3rd Round Playoff Matchups
Pittsburgh Penguins (4) versus Carolina Hurricanes (6)
- Evgeni Malkin has almost already surpassed his playoff point totals from last season. Sidney Crosby affects the game in so many ways it is scary. Just as their parents would want it, the Staal’s were 50% against each other on face-offs in Game 1. Dave Molinari touches on the Penguins’ defense and its propensity for scoring goals this playoffs. Rob Scuderi may not get on the scoresheet, but he does all the little things that his teammates notice. The NHL has chosen not to suspend Matt Cooke.
- Luke Decock of the News & Observer says the Hurricanes have to be better in every facet of the game tonight. That task could be a lot more difficult, as it appears both Erik Cole and Tuomo Ruutu could miss tonight’s game.
Detroit Red Wings (2) versus Chicago Blackhawks (4)
- Mikael Samuelsson just scores big goals, writes Helene St. James. Samuelsson may be clutch, but Chris Osgood is a salary cap MVP, explains Drew Sharp. Mike Babcock was sure to give his team Wednesday off. After being a healthy scratch for the past three games, it looks like Kirk Maltby will be checking back into the lineup for Game 3. The odds of winning this series seem pretty good for Detroit. Are the Wings destined to repeat?
- The Blackhawks may have lost in overtime on Tuesday, but Versus won with big ratings in the Chicago area. “It’s a goon game now“, says the great Glen Hall about today’s game. Chicago may be down 2-0 but they feel like they were better in Game 2 and still have room to improve. Tim Sassone says the Hawks need to stop turning the puck over so much. Barry Rozner tries to scare Chicago fans by warning them that the Wings haven’t played their best game yet.
Teams that are not in the playoffs:
- Pierre McGuire really wants the GM spot in Minnesota.
- In Boston, Manny Fernandez may be backing off his mid-season comments about retirement being a distinct possibility. Staying with the Bruins, Peter Chiarelli has been selected Executive of the Year.
- The more you read, the more you think Patrick Roy is on his way to the NHL, probably with the Avalanche.
- Jim Day will apparently no longer be a part of Fox Sports Ohio’s Columbus Blue Jackets coverage next season.
- Mike Richards comments on the difficulties of having two shoulders surgically repaired in the same summer.
The Coyotes situation:
- The National Post tells you everything you need to know about the Coyotes issue.
- Mediation 101 courtesy of the National Post as well.
- Looks like there could be a local buyer in Phoenix that could bid on the team if given the chance. (Writer’s note: After looking at these numbers, I’m not so sure anyone would want to do that.)
- Phoenix versus Canada.
- This whole Coyotes situation reminds Damien Cox of the Saskatoon controversy from years back.
- Regardless of what everyone else is saying, Balsillie sure seems confident that his dream will come true.
The AHL Playoffs:
- The Moose’s ten-game winning streak came to an end last night, as the Houston Aeros won Game 4 of the Western Conference Final by a score of 5-4.
- A rib injury will keep Byron Bitz out of the Providence Bruins lineup for the remainder of the AHL playoffs.