A bit of odd news down the wire tonight via Twitter from CapGeek as it seems Red Wings are once again dipping into the Finnish pro league.
Red Wings sign F Ilari Filppula, the brother of Valtteri
So now the question is, who the heck is Ilari Filppula other than being from Finland and costing the Red Wings next to nothing. Fortunately, mlive.com’s Ansar Khan is on top of things.
The elder Filppula (5-foot-11, 191) has played his entire pro career in the Finnish League. He won the Jari Kurri Trophy as playoff MVP this season, helping TPS Turku win the championship by picking up two goals and 12 assists in 15 playoff games. He had 12 goals and 37 assists for a team-high 49 points in 58 regular season games.
Perhaps the Red Wings are hoping that this Finnish experiment will work out with less aggravation than their test run with Ville Leino, who was traded to the Flyers this past season after the Red Wings ran out of patience with him. Much to the Red Wings chagrin, Leino then turned into one of the Flyers top performers in the playoffs. Meanwhile the player the Wings got in return for Leino, Ole-Kristian Tollefsen, won’t be leaving Swedish team MoDo to come back and play for the Red Wings.
I would have to assume that if Ilari Filppula is going to become something other than a guy getting time grinding away in the AHL, he’s there to at least keep his kid brother happy by being stateside. Then again, you can’t put anything past the Red Wings when it comes to digging for gold in Scandinavia.
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.