Today might be a bit misleading from an “injuries” standpoint since there might be players who are held out of the game because both teams already clinched their position in the playoffs. The Capitals already guaranteed themselves the number one seed in the East while Montreal’s loss yesterday assured Boston’s place as the number six seed (although it still remains to be seen whether the Bruins will play against the currently second place Devils and the third place Sabres).
First, here are the players who are legitimately injured for both teams, according to NHL.com.
Injury report: Savard is questionable to play again this season for Boston as he battles post-concussion symptoms. Defensemen Andrew Ference (groin), Mark Stuart (finger) and Dennis Seidenberg (forearm) are also out of the lineup. … Washington is missing forward Tyler Sloan (upper body) and defenseman Milan Jurcina (sports hernia).
That being said, don’t be surprised if there are some big names getting a breather during the last game of the season.
The Boston Globe reports that backup-turned-starter Tuukka Rask might get some rest in favor of former Vezina Trophy winner Tim Thomas. No word on which Washington Capitals goalie will play yet.
One player you shouldn’t expect to see in the press box is Alex Ovechkin, though. The Russian superstar is in an ultra-tight race for the Rocket Richard Trophy at 50 goals with Steven Stamkos (50) and Sidney Crosby (49). He also needs quite the game to win the Art Ross Trophy because Henrik Sedin’s 4 assists gave the Swede a 112-109 lead on Ovechkin.
The Pittsburgh Penguins ended a long run of playoff overtime struggles on Wednesday … and are now one win away from ending the Washington Capitals’ season.
Many expected the Penguins to crater on defense without Kris Letang (they were 2-8-1 in the regular season without him). While there were shaky moments, Pittsburgh emphasized its speed and other strengths in taking a 3-2 overtime thriller against Washington.
With that, the Penguins’ series lead grows to 3-1.
It was a thrilling, sometimes nasty contest, from Sidney Crosby shaking off an Alex Ovechkin slash, to Evgeni Malkin delivering a hit some thought was over the line and plenty of typical playoff skirmishes.
Ultimately, Matt Murray played another strong game and Patric Hornqvist scored the overtime-winner to put the Capitals in a tough spot.
The Penguins lost their previous eight playoff overtime games, so maybe it was just a matter of time before such a game went their way?
Then again, the history between the two teams is a little different:
If the Capitals want to advance beyond the second round for the first time in the Ovechkin era, they’ll need to accomplish quite the feat against arguably the hottest team in the NHL.
Sidney Crosby is known to get fiery, but even for his feisty standards, he was furious during the third period of Game 4.
An Alex Ovechkin slash caught Crosby on the hand, leaving the Pittsburgh Penguins star shaking his mitt and pleading for a call.
After that, Crosby left to get his hand looked at … but not before flipping out and destroying his stick.
You can watch it happen in the GIF and the videos above.
Crosby was able to return not that long after that moment, although we can only speculate regarding how his overall game will be affected if his hand isn’t 100 percent.
Tensions seem to rise with every passing game in the playoffs, particularly in a series with bad blood like the one between the Pittsburgh Penguins and Washington Capitals.
Kris Letang was suspended for his hit in Game 3, and some wonder if Evgeni Malkin should suffer a similar fate for his check on Daniel Winnik on Wednesday.
Winnik left the contest and has not yet returned during the third period.
Take a look at the hit in the video above and decide for yourself.
Fires devastated the Canadian city of Fort McMurray, and the St. Louis Blues are doing their part to help those who were affected.
Here’s what the team is doing to raise money during Game 4 against the Dallas Stars:
Proceeds raised through the team’s 50/50 raffle and the Blues for Kids silent auction will benefit families who have been misplaced by the fires.
Blues forward Scottie Upshall shared his thoughts with the Associated Press regarding several family members being among those evacuated from the area.
“It’s been a great city, a city that’s survived for many years through some tough times and for me, growing up there doesn’t seem too long ago,” Upshall said. “Places that probably aren’t standing anymore will be really, really tough to take. But as long as everyone’s OK, that’s the main thing.”
Other people from around the hockey world weighed in on the scary scene, including Ottawa Senators defenseman Chris Phillips, who told the Ottawa Citizen that “it hurts a lot.”
People shared some scary sights from the evacuation.