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Thread: 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs

  1. #101
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    I can't believe that Chicago's defense is so indifferent towards what's going on in their territory. Russian team would have made short work of such bad defense.

  2. #102
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drax View Post
    I can't believe that Chicago's defense is so indifferent towards what's going on in their territory. Russian team would have made short work of such bad defense.
    The Hawks haven't looked like the Hawks for the last seven periods.
    They've been outscored 15-5 since the last minute of the second period in game 2.
    Since getting blown out at home in game 2 the Hawks look intimidated by the Kings.
    With both the Kings and Rangers up 3-1 in their respective series a NY-LA Stanley Cup final looks almost certain.
    LA vs NY for the Cup....yep, that's Gary Bettman's wet dream for sure.

  3. #103
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    I don't think the Russian team would stand a chance against any of the four remaining NHL teams in a best of seven. The level of play in the conference finals has been well above what I saw in any of the IIHF WC games. Not even close.

  4. #104
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    Both Rinne and Bobrovski are better goalkeepers than Crawford and the poor excuse for defensive play that Chicago plays at the moment makes me wonder about the ability of Blackhawks to successfuly resist the offense led by Ovechkin and Malkin. Kopitar and Gaborik are good, but not that good and they make Chicago looking ridiculous.

  5. #105
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drax View Post
    Both Rinne and Bobrovski are better goalkeepers than Crawford and the poor excuse for defensive play that Chicago plays at the moment makes me wonder about the ability of Blackhawks to successfuly resist the offense led by Ovechkin and Malkin. Kopitar and Gaborik are good, but not that good and they make Chicago looking ridiculous.
    Bobrovski better than Crawford?
    Debatable.
    I think Marc is right...there is a reason why Ovechkin and Malkin were even available for the Russians.
    OV's Caps didn't even make the playoffs and Gino's Penguinos were shown the door by the Rangers.
    And speaking of Malkin and the Penguins, they looked every bit as weak and ineffectual against NY in their final three games of that series vs NY as Chicago has looked in their last three against LA.
    With all due respect to the WHC participants including champion Russia, there isn't a team in the world playing better hockey than the LA Kings right now.

  6. #106
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    May 27, 2014: Montreal Canadiens 7, New York Rangers 4
    New York Rangers lead series 3-2

    15 minutes of HD highlights here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5r3xvK6QNbg

    A b.s. penalty 22 seconds in (yet more poor officiating) started things for Montreal, and they scored right away. Montreal led 4-1, the Rangers tied it 4-4, and then Montreal pulled away. TSN, NHL Network, and NBC Sports commentators and analysts, as well as ex-NHL referee Kerry Fraser, who writes a blog on officiating for TSN, have all stated that the Canadiens are, as a team, engaging in mass embellishment and diving, and are getting away with it. Fraser went so far as to call the Canadiens' conduct "unmanly."

    Full recap here from the Canadian Press, reprinted for educational, discussion and archival purposes:
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    MONTREAL -- Rene Bourque scored three goals as the Montreal Canadiens chased goalie Henrik Lundqvist and defeated the New York Rangers 7-4 on Tuesday to stave off elimination in the NHL Eastern Conference final.

    The Rangers, who lead the best-of-seven series 3-2, will have another chance to book a trip to the Stanley Cup final in Game 6 on Thursday night in New York.

    Bourque's second goal proved to be the game-winner and came just after the Rangers came back to tie the game at 4-4 in the second period.

    "Everybody was ready for this game," said Bourque. "We knew the situation. We got a big power-play goal early and a few others.

    "It was just a see-saw battle back and forth. (Dale) Weise made a great play to me. I called for the puck and somehow it got through. It was nice to get in there."

    Alex Galchenyuk, Tomas Plekanec and Max Pacioretty also scored for Montreal, which outshot the Rangers 28-27

    Derek Stepan, playing with a guard on his helmet to protect a broken jaw suffered from a Brandon Prust hit in Game 3, returned to the lineup to score twice for the Rangers. Chris Kreider had a goal and three assists and Rick Nash also scored.

    "It was just a strange game," said Rangers coach Alain Vigneault. "It was a different game from what we've seen so far in the series, but now we're going home."

    At 10:41 of the third, Rangers defenceman John Moore was given a major penalty and was ejected for a blindside, open ice hit on Dale Weise that was almost identical to Prust's hit on Stepan. Weise was wobbly when he got up and went for treatment, but returned to the bench late in the period.

    "The league will do what it has to do," Vigneault said of the hit. "John is not the type of person who would try to hurt someone, but it was a late hit."

    It was a night of strange bounces and spotty goaltending, even if New York's best chance of the game saw Carl Hagelin's shot stopped by the end of Dustin Tokarski's stick midway through the first period.

    Lundqvist was pulled in favour of Cam Talbot after allowing four goals on 18 shots, while Tokarski stayed in despite allowing four on his first 14.

    Tokarski was especially strong in the third period through a string of New York power plays.

    "Everybody talks about how (Lundqvist) is a great goalie: Has he been better than (Tokarski) this series?" asked Bourque. "I don't think so.

    "(Tokarski) made some big saves for us too. We had a couple bad bounces but our power play was the difference. We got some traction, got a couple goals in tight."

    The Rangers did a good job of cancelling the initial rush Montreal gets from its pre-game buildup in winning the opening two games of the series, but Ginette Reno's O Canada worked to plan this time.

    Only 22 seconds in, Kreider was sent off for tripping and the Canadiens converted when Galchenyuk tipped in P.K. Subban's point shot from the edge of the crease at 1:48.

    Stepan tied it at 10:44 of the first on a 30-foot shot off a rush that fooled Tokarski. Plekanec restored the lead with a similar goal at 12:24 as he swiped the puck between two defenders and saw it beat Lundqvist.

    The second period was a festival of goals.

    Pacioretty got it started on a gritty feed from Brendan Gallagher at 3:44 and Bourque gave Montreal a three-goal lead when he spun and scored from close range. That chased Lundqvist.

    Nash whipped a puck at the Montreal net and saw it go in off defenceman Andrei Markov's skate 9:48, Stepan got his second in a mass scramble in front of Tokarski at 12:06 and Kreider tied it on a power play at 14:12 on a tic-tac-toe play after Subban lost his stick.

    The Bell Centre went quiet, but exploded again when Bourque got his second at 15:10 as he beat Talbot from 10 feet out.

    Several hats were thrown on the ice after Weise sent Bourque in alone to get his third of the game 6:33 into the third period. Desharnais scored into an empty net during a New York power play at 15:43 and crowd sang Ole Ole in celebration.

    "I think you're starting to see us playing Montreal Canadiens hockey," said Pacioretty. "I don't think you've really seen it in this series just yet. It was great to see a little taste of it. I think we still have more. I think we still have little things to work on. And it should be a fun one going back there."

  7. #107
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    May 26, 2014: Los Angeles Kings 5, Chicago Blackhawks 2
    Los Angeles leads series 3-1

    15 minutes of HD highlights here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7LaRl9tsV64


    Full recap here from the Canadian Press, reprinted for educational, discussion and archival purposes:
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    LOS ANGELES -- The ovations started after the Los Angeles Kings' third goal in 16 minutes to open Game 4 of the Western Conference final, and the home crowd eventually serenaded its team off the ice for intermission.

    The low-scoring Kings have become the Stanley Cup playoffs' highest-scoring team. This defensive powerhouse is shutting down the Chicago Blackhawks' big stars while pushing the defending champions to the verge of elimination.

    Yep, the Kings deserved a hand -- even if they insist they still haven't anything that's really worth cheering.

    Jake Muzzin, Marian Gaborik and captain Dustin Brown scored in a dominant first period, and Los Angeles beat Chicago 5-2 Monday night to take a 3-1 series lead.

    Muzzin and Drew Doughty each had a goal and an assist, and Jonathan Quick made 22 saves as the Kings moved to the brink of their second trip to the Stanley Cup Final in three seasons with their third straight win over the defending champion Blackhawks.

    Gaborik, who joined the Kings on March 5 and immediately catalyzed their offence, took a momentary break from the businesslike atmosphere of the Kings' dressing room and just plain marveled what Los Angeles has accomplished this spring.

    "To come into every game with that confidence, to have that mojo that you can win every game, that's the difference," Gaborik said. "It's great to come to a team like this and be part of a winning culture."

    Tanner Pearson added an empty-net goal for the Kings, who have been to the NHL finals just twice in franchise history, winning their only title in 2012. One year after Los Angeles lost the conference finals in five games to Chicago, the Kings have their own chance to close it out in five.

    Game 5 is Wednesday in Chicago.

    "We're not looking ahead," Kings forward Justin Williams said. "Chicago, I believe they've been down 3-1 before. Every team has been through experiences that have made them better. Stanley Cup championship teams like Chicago and us, we've been through a lot. We've persevered through a lot, and they're down 3-1, we're trying to squash them, and they're trying to get some life."

    Two days after the Kings gritted out a 4-3 victory over Chicago in Game 3, they won again at Staples Center by scoring three goals on their first six shots of Game 4, capping an incredible three-game offensive performance by the lowest-scoring NHL team to make the post-season.

    After trailing 2-0 late in the second period of Game 2, Los Angeles scored 13 goals in less than 100 minutes, capped by a dominant first period in Game 4.

    Muzzin scored on a power play. Gaborik added his 10th goal of the post-season off Duncan Keith's turnover. Brown banged a puck into an open net for another power-play goal, his first score since Game 7 of the first round against San Jose.

    Cue the standing ovations.

    Brandon Saad and Bryan Bickell scored and Corey Crawford stopped 16 shots for the Blackhawks, who didn't get rolling until they trailed 4-0 late in the second period.

    "I don't think we played that poorly," Chicago captain Jonathan Toews said. "We made some mistakes, and their confidence snowballed on us. Next thing you know, it doesn't matter how hard you work or how many shifts you spend in their zone. If the bounces aren't going your way, it's tough to get back in a game like this. We're going to find a way to get those bounces again and get things rolling our way. We'll work ourselves out of it."

    The Blackhawks escaped a 3-1 hole in the second round against Detroit last season, but that's the only time in franchise history Chicago has rallied from that deficit -- and the Kings are an entirely different post-season challenge.

    "It's not a good position to be in," said Patrick Kane, who assisted on Bickell's goal for his first point in the series. "Coming into this series, we'd be lying if we thought we'd be in this position, but it happens. Got no one to blame but ourselves, so we're the only ones that can get ourselves out of it."

    After their dominant opening period, the Kings kept pressing in the second, and Doughty put a long shot through traffic midway through the period. Doughty, the Kings' leader in ice time, has goals in back-to-back games after scoring just once in the first 16 playoff games.

    Chicago finally beat Quick when Saad scored on a backhand. The Kings sat back on defence to start the third period, and Bickell got just his second goal in eight games when he jumped on a loose puck in the slot with 10:31 to play.

  8. #108
    IHF Member Conesy's Avatar
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    Michal Handzus scored in double overtime to both give Chicago a 5-4 victory and keep their season alive
    Twitter: @CSmeeth

  9. #109
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    Quote Originally Posted by Conesy View Post
    Michal Handzus scored in double overtime to both give Chicago a 5-4 victory and keep their season alive
    Much like the Montreal-Rangers game the night before, the defensive coverage for both teams was suspect and the goaltending pretty shaky for the first 40 minutes.
    From the third period on things tightened up considerably as Corey Crawford recovered from a poor start to actually play a large role in OT making several timely saves before the GWG.
    Now the challenge for Chicago is to steal one in LA, where they had not played well at all in the two previous games there.

  10. #110
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    May 28, 2014: Chicago Blackhawks 5, Los Angeles Kings 4 (Double OT)
    Los Angeles leads series 3-2

    13 minutes of HD highlights here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bQmMkQzKGNY

    From the Canadian Press, reprinted here for educational, discussion & archival purposes:
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    CHICAGO -- Michal Handzus is every day of 37 years old and 15 seasons in the NHL. He knows he's near the end of his career. He knows he's slower than most of his Chicago teammates.

    He also knows how to finish a play in a big spot.

    Handzus scored at 2:04 of the second overtime, and the Blackhawks beat the Los Angeles Kings 5-4 in Game 5 on Wednesday night to stay alive in the Western Conference final.

    Brandon Saad made a nice pass to the middle, and the oldest player on the ice beat goaltender Jonathan Quick with a backhander for his second goal of the playoffs. The Slovak centre celebrated by pounding the boards behind the net as the sellout crowd of 21,871 roared.

    "Saad, two guys went on him and I got open," Handzus said. "I was surprised I got open like that but he waited and waited and gave me a great pass."

    Handzus has been all over Chicago's lines all season long as the Blackhawks searched for a second-line centre behind captain Jonathan Toews. His biggest value right now is on the penalty kill, but it was his offence that kept alive Chicago's title defence.

    "I want to help the team as much as I can," Handzus said. "I'm playing on the PK a lot. I'm not playing very well offensively. I'm glad I came through."

    Saad had a goal and two assists to help Chicago stop a three-game losing streak. Brent Seabrook, Johnny Oduya and Ben Smith also scored, and Patrick Kane set a playoff career high with four assists.

    "Personally, I thought Saader was the best player on the ice tonight," Kane said. "He was bringing so much speed and puck protection."

    Game 6 is Friday night in Los Angeles.

    "We go home and we come out with a better effort," Kings defenceman Jake Muzzin said. "We've got some experience and veterans in here who know what it takes to stop it."

    Marian Gaborik and Dustin Brown each had a goal and an assist, and Jarret Stoll and Tanner Pearson also scored for the Kings, who led 4-3 after two periods. It was Gaborik's NHL-best 11th playoff goal.

    Quick and Chicago's Corey Crawford each stopped 40 shots.

    Los Angeles was in position to advance to its second Stanley Cup final in three years before Smith drove to the net and swept in a rebound 1:17 into the third. Smith's third goal of the playoffs set the stage for a frantic finish as both sides pushed for the winning score.

    "It's not easy," Kings forward Justin Williams said. "Attaining your ultimate goal is never easy and we're going to do our best to get it done."

    Quick made a solid stop on Marian Hossa in overtime, and the loose puck was swept away by the Kings. Los Angeles star Anze Kopitar had a chance to win it about 9 minutes into the first overtime but his shot went off the side of the net.

    Crawford had a kick save on Stoll in the first OT after Toews turned it over in the Blackhawks' zone.

    "Overtime, I've seen a lot of games, been involved in a lot of games," said Chicago coach Joel Quenneville, a former NHL defenceman. "That might have been the greatest overtime I've seen."

    Back at home for Game 5 after a disastrous stay in Los Angeles, the Blackhawks put together a terrific start. But the Kings weathered the storm and then stepped up their attack in the last part of the first period.

    Seabrook, Oduya and Saad helped the Blackhawks to a 3-1 lead just 11:06 into the game. Chicago's second line of Saad, Andrew Shaw and Kane was a headache for Los Angeles all night long, creating numerous high-quality scoring chances.

    But the Kings grabbed the momentum back with a terrific sequence with 7 minutes left in the first. Quick made a great stop on Toews, and Kopitar set up Gaborik at the other end to get the Kings within one.

    It was reminiscent of Game 2, when Quick denied Seabrook on a 2-on-1 and the Kings went on to score six straight goals in a 6-2 victory.

    This time around, Brown had a nice rebound goal after Crawford made a great save on Gaborik, and Pearson made it 4-3 with a wrist shot from the right circle at 13:08 of second. Pearson deftly used Blackhawks defenceman Niklas Hjalmarsson as a screen on his fourth goal of the playoffs.

    Quick also had an outstanding save on Saad from inside the goal early in the second.

    Pearson's goal stunned the crowd, but it woke up again when Saad's perfectly timed shot set up Smith's tying score. Saad had a plus-4 rating in almost 24 minutes of ice time in one of the best games of his young career.

    NOTES: Los Angeles police say they are investigating a battery report from a fan who says Crawford sprayed water in his face during Game 4 at Staples Center. The report alleges Crawford used a water bottle to spray the face of the heckling fan, who was thrown out of the arena and later filed the complaint with police. ... Kings D Robyn Regehr missed his 11th straight game with a knee injury.

  11. #111
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    May 29, 2014: New York Rangers 1, Montreal Canadiens 0
    New York Rangers win series 4-2

    15 minutes of HD highlights here, including the only goal, Lundqvist's Hasek-like rolling save off of Vanek, the handshakes, and the presentation of the Prince of Wales Trophy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bziy6QcoKXc

    From the Canadian Press, reprinted here for educational, discussion & archival purposes:
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    NEW YORK -- On a night where something special was needed, the New York Rangers produced and the Montreal Canadiens didn't.

    As a consequence, the Rangers are headed to their first Stanley Cup final in 20 years. And the Canadiens are going home, experiencing a dark cocktail of emotions after falling two wins short.

    Dominic Moore scored late in the second period and Henrik Lundqvist made 18 saves as the Rangers dispatched Montreal 1-0 on Thursday to win the Eastern Conference final four games to two.

    "We played, in my book, probably our best game of the playoffs," said Rangers coach Alain Vigneault.

    The Canadiens didn't. New York outshot Montreal 32-18, with the Habs putting just five shots on goal in the third period of a game that was not as close as the score sounds.

    It was night and day compared to the Canadiens' 7-4 win Tuesday at the Bell Centre.

    "It's tough because we're so close. And we're right there," said Montreal defenceman Josh Gorges. "I'm a little bit lost for words because I'm still trying to process this. I'm still stunned. It's tough."

    Montreal sniper Max Pacioretty was brutally frank in the wake of the loss.

    "A night like tonight, our backs were against the wall," he said. "We've been in that position before but there in the third period it almost seemed like -- myself especially -- guys were panicking. We got away from our game."

    New York really had a go at Montreal in the third, buzzing young goalie Dustin Tokarski's net. The Canadiens did not get a shot on net for the first nine minutes and were back on their heels the entire period.

    "The third period, I think we played our best period of the playoffs," said Lundqvist. "When it mattered the most, guys really stepped up."

    While the Canadiens missed passes and made bad decisions, the workmanlike Rangers did the little things right. Their finishing could have been better but didn't need to be given Montreal's sputtering offence.

    "We gave them one chance in the first, four in the second, and nothing in the third," said Vigneault. "Shouldn't have been a 1-0 game, but you have to give their goaltender a lot of credit. He played outstanding."

    So was Lundqvist, who was pulled in the second period of Game 5 after giving up four goals on 19 shots. He returned to world-class form when he needed to be.

    The breakthrough came after the Rangers' fourth line bottled the Habs up in their own end near the end of the second period. Boyle, left all alone behind the goal, sent a pass through defenceman Francis Bouillon and Moore snapped a shot past Tokarski on the stick side at 18:07 for his third of the playoffs.

    Defenceman Ryan McDonagh also drew an assist, his 10th of the playoffs.

    The Rangers' last appearance in the final was 1994 when they defeated the Vancouver Canucks in seven games for their first title in 54 years. The Canadiens have not appeared in the final since 1993 when they dispatched the Los Angeles Kings in five games.

    New York will face either defending champion Chicago or the Kings, both formidable foes, as the final kicks off Wednesday in the West.

    Vigneault showed faith in his fourth line, starting the game with Moore, Brian Boyle and Derek Dorsett. They repaid him with the key goal on a night that saw the Rangers play with more urgency than the Canadiens before an amped crowd at Madison Square Garden.

    Tokarski was busier than Lundqvist but the Swede was spectacular in the second period when he made an amazing circus-like save with his arm and then blocker off Thomas Vanek. The save had a degree of difficulty that would have done an Olympic diver proud as the Rangers goalie, losing his stick in the process, corkscrewed his body to stop the close-range shot that deflected off a diving defenceman.

    Asked what he thought of the play, Vigneault replied: "Same thing you did. Wow."

    The Rangers scored soon after.

    Streamers flew through the air as the final whistle blew. The normally calm Lundqvist threw his arms in the air and was mobbed by his teammates. The crowd chanted "WE WANT THE CUP!!!!"

    With Brad Richards and Martin St. Louis, who won the Cup together a decade ago with Tampa, leading the decision-making process, the Rangers elected not to touch the Prince of Wales Trophy that goes to the Eastern Conference champion.

    It's been quite a journey for the Rangers who started the season 3-6 on the road as Madison Square Garden underwent massive renovations. Asked what he would have said if someone had told him in October that his team would go to the Cup final, Vigneault laughed.

    "In October?" he asked. "Probably I would have said what are you smoking?"

    Vigneault, in his first year as New York's coach, offered a calmer, different message than the fiery John Tortorella. It helped keep the train on track.

    Montreal also came together under fire. While there may be cause for celebration down the line, the season ends with regrets and questions.

    "We made some big progress this year," said coach Michel Therrien. "I'm proud of this hockey team. We battled hard through the regular season and we battled hard in the playoffs."

    Pacioretty pointed to the emotional seven-game win over Boston in the series before.

    "You have success against a team like that, maybe you feel too good about yourself," he said. ""It's hard to pinpoint exactly what went wrong. But that could be one of them. Because we feel like we could have matched up pretty good against the Rangers but obviously didn't put up the effort we needed."

    Losing the first two games at home proved to be an obstacle Montreal couldn't overcome.

    "We played our hearts out for two series and then have a little bit of a letdown this series and it's too late," Pacioretty lamented.

    Game 7 would have been Saturday night at the Bell Centre.

    For Montreal, it was a disappointing end to a surprising playoff run that won fans across the country as Canada's lone team in the post-season came within two wins of making the Stanley Cup final.

    "Let's push for a game 7!", [Canadian] Prime Minister Stephen Harper tweeted before the game.

    But the Canadiens, who lost star goalie Carey Price in Game 1, could not rise to the occasion. Therrien said after the game they expected Price would have been ready for Game 1 of the final.

    But the Habs had only praise for the 24-year-old goalie they call Ticker.

    "Tokarski played unbelievable, especially tonight," said Pacioretty. "That game could easily have been 4 or 5-0. They outplayed us tonight and he kept us in the game -- 1-0 is a very misleading score for that game."

    Tokarski said he was proud of his performance, adding he thought everyone on the team felt the same about their play.

    "But it's still bitter and it sucks right now," he said.

    Tokarski went to the bench with 1:53 remaining and Lundqvist made a big save with his torso.

    Montreal used its timeout as Led Zeppelin and then Frank Sinatra rang around the arena.

    The win was the 42nd of Lundqvist's playoff career, moving the 32-year-old past Mike Richter for the franchise lead. Richter backstopped the Blueshirts to the '94 Cup.

    It was also his ninth playoff shutout, tying him with Richter for the team lead.

    Lundqvist has a history of bouncing back from off nights. He was 5-2 with a .930 save percentage in games after a Rangers' loss this post-season.

    "It's been tough .. I kept telling myself all day believe in what you're doing," said Lundqvist, looking like he had just walked off the set of "The Great Gatsby" in a charcoal pinstripe suit and plaid tie.

    Both teams had to adjust their lineups for Game 6.

    The Rangers were without defenceman John Moore, starting a two-game suspension for a hit on Dale Weise. Ex-Hab Raphael Diaz started in his place in the third defensive pairing.

    Brandon Prust returned from suspension for Montreal but Weise and defenceman Alexei Emelin were both out. Therrien said Weise, flattened by Moore last time out, was not suffering from a head injury but declined to elaborate. Emelin sat out Game 5 with an unannounced injury.

    The Rangers came out like men on a mission, outshooting the Habs 4-0 before Montreal captain Brian Gionta was called for goalie interference at 4:15. The Habs were incensed at the call, believing that Gionta was high-sticked on the play.

    At one point early on two Canadiens lost their sticks at the same time in their own zone. It took Montreal almost 8 minutes to get its first shot on goal, a weak effort from Max Pacioretty.

    While Lundqvist lazed, Tokarski was stopping one shot after another -- some that he knew very little about. His mask took the brunt of one shot.

    The Canadiens didn't get their second shot until some 15 minutes into the period. But it was dangerous, forcing a good Lundqvist blocker save off Alex Galchenyuk as Montreal cooped the Rangers up in their own end.

    Montreal was outshot 11-5 in the first period and were lucky not to trail after 20 minutes. Each team had eight shots in the second period.

    A slashing penalty to Prust with 5:42 remaining in the game did not help the Montreal cause. But it delighted the crowd.

    The rest before the Cup final will be welcomed by the Rangers. They went seven games in each of the previous two rounds, wasting a 3-2 lead against Philadelphia and rallying from 3-1 down to dispatch the Penguins.
    Last edited by Marc Brunengraber; 30-05-2014 at 17:31.

  12. #112
    IHF Staff Marc Brunengraber's Avatar
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    All you can ever ask as a sports fan is for your team to play their guts out and bleed to try and win, regardless of the odds and the obstacles. This year's NY Rangers team has done that. Honestly didn't know if I'd live to ever see them play for the Cup again, but here it is. They'll be the underdogs regardless of who they face, but, win or lose, they are the Eastern Conference champions and hold the Prince of Wales trophy, and I can say I'm proud to be a Ranger fan today. Win or lose, I'll still say this is a team worth cheering for. Let's go Rangers, one more hill to climb!

  13. #113
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marc Brunengraber View Post
    All you can ever ask as a sports fan is for your team to play their guts out and bleed to try and win, regardless of the odds and the obstacles. This year's NY Rangers team has done that. Honestly didn't know if I'd live to ever see them play for the Cup again, but here it is. They'll be the underdogs regardless of who they face, but, win or lose, they are the Eastern Conference champions and hold the Prince of Wales trophy, and I can say I'm proud to be a Ranger fan today. Win or lose, I'll still say this is a team worth cheering for. Let's go Rangers, one more hill to climb!
    The series turned around right in the first two games, a 7-2 Ranger blowout followed by a 3-1 loss both in Montreal.
    The Habs never could overcome that.
    But where the series was decided I think was game 4.
    Montreal won game 3 in OT and could have done the same in game 4 but lost in OT putting them down 3-1 instead of tied 2-2.
    That loss left Montreal in the same position they were from the start, scrambling to come from behind.
    They won game 5 at home in an uncharacteristically poor game for Henrik Lundqvist but finally lost the series in a 1-0 goaltender battle that Lundqvist eventually came out on top.
    And speaking of goaltending, it has to be said that Montreal did NOT lose this series because of the loss of Carey Price.
    No, the kid was all right...Montreal lost the series because they had too many passengers and too many players in prolonged scoring slumps who weren't contributing.
    And the Rangers 4th line was a difference maker.

  14. #114
    IHF Member Conesy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heatleysucks View Post
    No, the kid was all right...Montreal lost the series because they had too many passengers and too many players in prolonged scoring slumps who weren't contributing.
    The first name that really comes to mind is Vanek
    Twitter: @CSmeeth

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    Yeah, Vanek has been a no show. I don't think he's been effective for any of his...let me see...3 (?) NHL teams this season and he was equally unimpressive at the Olympics. Who is going to pay big coin for this guy ?

    Re the Habs - I can't stand the diving and PK Subban is one of the worst offenders...I can't cheer for them or him for that reason.

  16. #116
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    Chicago wins 4-3 on a Patrick Kane goal within the last 4 minutes in the game. The deciding game will be played on Sunday.
    Twitter: @CSmeeth

  17. #117
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    Quote Originally Posted by Conesy View Post
    Chicago wins 4-3 on a Patrick Kane goal within the last 4 minutes in the game. The deciding game will be played on Sunday.
    Gotta give it to Kane...this kid is CLUTCH!
    I thought going into game 6 whoever would win would take the series.
    For the Kings it was a chance to close it out at home but they couldn't get it done.
    The Hawks are going to be very tough to beat at home after evening up the series after being down 3-1.

  18. #118
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    Norwegian star & Rangers' forward Mats Zuccarello told Norwegian news outlet VG that winning the Stanley Cup would be a greater achievement than winning a Gold Medal in the Olympics or World Championships......yet another example to shatter the myth that European players don't care about the Stanley Cup as much as North American players do.

  19. #119
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    May 30, 2014: Chicago Blackhawks 4, Los Angeles Kings 3
    Series tied 3-3

    15 minutes of HD highlights here: http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=JpQyCoKbVyI

    From the Canadian Press, reprinted here for educational, discussion & archival purposes:
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    LOS ANGELES -- Patrick Kane skated to a patch of open ice near the painted Stanley Cup logo and fired a long, low shot at the Los Angeles net, hoping to hit an invisible hole.

    His Chicago Blackhawks teammates weren't shocked when he found it.

    Kane's career has been defined by his brilliance in the Blackhawks' biggest moments, and his tiebreaking goal with 3:45 to play in Game 6 of the Western Conference finals will rank among the best.

    "There's still not much room out there in this series," Kane said. "Right now, you have to take advantage of your opportunities when you do get space."

    Almost nobody seizes an opportunity like Kane, who scored two goals and set up Duncan Keith's tying goal with 8:26 left as the Blackhawks forced a decisive seventh game with a 4-3 victory over the Los Angeles Kings on Friday night.

    Game 7 is Sunday night in Chicago. The winner hosts the New York Rangers on Wednesday night.

    After trailing with less than nine minutes to play in Game 6, the defending Stanley Cup champion Blackhawks avoided elimination for the second straight game in an already memorable playoff series between two NHL powers at the top of their games. Chicago is heading home with a chance to advance thanks to the forward who saves his best for the brightest lights.

    "It's amazing what he can do in these big games when our season is on the line," Chicago captain Jonathan Toews said about Kane. "Nobody else seems to be able to do it the same way he does. It's pretty amazing."

    Kane, who won the Conn Smythe Trophy last season, had one point in the series' first four games. He has scored seven more in Chicago's consecutive dramatic victories, capped by Kane's dangle for a seeing-eye goal past Jonathan Quick, the 2012 Conn Smythe winner.

    "I didn't see anything off the rush," Kane said. "I took it up the line and tried to get a shot through. I think (Andrew Shaw) was in front getting a great screen. Luckily, it went in."

    The conference finals rematch between the NHL's last two champions will be decided in a winner-take-all Game 7 -- the third of the post-season for the Kings, who are 6-0 in elimination games this spring.

    Both teams blew late leads in the third period, and Drew Doughty was primed to be Los Angeles' hero with a tying goal and a tiebreaking assist on Alec Martinez's score with 12:22 left. But after Kane took control, Corey Crawford came up with several late saves as Chicago hung on.

    "There is the 'Wow' factor in this series, especially the last two games," Chicago coach Joel Quenneville said. "We've got two competitive teams that have experience in the situation. It's been amazing. I mean, as good as it gets."

    Chicago trailed 3-1 in the conference finals after its second straight loss at Staples Center on Monday, but the Blackhawks prolonged the series with an epic double-overtime victory in Game 5.

    Crawford made 26 saves and exchanged harsh words with counterpart Jonathan Quick as the Blackhawks won for the ninth time in their last 11 elimination games.

    Dwight King scored an early goal and Doughty played 26 minutes in another dynamic game for the Kings, who were half a period away from clinching their second trip to the Stanley Cup finals in three years.

    "I'm frustrated, but I'm over it pretty quickly," Doughty said. "And we've got another game to play, Game 7. We've had two chances to close out this series, and we are not going to blow a third one."

    Chicago led 2-1 entering the third after getting goals from Kane and Ben Smith early in the second period, and Staples Center echoed with worry until Doughty tied it with 14:28 left with a wrist shot past a screened Crawford for his third goal in four games.

    Doughty then fed Martinez for a low shot through traffic, putting the Kings ahead 3-2 and setting off a deafening celebration. A few minutes later, it turned to silence when Keith and Kane beat Quick.

    "We get the privilege of playing with a guy like that every day and seeing what he can do," Keith said of Kane. "You know when it comes down to crunch time, him and Johnny (Toews), I don't know if there are two other guys I'd rather have on my team."

    But Kane was just one problem for Los Angeles' normally solid defence, which gave up numerous scoring chances.

    "I feel like I'm a broken record here, but we've got to be sharp in our own end," Martinez said. "We weren't making plays that we normally make. We've got to be quick to contact on them. We weren't very sharp."

    Crawford exchanged contact and angry words after the second-period horn with Quick, who had just been hit by Shaw. Crawford shook his glove and blocker at his waist, miming his willingness to fight.

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    Kane is a superb scorer, but one could grow a beard waiting for him to pass the puck or help in defense.

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    And by all accounts, he's a jerk of a person. Doesn't matter - he's one of the premier goalscorers in the world, and he has proven that he scores clutch goals over and over again in big moments. It's why he makes the money he makes and has 2 Stanley Cup rings in the past 4 years.

  22. #122
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    June 1, 2014: Los Angeles Kings 5, Chicago 4 (OT)
    Los Angeles wins series 4-3

    NOTE: I will provide video highlights as soon as they are available!

    From the Canadian Press, reprinted here for educational, discussion & archival purposes:
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    CHICAGO -- When it comes to Game 7, Los Angeles truly is the king of the road.

    Alec Martinez scored at 5:47 of overtime, and the Kings beat the Chicago Blackhawks 5-4 on Sunday night to advance to the Stanley Cup Final for the second time in three years.

    Los Angeles improved to 7-0 in elimination games with its third Game 7 win on the road this post-season. It will host the New York Rangers in Game 1 on Wednesday night.

    "We've battled back so many times this year and so many times in these playoffs, we said, 'Why not again today?"' said Justin Williams, who had a goal and an assist. "It was a total team effort, every single guy here giving everything they've got."

    Martinez's shot went off Blackhawks defenceman Nick Leddy and fluttered over goalie Corey Crawford, stunning the sellout crowd at the United Center and leading to a wild on-ice celebration for Los Angeles. Leddy and Crawford were hunched over as the Kings gathered in a big huddle along the boards.

    "I didn't really see it go in," Martinez said. "I know it went off a couple bodies. I just tried to get it through and fortunately it went in."

    Patrick Sharp scored twice for the Blackhawks, who blew a 2-0 lead. Brandon Saad had a goal and an assist, and Patrick Kane had two more assists.

    Chicago's loss means Detroit remains the last NHL team to win consecutive titles in 1997 and 1998.

    "I've lost some tough games but nothing like tonight," Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said.

    The Kings became the first team to play 21 games through the first three rounds of the playoffs and make it to the NHL finals. The 2002 Avalanche and 1993 Maple Leafs also played the maximum amount of games through three series, but they lost in Game 7 of the conference championships.

    Los Angeles is the only team to play all three of those Game 7s on the road.

    "You need everybody when you get to Game 7. You're not into the individual part of it," Kings coach Darryl Sutter said. "There's always guys that score big goals, make big plays. But you need everybody in your lineup."

    Tyler Toffoli had a goal and an assist for the Kings, who once held a 3-1 lead in the series, only to have the Blackhawks come back to force Game 7. Jeff Carter scored his ninth playoff goal in the first, and Marian Gaborik had the tying goal midway through the third period.

    The Kings also got 37 saves from Jonathan Quick in another resilient performance for Sutter's team. Los Angeles trailed San Jose 3-0 in its first-round series and was down 3-2 to top-seeded Anaheim in the second round before rallying each time.

    "It's just a great group to be part of," Quick said. "I feel very fortunate to be with the guys. Obviously our journey's not done yet and we've got a lot of work here coming up. New York's an awesome team. They beat great teams, so they're battle-tested as well so we've got a lot to get ready for."

    Gaborik, Williams and Mike Richards each improved to 7-0 in Game 7s. Sutter moved to 7-3 in such games, breaking a tie with Blackhawks adviser Scotty Bowman and Pat Burns for the NHL record for most coaching wins in Game 7s.

    Sharp sent a big power-play drive past Quick to give the Blackhawks a 4-3 lead at 18:25 of the second. But Gaborik responded with his NHL-best 12th playoff goal [with] 7:17 [remaining in] the third, setting the stage for a frantic finish to regulation.

    Quick turned away prime opportunities for Sharp and Bryan Bickell before he made a terrific save on Andrew Shaw in the final seconds. Dustin Brown had a great rush to the net for Los Angeles that he nearly completed for a breathtaking score.

    Jonathan Toews also scored for the Blackhawks, and Crawford finished with 27 saves.

    "This was a tough way to go down. This one's going to sting for a while," Toews said.

    The finale of the epic series between the last two Stanley Cup winners attracted a frenzied crowd of 22,315 that included Hall of Fame basketball player Charles Barkley and Bears wide receiver Brandon Marshall. And they were treated to another heart-stopping classic full of big shots and great saves by each side.

    Just like in Game 5, a 5-4 double-overtime victory for Chicago, the Blackhawks got off to a fast start, only to have the Kings come storming back. Kane picked up an assist on each of the first two goals, finding Saad with a slick pass from behind the net, and then getting to the right place at the right time for a lucky power-play carom that went right to Toews for an easy tap-in at 8:36 of the first.

    The comeback Kings, who seem to play their best the closer they get to the brink of elimination, then went to work. Carter batted a rebound out of the air and past Crawford at 16:31, and Williams scored his seventh of the playoff 51 seconds later, tying it at 2.

    It was Williams' seventh career goal in a Game 7, tying Glenn Anderson for the NHL record. Williams added an assist on Martinez's winning score, breaking Doug Gilmour's record for most points in such games with 14.

    "They find a way, L.A., they're never out of a hockey game, they're never out of a series," Quenneville said. "They're dangerous."

    NOTES: It was the seventh Game 7 of this year's NHL playoffs, matching the single-post-season record set in 1994 and equaled in 2011. ... Kane had nine points in the last three games of the series.

  23. #123
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    2014 STANLEY CUP FINALS: LOS ANGELES KINGS -vs.- NEW YORK RANGERS

    Schedule:
    -Game 1 Wednesday, June 4 @ 8PM
    -Game 2 Saturday, June 7 @ 7PM
    -Game 3 Monday, June 9 @ 8PM
    -Game 4 Wednesday, June 11 @ 8PM
    -*Game 5 Friday, June 13 @ 8PM
    -*Game 6 Monday, June 16 @8PM
    -*Game 7 Wednesday, June 18 @ 8PM
    *=if necessary

    All times are U.S. Eastern Standard Time

  24. #124
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drax View Post
    Kane is a superb scorer, but one could grow a beard waiting for him to pass the puck or help in defense.
    The same could have been said about Brett Hull.

  25. #125
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    The Kings are an overwhelming favorite to win the Cup. I have not seen even one single reporter, analyst, columnist or expert pick the Rangers to win. In fact, I have only seen one single prediction that even gives the Rangers a chance to extend the finals to seven games.

    Rangers' coach Alain Vigneault spoke about it to the Canadian Press, reprinted here for educational, discussion and archival purposes:

    The Rangers know that many, if not most, in the hockey world aren't giving them much of a chance to win the Cup. They neither mind nor embrace the role of underdog.

    They have heard it before, and have just gone about their business.

    "When you get into the NHL, you know how hard it is to win," forward Brad Richards said. "The underdog thing and the favourite thing really doesn't mean anything in the locker room. You have to go out and play."

    New York needed seven games to get past division rival Philadelphia in the first round. The Rangers weren't expected to beat Pittsburgh from the start, and certainly not after they fell into a 3-1 series deficit.

    Montreal was coming off a stirring seven-game victory over defending Eastern Conference champion Boston, so odds makers favoured the Canadiens in their matchup against New York, too.

    But here the Rangers are as the last team standing.

    "To put it quite simply, we're up against the team that won the Stanley Cup two years ago that just beat the defending Stanley Cup champions, that without a doubt is battle-tested," Rangers coach Alain Vigneault said. "We know exactly what we have to do. If we want to have a chance, we're going to have to bring our best hockey of the year. It's as simple as that.

    "We've had a couple of good practices, we're going to have another good one tomorrow, and we're going to be ready come Wednesday."

  26. #126
    IHF Staff Marc Brunengraber's Avatar
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    HD highlights, 7+ minutes, L.A.-Chicago Game 7: http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=gj0lFaiL4DE

  27. #127
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marc Brunengraber View Post
    Norwegian star & Rangers' forward Mats Zuccarello told Norwegian news outlet VG that winning the Stanley Cup would be a greater achievement than winning a Gold Medal in the Olympics or World Championships......yet another example to shatter the myth that European players don't care about the Stanley Cup as much as North American players do.
    I agree that it is a myth, European NHL players care as much about Stanley Cup as any others. I believe that Olympic and WC medals mean more to them than the average North American player though.

    Also, it is perhaps of importance that Zuccarello comes from a nation with little or no chance of winning a Gold medal at either event...
    Cum bibam cervisiam gaudeo.

  28. #128
    IHF Staff Marc Brunengraber's Avatar
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    Ticket prices for this Stanley Cup final series are insane......on the secondary market, the average price for a ticket to Games 3 & 4 in New York is U.S. $1,800.00, and the average price for a ticket to Games 1 & 2 in Los Angeles is U.S. $800.00. Game 6 tickets (should that game happen) are averaging U.S. $2,300.00 per ticket. Premium tickets near the ice are going for much more.

    See article here: http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=453865

  29. #129
    IHF Staff Marc Brunengraber's Avatar
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    Finals preview at this link from the Kings' website.....nice write up on both teams. Also has a video link where the analysts again say L.A. is an "overwhelming" favorite to win. http://kings.nhl.com/club/news.htm?i...id=DL|LAK|home

    Finals preview from The Hockey News: http://www.thehockeynews.com/blog/st...daily_20140602
    Last edited by Marc Brunengraber; 04-06-2014 at 07:36.

  30. #130
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    The way the players' salaries go up it is only understandable that ticket prices skyrocketted as well. However, on such high profile matches most of the audience are the rich people or celebrities who got their tickets to lift the social level of the particular match. True fans of the game (not only hockey, but soccer as well) have been driven to the bars or the so called "fan corners" in the open where they can at least get a beer and cheer loud with fear from "thought police".

    I took a look at prices for next season Colorado Avalanche matches (Croatian born Borna Rendulic signed two year contract for them) and was astonished to see how seats under the roof behind the goal cost $30. I wonder whether those people actually see the puck or they have to rely on the reactions from the lower rinks to realise what's going on. I'd rather stay at home and invite some friends to watch the game on the TV and have some beer and pretzels.

  31. #131
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drax View Post
    I took a look at prices for next season Colorado Avalanche matches (Croatian born Borna Rendulic signed two year contract for them) and was astonished to see how seats under the roof behind the goal cost $30.
    And that's cheap by the standard of American 'major league' sports tickets.
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  32. #132
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trim View Post
    And that's cheap by the standard of American 'major league' sports tickets.
    By comparison, it costs roughly $75-80 for the nosebleed seats in the Verizon Center, home of the Caps
    Twitter: @CSmeeth

  33. #133
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    Rangers-Kings heading to overtime in Game 1, tied 2-2.

    Rangers led 2-0 in the first period, before the Kings scored with just over two minutes left. Shots were 14-13 L.A.

    In the second period, the Kings tied it on an amazing individual move by superstar offensive defenseman Drew Doughty. Shots were 9-7 Rangers in the second.

    The third period was utterly dominated by L.A. - they outshot the Rangers 20-3 in the third - but Henrik Lundqvist gave a goaltending performance for the ages. SOG through regulation favored L.A. 41-25, though it was 22-21 Rangers after two periods. The last minute of regulation featured Kings goaltender Jonathan Quick stopping Carl Hagelin on a shorthanded breakaway, and Henrik Lundqvist diving to make a point blank save less than 30 seconds later.
    Last edited by Marc Brunengraber; 05-06-2014 at 06:56.

  34. #134
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    June 4, 2014: Los Angeles Kings 3, New York Rangers 2 (OT)
    L.A. leads Stanley Cup Finals 1-0

    From the Associated Press & ESPN, reprinted here for educational, discussion & archival purposes:
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    LOS ANGELES -- Justin Williams scored 4:36 into overtime after a turnover by Dan Girardi, and the Los Angeles Kings beat the New York Rangers 3-2 on Wednesday night in the Stanley Cup finals opener.

    Williams was left alone in the slot after Girardi's pass from his knees went straight to Mike Richards. Williams put his eighth goal of the postseason past Henrik Lundqvist, who made 40 saves and nearly stole an early win for the Rangers.

    Jonathan Quick made 25 saves for the Kings, who moved one victory closer to their second Stanley Cup title in three years after a hair-raising opener.

    Game 2 is Saturday at Staples Center.

    Kyle Clifford had a goal and an assist for Los Angeles, and Drew Doughty scored the tying goal in the second period as the Kings overcame yet another early deficit in a postseason full of comebacks.

    The Kings hadn't won an overtime playoff game at home since May 6, 2001. Williams attributed the win to "resilience and believing. Certainly it was not the start we wanted, but we got the result we wanted."

    Benoit Pouliot scored on a breakaway and Carl Hagelin got a short-handed goal in the first period, but the Rangers spent much of the final two periods on their heels. Lundqvist had several outstanding saves as the Swedish star began his attempt to win his first Stanley Cup, but had no chance on Williams' winner.

    Los Angeles outshot New York 20-3 in the third period, becoming the first team to get 20 shots in a finals period in 16 years. The Kings also got a power play with 1:36 left, setting up a wild finish to regulation.

    Moments after Hagelin was denied by Quick on yet another short-handed breakaway, Jeff Carter was stopped agonizingly short of a wraparound goal by Lundqvist, sending the Kings to their third straight overtime playoff game.

    The tension-filled opener was a fitting start to the finals for two teams that traversed perilous paths to the first New York-L.A. championship playoff meeting since the Yankees-Dodgers World Series in 1981.

    The Kings and the Rangers played a combined 41 games in the first three rounds -- just one fewer than the maximum -- to emerge from the middle of the playoff pack.

    The series is big news in the nation's two biggest cities: Staples Center was packed for the opener with roaring Kings fans still not quite accustomed to their club's recent success. Meanwhile, thousands of New Yorkers packed Bryant Park to watch on video boards.

    The Kings and Rangers hadn't met in seven months, but New York's speed quickly caused problems for Los Angeles, leading to an early two-goal advantage.

    Pouliot scored the first goal of the series on a breakaway, stealing the puck from Doughty and skating past a stumbling Jake Muzzin. The Rangers' small contingent of fans roared again 2:42 later when Hagelin's breakaway shot was kicked in by Slava Voynov, who hadn't been able to keep up with Hagelin out of the New York zone.

    Los Angeles answered late in the period when Carter passed from behind the net to Clifford, who banged in a sharp-angled shot for his first playoff goal since April 23, 2011. The grinding forward had played 37 straight postseason games without a goal.

    Doughty tied it for the Kings with a beautiful move, toe-dragging around Derek Dorsett and firing a wrist shot past Lundqvist for his fourth goal in six games.

    Los Angeles had the first 14 shots in the third period, but Game 1 of the Stanley Cup finals went to overtime for the third straight season.

    Game notes

    [AHL goalie] David Leneveu dressed as Lundqvist's backup after Cam Talbot was ruled out (unspecified injury). The well-traveled Leneveu, who signed with New York's AHL affiliate in January, has never appeared in a game for the Rangers. Talbot has only appeared twice in relief of Lundqvist in the postseason. ... Kings D Robyn Regehr missed his 14th straight playoff game with a knee injury. Regehr is skating in practice and feels ready to play in his second career Stanley Cup finals, but the veteran realizes the Kings might not want to change a winning lineup. ... Wayne Gretzky, who led the Kings to the 1993 Stanley Cup finals, dropped the ceremonial first puck. Teemu Selanne also attended the game as a commentator for Finnish television.
    Last edited by Marc Brunengraber; 11-06-2014 at 00:16.

  35. #135
    IHF Staff Marc Brunengraber's Avatar
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    In the 75 years since the Stanley Cup Finals went to a best of seven format, only 17 teams who lost Game 1 came back to win the Cup. The 1994 Rangers were one of them. Hopefully the 2014 Rangers will join them.

    I laugh at everyone who says the West is so much better than the East. The Rangers proved they can play with this team. They will not roll over. Kings dominated the third, but the Rangers could have won in the last minute of regulation had Hagelin scored on the short handed breakaway. And the OT goal was giftwrapped on a rare Girardi gaffe. Not dead yet, but need to take Game 2 to have a realistic shot.

    I disagree with the article I posted, which claims that L.A. dominated the second and third periods. The Rangers dominated the first, the teams played evenly in the second, and L.A. completely dominated the third. The Rangers looked sloppy in the OT, and Girardi's falling down and giving away the puck in his own zone cost New York the game.

  36. #136
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    Game 1, 12+ minutes of HD highlights: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YnMxuxTKgss

  37. #137
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    Goodbye, NHL. You've officially lost a fan who spends a lot of money on your product. If you can't or won't enforce your own rules, then you won't get my entertainment dollars. What a travesty. Anyone with any sense of right or wrong should be offended by what happened tonight. Good luck to the Rangers the rest of the way, but I will not be watching, or updating this thread any further. An absolute disgrace of a league.

  38. #138
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marc Brunengraber View Post
    Goodbye, NHL. You've officially lost a fan who spends a lot of money on your product. If you can't or won't enforce your own rules, then you won't get my entertainment dollars. What a travesty. Anyone with any sense of right or wrong should be offended by what happened tonight. Good luck to the Rangers the rest of the way, but I will not be watching, or updating this thread any further. An absolute disgrace of a league.
    That's the NHL attitude, isn't it though? They got the fans coming back after three lockouts. They know they have a media monopoly in the USA for the great sport and you'll have to come back when you get the itch.
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  39. #139
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    I was absolutelly appaled when I saw what they did not call a goalie interference. When you add the failure to call the foul on Crawford in game 6 of Western finals or the failure to call the axe hit in the head of the Ranger in this game it seems that someone picked Kings as champions for whatever reason.

  40. #140
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drax View Post
    I was absolutelly appaled when I saw what they did not call a goalie interference. When you add the failure to call the foul on Crawford in game 6 of Western finals or the failure to call the axe hit in the head of the Ranger in this game it seems that someone picked Kings as champions for whatever reason.
    It's a shame the caliber of officiating hasn't been up to the level of play.
    The hockey, for the most part, has been fantastic.
    But the reffing?....meh.

  41. #141
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    Not to mention that the linesman missed a 'puck-over-glass' by the LA defensemen a few minutes before the OT winner. That should have resulted in an automatic penalty against LA.
    There is no such thing as a "Bad Hockey Market"
    There are, however, several markets with "Bad Hockey"

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  42. #142
    IHF Staff Trim's Avatar
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    Are the officials missing calls or acting on orders from Gary? Big market Los Angeles, post-Gretzky, hadn't made many headlines until that playoff run two years ago...
    Bringing ice hockey to Northwest China!

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  43. #143
    IHF Member Bennison's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drax View Post
    I was absolutelly appaled when I saw what they did not call a goalie interference.
    I just watched the situation on Youtube and I can't see how they failed to call that interference. Ridiculous.
    Cum bibam cervisiam gaudeo.

  44. #144
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bennison View Post
    I just watched the situation on Youtube and I can't see how they failed to call that interference. Ridiculous.
    I am absolutely convinced that since the NHL had instituted a two referee system, the quality of officiating has significantly deteriorated.
    That is because the number of officials employed has increased dramatically and some of them IMO are not up to NHL standards.
    The belief that four eyes are better than two simply hasn't borne out....in fact, it has gotten a lot worse.

  45. #145
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heatleysucks View Post
    I am absolutely convinced that since the NHL had instituted a two referee system, the quality of officiating has significantly deteriorated.
    It is valid not only for NHL, but IIHF as well. That Swedish duo from Minsk who failed to call the penalty for the Shipachyov's hit to the head of that Finnish player despite the fact that both of them were supposed to watch that part of the rink. And then they repeated the "performace" as soon as they were together in the rink.

    It is funny that even in the amateurish Croatian championship two referees are in no way better than single one. In fact, it is even worse since both of them want to fulfill his quota of calls.

  46. #146
    IHF Staff Marc Brunengraber's Avatar
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    When the Kings win the Cup in the next few days or a week or whatever, I will give Kings fans (including a good friend of mine) a virtual handshake here on the forums and elsewhere online and congratulate them and their team. The Kings refuse to lay down and die, keep fighting back, and bad calls are a part of sports. The Kings' players and organization are fighting for the Cup just as the Rangers are. But two statements must be made - (i) that 3rd Kings goal that was allowed to stand in Game 2 has irrevocably altered the series and essentially robbed the Rangers of a realistic chance to win the Cup this year (& ruined an experience I and many others have waited 20 years for), and (ii) NHL refereeing and the front office are frightfully unprofessional and a bunch of hypocrites who don't follow their own rulebook.

  47. #147
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marc Brunengraber View Post
    When the Kings win the Cup in the next few days or a week or whatever, I will give Kings fans (including a good friend of mine) a virtual handshake here on the forums and elsewhere online and congratulate them and their team. The Kings refuse to lay down and die, keep fighting back, and bad calls are a part of sports. The Kings' players and organization are fighting for the Cup just as the Rangers are. But two statements must be made - (i) that 3rd Kings goal that was allowed to stand in Game 2 has irrevocably altered the series and essentially robbed the Rangers of a realistic chance to win the Cup this year (& ruined an experience I and many others have waited 20 years for), and (ii) NHL refereeing and the front office are frightfully unprofessional and a bunch of hypocrites who don't follow their own rulebook.
    I think the Rangers still have a shot at this, but things must start going their way.
    Two OT losses on the road which could have just as easily been two OT wins
    The Rangers need to take both games at MSG though to have a realistic chance.

  48. #148
    IHF Member Pršljen's Avatar
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    As a pretty much neutral NHL fan I must sy that my sympathies in this final series is on Kings side just for one reason and that one is Martin St.Louis. Since I'm (better say "was" because I don't watch NHL anymore) Tampa Bay fan I'm disgusted by the way he left team where he spent most of his career and where he was loved by fans and even won Stanley cup. Then he suddenly decided to throw everything in the wind and leave the team and Lightning organization for his let's say strange reasons. No Lightning fan likes him anymore and intersting thing is that two days ago there was 10th anniversary of team's only Stanley cup win. There was an album from winning celebration published on team's facebook site and there was no single picture of Martin St.Louis with the cup. I believe that was suptile way to tell the team's and also fans anger towards him. That's why I'm cheering for Kings in this series, St.Louis doesn't deserve another cup. Yes, it's very, very subjective from my side but I don't care.

    As far as refereeing is conerned I must agree with all of you and say that some calls were joke. I wouldn't go so far to say that it decided the series, there is a lot to play but it certainly says something about general state of refereeing in NHL. When they make these kind of mistakes in the Stanley cup finals then something's wrong.
    Hokej u Hrvatskoj ima svijetlu budućnost SAMO AKO mjerodavni ljudi rade svoj posao kako treba - Pršljen
    Hockey in Croatia has a bright future ONLY IF relevant people do their job right - Pršljen

  49. #149
    IHF Staff Marc Brunengraber's Avatar
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    Here, this is from the Canadian Press on June 8, 2014, reprinted here for educational, discussion and archival purposes.

    Despite my disgust with the NHL front office and management, I'm not going to punish our great forum members and readers, so I will continue my work on the thread:

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The New York Rangers returned home Sunday with a bad taste in their mouth.

    Unable to hold a two-goal lead on three occasions in their 5-4 overtime loss to the Kings, the Rangers had plenty to rue in Game 2 of the Stanley Cup final at Staples Center on Saturday night.

    But they were especially upset at a non-call early in the third period when Dwight King scored to pull the Kings to within one at 4-3.

    As Justin Williams moved the puck to Matt Greene at the point, the six-foot-four 230-pound King headed to goal as he had done all night. Rangers defenceman Ryan McDonagh engaged him at the top of the blue paint and soon King, McDonagh and goalie Henrik Lundqvist were tangled together like a three-headed octopus.

    King somehow managed to tip Greene's shot from the point as Lundqvist was unable to move.

    Marian Gaborik scored 5:38 later to tie it at 4-4 and Dustin Brown's tip-in of a Willie Mitchell shot ended the drama at 10:26 of double overtime.

    On the wrong end of two overtime contests, the Rangers trail two games to none going into Game 3 Monday at Madison Square Garden.

    Asked it was goalie interference on the King goal, a tight-lipped Rangers coach Alain Vigneault said: "Ask the NHL."

    Goalie interference is not reviewable under the current rules.

    Lundqvist was clearly unhappy, throwing his arms up in disbelief after the goal as he was pinned under King and McDonagh. He talked to the referee during a TV timeout soon after, seeking an explanation.

    Lundqvist said after the game that he just wanted consistency, pointing to a goalie interference penalty to Rangers forward Benoit Pouliot in the second period.

    "If they don't call that, you can't call that they called in the second period," said Lundqvist, who thought Pouliot had been pushed into Jonathan Quick.

    "We have the same play and they score. Like I said, I don't think it's a penalty but you've got to stop the play if the goalie can't move in his crease. And it's not like I'm outside the crease. I play pretty deep. Just be consistent with it."

    Kings forward Jeff Carter was called for goalie interference in the first overtime period, after contact with Lundqvist that left the New York goaltender taking his time to get his equilibrium back.

    Still Rangers forward Derek Stepan also didn't like what he saw on the King goal.

    "I don't really want to get myself worked up right now," he said. "From my point of view, I think that their (King's) goal shouldn't have even happened. But I'm not the one making the calls, I'm the one playing. I'm not the one that saw what he saw and we go from there."

    King was a thorn in the Rangers' side all night, screening Lundqvist on Willie Mitchell's second-period goal.

    Vigneault tried to look at the positives.

    "Both games we had opportunities," he said. "We didn't get it done. We're going home in front of our great fans. We're going to be ready for the next game. "

    The non-call was just one of many talking points. Like the Kings, the Rangers were punished for mistakes. And they had chances to score, with Jonathan Quick stopping Brad Richards at point-blank range in the third and Chris Kreider hitting the post in overtime.

    Lundqvist pointed to the razor-edge margin in the first two games.

    "It's just one bounce here and there and it's a different score. We came up short in two games. Now we have to go home to New York and turn this around."

    Stepan said the goal for New York was simple.

    "Just relax and play. We've got to make sure we take care of ourselves, get home and get that Garden rocking."

    Los Angeles was judged to have yielded 33 giveaways Saturday, to 15 from New York. That's 51 giveaways from LA in two games, compared to 25 for the Rangers.

    Kings centre Anze Kopitar is expecting a Rangers pushback at Madison Square Garden.

    "We can play better hockey. And we've done it before. Everybody knows that we're going to have to do it at MSG because their building is going to be loud," Kopitar said. "I'm sure they're going to be very desperate. They're going to throw everything at us that they've got and we're going to have to match all of the above."

    The Rangers' loss came despite leading 4-2 after 40 minutes. That snapped their 10-0 record when leading after two periods this post-season.

    Forty-eight teams have taken a 2-0 series lead since the Stanley Cup final went to the best-of-seven format in 1939. Of those clubs, 43 (89.9 per cent) have gone on to win the Cup, including the 2012 Kings.

    Home teams sweeping Games 1 and 2 of the Cup final have gone 32-3 (.914 per cent). But two of the exceptions were recent with Pittsburgh (2009 against Detroit) and Boston (2011 against Vancouver) rallying to win the Cup.
    Last edited by Marc Brunengraber; 10-06-2014 at 03:31.

  50. #150
    IHF Staff Marc Brunengraber's Avatar
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    Video of the L.A. third "goal" in Game 2 that should not have counted: http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=elr_cVA1kN8

    Henrik Lundqvist post-game talking about it: http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=VTH3NPYgou0

    15 minutes of HD highlights (or lowlights, if you prefer), of Game 2: http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=Z7coq6CRaqk

    June 7, 2014: L.A. KINGS 5, N.Y. RANGERS 4 (DOUBLE OT)
    L.A. leads Stanley Cup Finals 2-0
    Last edited by Marc Brunengraber; 11-06-2014 at 00:15.

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