to Lightning’s Simon Gagne while Tampa’s Steve Downie suspended for one game for charging Pittsburgh’s Ben Lovejoy. The suspensions mare the 3rd and 4th of the post season which is only a week under way.

“My goal from age five until probably twenty was to play in the Olympics.” – Boston Bruins goaltender Tim Thomas (via USA Hockey).

Max Domi, Son of Tie, was drafted by the United States Hockey Leagues Indiana Ice and is expected to play there next season.

Mike Babcock head coach for the Detroit Red Wings saw his son, Michael, get drafted yesterday by the Cedar Rapids RoughRiders (USHL).

Risto Pakarinen takes a look at the new SM-liiga champions HIFK and how they are big and bad again.

Detroit’s Black Aces are learning on the job.

Colin Campbell explains why the Raffi Torres his is not suspendable.

Peter Forsberg may have retired from playing hockey but he is not done with being involved in the sport. Forsberg is the newest addition to the MODO (Swedish Elite League) front office as he has been named Deputy General Manager.

Today’s NHL Playoff Lineup

Washington Capitals at New York Rangers Game 4
Capitals lead series 2-1
7:00 p.m. EST on TSN and Versus

Pittsburgh Penguins at Tampa Bay Lightning Game 4
Penguins lead series 2-1
7:00 pm. EST on CBC (HD)

Philadelphia Flyers at Buffalo Sabres Game 4
Flyers lead series 2-1
7:30 p.m. EST on TSN and Versus

Anaheim Ducks at Nashville Predators Game 4
Predators lead series 2-1
8:30 p.m. EST on TSN

Detroit Red Wings at Phoenix Coyotes Game 4
Red Wings lead series 3-0
10:30 p.m. on CBC (HD) and Versus


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