Three games down, two to go. We’ll be hit with the same problem as
before as the Predators and Blackhawks game will be on at the same time
as Sharks and Avalanche, which is unfortunate. We’ll do our best.
3: Final – Philadelphia Flyers 3, New Jesey Devils 2 (OT)
lead series 2-1
An absolutely tremendous effort by the Flyers
in the third period and overtime was nearly negated by an equally
amazing effort by Martin Brodeur in net for the Devils. The Flyers
outshot the Devils 18-4 in the 3rd period and overtime, before Dan
Carcillo was about to slam home a rebound off a Mike Richards shot to
win the game for the Flyers.
While the officiating is certainly
going to get some attention in this game, the Devils will be left
wondering when they can expect for their forwards to actually raise
their level of play.The Flyers completely outworked the Devils in a
titular game in the series, while the Devils managed just 19 shots on
goal. Ilya Kovalchuk: zero shots on goal.
Game 3: Final – Ottawa Senators 2, Pittsburgh Penguins 4
lead series 2-1
Sidney Crosby continues to be the difference
maker in this series. The Penguins captain had a goal and an assist,
including what would become the game winning goal off an big effort down
low on the power play in the last minute of the second period.
Senators will be frustrated over their inability to take advantage of
several scoring chances in the middle frame, missing the net on several
odd man rushes and flubbing or whiffing on a number of open shots. The
Senators have the energy and the pressure to try and keep up with the
Penguins, but it’s looking they just don’t have the firepower.
“Costly victories” may have been one of the themes of Saturday night, as some teams paired impressive wins with worrisome injuries.
The good news is that, in each case, it appears that the early word is optimistic about those players (Tyler Seguin got stitched up in the Stars’ win, for example).
The Anaheim Ducks are reportedly readying to recall Anton Khudobin on Sunday after John Gibson suffered an upper-body injury during a collision with Chicago Blackhawks forward Richard Panik.
Again, so far the hope/expectation is that this might not be a major issue:
The pessimistic take would be to wonder “Uh oh, is the Ducks goalie carousel starting again?”
Frederik Andersen has seen some runs as Anaheim’s No. 1 guy, so maybe this issue is a reminder that the Ducks may be better off keeping both Gibson and Andersen around … at least while they can.
For two periods, the Dallas Stars seemed to say, “Are you sure the Washington Capitals are the best team in the NHL?”
They chased Braden Holtby and built a 4-0 lead through those first 40 minutes, and that was enough … but barely. The Stars beat the Capitals 4-3 on Saturday, which accomplished the following:
- Dallas ended Washington’s winning streak at five games. The Stars have now won three straight.
- This win slides the Stars ahead of the Chicago Blackhawks for first place in the highly competitive Central Division. While both teams sit at 77 standings points, Dallas holds three games in hand.
- By passing Chicago, the Stars now lead the Western Conference as a whole.
Impressive stuff. Some might even call it a statement game, although others may hold that nail-biting ending against them (possibly arguing that the Stars’ flaws may come back to haunt them in the playoffs).
Dallas’ biggest concern likely has little to do with doubters. Instead, they must monitor the statuses of forwards Tyler Seguin and Cody Eakin.
Long story short, the Stars are red-hot, yet bigger challenges likely lie ahead.
The Chicago Blackhawks are on edge on Saturday, and it’s not because of what’s currently a close game against the Anaheim Ducks.
(Not that they’re indifferent toward a match against their opponents from last year’s conference final match, mind you.)
Instead, the Blackhawks are quite concerned about the health of Marian Hossa, who needed help off of the ice following an awkward, scary-looking crash into the boards. (Hampus Lindholm delivered the hip check that sent Hossa sprawling, in case you’re wondering.)
You can see that moment in the video above, while My Regular Face’s GIF also captures that troubling moment:
It’s too early to tell if Hossa will bounce back or miss some time from this. Stay tuned for potential updates.
Update: Joel Quenneville seems optimistic about Hossa, broadly speaking:
Ryan Getzlaf scored the overtime game-winner as the Ducks won 3-2 (OT).
If it weren’t for Mike Yeo and the Minnesota Wild, you could argue that the Florida Panthers suffered from the worst night so far.
You can see that Saturday was unpleasant merely from looking at the scoreboard: the Nashville Predators pummeled the Panthers by an unkind score of 5-0.
The pain goes beyond that … literally so.
For one thing, Quinton Howden suffered an upper-body injury and did not return. That’s no good, but if you want to feel sick to your stomach, footage of Brandon Pirri‘s likely lower-body injury (ankle maybe?) may do the trick.
(Seriously, you may be happier if you don’t look.)
The Panthers didn’t make an announcement about Pirri one way or another, so we’ll see if he somehow avoided anything significant.
Either way, it was a night this team would like to forget.