NHL Playoff Morning Papers (Wednesday Edition): Flames/Hawks trash talking continues, Ducks have to stop taking penalties and Canucks get short break
San Jose Sharks (1) versus Anaheim Ducks (8)
- Last night, the Sharks came out to play when they had to most, writes Mark Purdy. Everything they set out to accomplish in Game 3, they did just that. Torrey Mitchell returned to the San Jose lineup last night for the first time all season.
- “It’s ridiculous. It’s almost like hitting yourself in the head,” said Teemu Selanne about his team’s penchant for unnecessary penalties. “We’re still in the driver’s seat,” said Corey Perry after last night’s 4-3 home loss. All Anaheim players need to do for Game 4 is pretend they are playing on the road.
Detroit Red Wings (2) versus Columbus Blue Jackets (7)
- The Red Wings rained on the Jackets playoff parade about one minute into Game 3. This series is basically over, writes Drew Sharp of the Detroit Free Press. Bob Wojnowski of the Detroit News calls this series a “giant mismatch.”
- “We’ve let the fans down, we’ve let ourselves down and we’ve let the coaching staff down,” said Blue Jackets netminder Steve Mason. Even though they are getting dominated, the Blue Jackets fans are just happy to be in the playoffs. Michael Arace of the Columbus Dispatch pronouncing this series over. At least it was a fun party inside the arena.
Vancouver Canucks (3) versus St. Louis Blues (6)
- Roberto Luongo turned aside 47 shots and led the Canucks to a sweep of the youthful Blues. Alexandre Burrows says last night’s win was for the late Luc Bourdon. Will this break actually hurt the Canucks? The Canucks fans were partying hard after last night’s win. Sami Salo did not suit up for yesterday’s game.
- The Blues dressing room was silent for about 15 minutes after last night’s loss. The goal that was called back last night may have cost St. Louis the series. Even though they lost, this season has been a great learning experience for the young Blues.
Chicago Blackhawks (4) versus Calgary Flames (5)
- The Flames and Blackhawks are going at it on the ice and off of it. These teams just plain do not like each other. Patrick Kane will return to the Blackhawks lineup tonight. Former Flames and Blackhawks forward Theo Fleury is enjoying sober life.
- The Blackhawks are trash-talking Jarome Iginla hard, and it appears that only motivates the veteran right winger. Most of the Flames players believe Iginla plays better when he’s angry. The NHL has told both teams to ease up on the trash-talking. “I think, in the last two games, we showed we can dominate them and came up on the short end of the stick because we didn’t play a full 60 minutes,” said Eric Nystrom.