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|Posted by Talk Hockey on May 21, 2013 at 5:25 PM||comments (0)|
During a game between the London Knights and Portland Winterhawks in the annual Memorial Cup, Max Domi possibly made one of the passes of the year on this amazing through-the-legs dish to Bo Horvat.
Despite his sick pass, the Knights still ended up losing the game 6-3.
Video: Ryan Getzlaf amazing pass to Bobby Ryan
GIF: Grabovski flips the puck up, makes crazy self-pass attempt
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|Posted by Landon Ewaniuk on May 21, 2013 at 3:00 PM||comments (0)|
The NHL playoffs are in full swing, and the 2013 Stanley Cup bracket just got a little smaller after the first round. As the players count down the final flakes of ice sent soaring from their blades, it's time for a quick look at where the playoffs stand.
If you've been napping or perhaps a bit hypothermic on the rink, here are a few story lines worth watching as the last four icy competitors get close to wrapping up the season.
Boston Strong Enough?
The Bruins have what it takes to make a championship run. They have cornered the Rangers in a 2-0 deficit and show no signs of letting up.
With the added emotion of the bombings at the Boston Marathon, Beantown's fan base is storing up energy for what will likely be a furious New York comeback bid on Tuesday night at the Garden.
Expect shadows of the Babe to hang darkly over this one. Nothing like a little New England bad blood to sharpen things up.
Beans and apples. Not much of a meal, but darn good hockey. Could it be a sweep?
Goin' to California
The Sharks made it across some very thin ice in Game 3 to log their first win and avoid an elimination game. They'll have to whet their appetite for royalty to duplicate that feat.
The Kings appeared ready to make this series everything that you don't expect in a 5-seed/6-seed matchup, but what's really intriguing about this pairing is the total absence of jet lag and travel fatigue.
Although they're further apart than NYC and Boston, there's a backyard brawl feel to this series. It's a long drive up and down I-5 between the two venues for this one, but ultimately the series could prove more exciting because of it. There will be great interplay between the fan bases, who will more easily come to watch their teams at either site, and this should make for a thunderous night at center ice when somebody is playing for a fourth win.
Pride from the North...
Canadians are protective of hockey. Americans make fun of Canadian football, revoked one of the two Major League Baseball franchises there, and mock them with "oot" and "aboot".
Now that the Senators are the only Canadian team in the playoffs, expect to see a big surge of national pride building behind the team as they look to even the series with the Penguins.
Canadians don't really do golf, can't accomplish much in basketball, and aren't really known for billiards. Hockey is their thing, and expect a vigorous finish for Ottawa.
...And from the Motor City
The Red Wings hail from a town that is drenched in sports. Yet like the area's economy, most of the Detroit area's sports franchises are, uh, struggling.
The tech sector appears to be breathing some life into the jobs market in Detroit. Could that little breath of life be enough to kick start the Wings into a deep playoff run?
...And from the Windy City
But don't leave Chicago out of the sports pride argument. The Bulls are out of the playoffs, and the Bears are in upheaval. Neither ChiTown baseball team is exactly on fire either. The city's full focus is on what the Blackhawks will do in the playoffs, and fans there are itching to see the Cup back on their doorstep.
Just a few games left. Climb aboard and see where the ice settles.
|Posted by Landon Ewaniuk on May 20, 2013 at 1:45 PM||comments (0)|
The National Hockey Leagues Department of Safety continues to add value to the game by releasing educational videos that highlight both player and spectator safety and explain why referees make certain calls and judgements based on players behaviours. New videos are being unveiled on a regular basis with the aim of broadening NHL fans knowledge and giving players a graphic illustration of how specific infractions are evaluated and what legal manoeuvres are allowed.
NHL has become one of the most popular sports franchises in America and the need to educate players and fans is vital as it can avoid ugly scenes both in the crowd and on the rink. Sports’ betting is also increasingly popular and these videos can aid viewers in understanding why certain infractions are disciplined and others are let slide. If you keen on sports betting, try out the mobile alternative on your smart phone or tablet or if you want to play at some of the best Canadian mobile casino games at MobileCasinoCanada.ca simply register using your mobile device to start gaming.
The most recently released videos by the NHL Department of Safety include the “Contact along the boards” clip and the” Charging” video, both which explain why these actions are not tolerated at certain times and what the penalties for these infractions will be. This makes it safer for both players and fans and players are also able to gauge when actions will be submitted to the board of safety for review. During the course of the season there will be several new videos released that will explain further actions and rules and allow insight into why and when action is taken.
These videos have major benefits for viewers who do not always follow the referee’s calls and the fast pace of the game. The decisions are often made in a split second and these videos aim to simplify the rules of the game by reviewing different scenarios and their outcomes. Often the key components of actions such as charging are blurred so the videos benefit the players in reviewing how their actions are accounted for and what is deemed acceptable or not. By understanding the chemistry of the game it is easier for both players and fans to know what is legal in a contact sport that has an incredibly fast pace and brutal game play.
|Posted by Landon Ewaniuk on May 20, 2013 at 1:25 AM||comments (0)|
The Boston Bruins put forth a complete, dominating effort as they thrashed the New York Rangers 5-2. While at times it seemed as though the Bruins were going to let this one slip through their finger tips, they stood tall and now lead the series 2-0.
The Bruins and Rangers traded goals in the first period. Torey Krug scored his second goal in as many games to give the Bruins the lead. But the lead wouldn't last three minutes as Ryan Callahan cashed in on a Brad Marchand turnover.
That process would repeat itself in the second. Gregory Campbell gave the Bruins the lead just 2:24 into the period, putting a rebound of a Krug shot past Henrik Lundqvist. This time the lead would last just 56 seconds before Rick Nash tied the game. But the Bruins wouldn't let the game enter the third period tied. Johnny Boychuk gave the Bruins the lead.
It didn't take the Bruins very long to extend the lead in the third. Just 26 seconds in Brad Marchand extended the lead to two on a play very similar to his game-winner in Game 1. Milan Lucic finished the scoring, tapping a lose puck past Lundqvist.
Krug had his best game as a Bruin. He scored a goal and added an assist in 12:56. With the way he is playing, its going to be a tough call when Dennis Seidenberg, Andrew Ference or Wade Redden is ready to come back. Krug has provided a nice offensive spark from the back end.
While at times the score may have made this game seem close, the Bruins were in control for most of the game. Aside from the end of the first after Callahan scored, the Bruins had little trouble doing what they wanted. The Bruins were clearly building off the overtime from Game 1 and it showed. They need to continue to build off these performances.
The Bruins and Rangers will play Game 3 on Tuesday night in New York.
Be sure to check out other great articles at Sports Media 101.
|Posted by Landon Ewaniuk on May 19, 2013 at 12:30 AM||comments (0)|
Saturday night's contest was "Must Win" for the San Jose Sharks, a loss would put the team in a deep 3-0 hole against the defending Stanley Cup Champion, Los Angeles Kings and San Jose's season would certainly be over with in LA victory.
Luckily, for the San Jose Sharks the power play was working in Game 3. Just after the ice was cleaned to start the game at 1:34 Dan Boyle caches the first of two crucial powerplay goals on the night for San Jose.
Midway through the first frame, surprising rookie, Tyler Toffoli jumps on turnover and beats sharks goaltender, Antti Niemi using a sneaky Backhand.
For the rest of regulation the goaltending matchup was the story. The San Jose Sharks were given every opportunity to win the game late. As was the case in Game 2, a Los Angeles Kings win, a 5-on-3 advantage drastically altered the outcome of this contest this time in favor of the San Jose Sharks.
Couture's goal came 11 seconds after a 5-on-3 power play expired. Kings defenseman Robyn Regehr was called for hooking Tommy Wingels in the Los Angeles zone with 42 seconds left in regulation, and Trevor Lewis was penalized for goaltender interference after running over Antti Niemi with five seconds left.
Couture, who missed much of the second period with an apparent leg injury, took a pass from Patrick Marleau in the slot and roofed San Jose's 40th shot of the night past goaltender Jonathan Quick to cut the Kings' lead in the best-of-7 series to 2-1. The Sharks can get even by winning Game 4 on Tuesday night (10 p.m. ET, NBCSN, TSN, RDS).
Logan Couture is only the second San Jose Sharks forward to score a goal in the series. The circumstances in which marker happened made it the stuff of legend. Logan Couture came back to literally saved San Jose's season.
The loss marked the seventh straight time Los Angeles Kings have lost at the HP Pavilion in San Jose. Prior to this game LA was riding a six-game winning streak.
I cannot wait to see what happens next in this Battle of California
|Posted by Landon Ewaniuk on May 19, 2013 at 12:25 AM||comments (0)|
It is commonly said that regular season success doesn't always translate to success in the postseason in the NHL.
The Detroit Red Wings proved that with a 4-1 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks in Game 2 of the Western Conference Semifinals. It was the first time that the Blackhawks had lost to the Red Wings in regulation since April 10, 2011.
Since then, the Blackhawks had gone 9-0-2 against the Red Wings, including their Game 1 victory.
Game 2 was almost the polar opposite of the previous game.
"I think we didn't play well in Game 1," Red Wings captain Henrik Zetterberg said. "I think we had a long series [against the Anaheim Ducks in the first round] and it was a little wake-up call that we were in another series, so we wanted to play better today and I think we did."
The wake up appeared to come after Patrick Kane put the Blackhawks up in the first after a defensive breakdown.
The Wings played much better in the first period, despite trailing 1-0, as they outshot the Blackhawks 12-8. The Wings rang up 30 shots on goal after being held to 21 in Game 1, while holding the Blackhawks to just 20 shots after they put 42 on net the previous game.
Damien Brunner got the Wings on the board at 2:40 of the second when he deflected a slap shot from Jakub Kindl past Corey Crawford for his fourth postseason goal.
Brendan Smith, who had drawn a lot of criticism for his poor play and lack of production, silenced his critics by putting the Wings ahead for good at 16:08 of the second. Chicago's Niklas Hjalmarsson attempted to corral a loose puck, but couldn't keep it away from Zetterberg. Zetterberg then dished to an oncoming Smith, who snapped one past Crawford for his second goal of the playoffs.
Johan Franzen added to the lead in the third at 7:19 after he took a long feed from Jonathan Ericsson, and flipped a wrister past Crawford for his fourth goal of the playoffs.
Valtteri Filppula put the game out of reach with his second goal of the playoffs after he beat Crawford with a backhander at 12:03.
"This series is a long ways from over I think. It was a totally different game [today]," Red Wings netminder Jimmy Howard said after stopping 19 of 20 shots. "It seemed like we were able to get in on top of their ‘D’ and get our game plan going, whereas Game 1 after the first period they were all over us. I think it’s going to be Game 3, whoever comes out and executes more and wants the puck more."
The win also injected some confidence into the Red Wings players.
"The whole year I thought we came up just a little short [against them], games were really close, overtime games," Smith said. "So to finally get the first one is nice. I think we've always known that we can beat them."
Game 3 is Monday night in Detroit.
Be sure to check out other great articles at Sports Media 101.
|Posted by Landon Ewaniuk on May 18, 2013 at 5:15 PM||comments (0)|
The finalists for the Jack Adams award for the coach of the year were announced by the NHL on May 17. This season’s nominees are the Anaheim Ducks’ Bruce Boudreau, the Ottawa Senators’ Paul MacLean and the Chicago Blackhawks’ Joel Quenneville. Both Quenneville and Boudreau are former winners of the award. Quenneville won it for the 1999/2000 season when he was head coach of the league-leading St. Louis Blues and Boudreau took it home after the 2007/08 season as coach of the Washington Capitals. MacLean was also nominated for the trophy last season, but he came in second to Ken Hitchcock of the St. Louis Blues in the voting.
If Quenneville or Boudreau happen to beat out MacLean for the award they will become the fifth coach to win it with two different clubs. The only person to win the trophy on three occasions was Pat Burns as he won it with the Boston Bruins, Toronto Maple Leafs and Montreal Canadiens. Boudreau said there are so many good coaches currently in the NHL so it’s an honor to be named as one of the finalists for the award. He said that Quenneville is one of the best hockey caches ever and he and MacLean did a great job with their respective teams this season, especially with all of the injuries the Senators suffered.
Boudreau lost his job with Washington in late 2011 and took over as the Ducks coach in December of that year. He led the Ducks to the Pacific Division championship this season and came in second place in the Western Conference behind Chicago. It was Anaheim’s best regular-season record since they won the Stanley Cup in 2007. Boudreau’s Ducks failed to make the playoffs last season. Veteran forward Teemu Selanne praised his coach by saying that everybody loved playing for Boudreau because he makes all players feel important.
MacLean’s Senators finished seventh in the Eastern Conference this season even though some of the team’s top players were injured. They made the playoffs without forward Jason Spezza and defenseman Erik Karlsson for most of the season. Spezza, the team’s best center, played just five games before undergoing back surgery and Karlsson, a former Norris trophy winner as the NHL’s best defenseman, missed 10 weeks after he tore his Achilles tendon. In addition, goaltender Craig Anderson missed half the season as did forward Milan Michalek. Defenseman Jared Cowen played in just seven games after tearing his labrum. Not only did the Senators make the playoffs, but they knocked off the Eastern conference’s second-place Montreal Canadiens in five games during the first round.
Quenneville coached the Blackhawks to a Stanley Cup triumph in the 2009/10 season, but the team was knocked out of the playoffs in the first round the past two years. The Hawks dominated the league this season as they won the Western Conference and owned the NHL’s best record overall with a 36-7-5 record. Chicago didn’t lose its first game in regulation time until the 24th contest of the 48-game season. Quenneville said he’s pleased to be nominated for the award, but the players are the ones who deserve all the credit as do his assistant coaches.
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