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Colorado Avalanche

NHL Morning Papers: Playoffs!

Eastern Conference: Montreal vs. Philadelphia

The Canadiens goaltending experiment failed them, as they dropped a 4-2 decision to the Flyers. The Habs now face elimination, having been stymied by Martin Biron. Coach Carbonneau has been tabbed as a Jack Adams nominee.

Daniel Briere feels that he redeemed himself with last night’s game winner. Phil Sheridan writes about RJ Umberger, who started the year on the 4th line and worked his way up to become an important cog in the Flyers attack. Despite their series lead, the Flyers are struggling to kill penalties.
New York Rangers vs. Pittsburgh Penguins

As the Rangers stare into the abyss of elimination, one wonders if Jaromir Jagr and Brendan Shanahan are about to play their final games as Rangers. With the loss of Sean Avery to a ruptured spleen, the Rangers look to rally. Speaking of Jaromir Jagr, he is only concerned about winning.

The Penguins have a sweep in mind, but are saying nice things about Sean Avery now that he is out for the season. Penguins beat writer Rob Rossi answers fans’ questions. In injury news, the Penguins might be without Maxime Talbot and Rob Scuderi for tonight’s game.

Western Conference Detroit vs. Colorado

Drew Sharp of the Detroit Free Press writes on the impact of Europeans in the playoffs, especially with the Red Wings. Chris Chelios honors former Blackhawk Keith Magnuson by wearing Magnuson’s # 3 on his helmet. Wings coach Mike Babcock has been named as a Jack Adams Finalist. Helene St. James notes that the acquisition of Brad Stuart has paid big dividends for the the Wings.

With the Avs facing elimination, the Denver Post ponders a future without Joe Sakic. Dave Krieger writes that while the Avs’ goaltending has been fine, it has to be unbelievable if the Avs are to have a chance. Despite their lack of success versus the Wings, the Avs see a bright spot in the play of David Jones. Jose Theodore is playing for pride now, while the Avs may be without Forsberg, Smyth and Stastny tonight.

Dallas vs. San Jose

The Stars couldn’t muster any more luck last night, as they got into penalty trouble and fell to the Sharks. The Star-Telegram wonders if the bad vibes from the Mavs loss hurt the Stars. The San Jose Mercury News points out that mistakes by Stars veterans Mike Modano and Sergei Zubov dearly cost Dallas. Brandon George writes that the penalties taken by the Stars wore their defenders down.

The Mercury News notes that the Sharks were able to dig deep and play desperate hockey. David Pollak observes that Ron Wilson’s lineup changes seemed to help the Sharks. Mark Purdy also comments on the Sharks desperate play. For the 2nd game in a row, Patrick Marleau scored a short-handed goal.

For Illegal Curve, I’m Kyle Kosior.

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