Another day, another goaltending switch in the NHL playoffs.
This time the change comes in Florida, as George Richards of the Miami Herald reports Scott Clemmensen will start for the Panthers in Game 4 against New Jersey — this after incumbent No. 1 Jose Theodore started the first three.
Florida’s decision comes just days after Vancouver parked longtime starter Roberto Luongo in favor of backup Cory Schneider, who started Games 3 and 4 in the Canucks-Kings series.
It’s somewhat surprising Florida head coach Kevin Dineen went this route. Theodore played well in Game 1, which featured one of the most lopsided periods in NHL history — the Devils outshot Florida 26-9, the most shots any NHL team had managed in a playoff first period since 1997 — and finished with 35 saves.
Theodore was solid again in the Game 2 victory, but then yanked just 6:16 into Game 3 after allowing three goals on six shots.
Clemmensen relieved Theodore, stopped every shot he faced, and the Panthers rallied for a 4-3 victory — which looks as though it cemented Dineen’s decision.
The big x-factor in all of this, though, is playoff experience…or lack thereof. The 34-year-old Clemmensen has never started a playoff game and, coming into this series, had exactly six minutes and 53 seconds of postseason experience.
Theodore, meanwhile, has over 50 postseason games on his resume, participating in the playoffs with four different teams (Montreal, Colorado, Washington and Florida.)
Breaking: the Pittsburgh Penguins and Philadelphia Flyers don’t like each other.
The stakes might be higher for the Penguins than the Flyers – aside from those who still believe Philly has a shot at a playoff run – their rivalry rarely subsides.
With that in mind, it’s no surprise that Sunday featured at least one fight, with Cameron Gaunce squaring off against Brandon Manning in a pretty spirited bout.
Manning isn’t shy about fighting, by the way; this was his seventh bout of the season, according to Hockey Fights.
Higher on the radar for the Penguins is the situation for Conor Sheary, who has been absent from the ice since about midway through the first period. PHT will keep an eye out for updates on what could be yet another injury for the health-challenged Pens.
Life is difficult, complex and confusing. Good thing we have dog videos.
Forgive this video being one night late, but for those of us who watch cute animal clips, time is a furry circle. Or something like that.
Anyway, this golden retriever got a little “ice time” before the Washington Capitals’ game against the Arizona Coyotes on Saturday in what would end up being a 4-1 win for the Caps. It’s an excellent video featuring a top-notch, hilarious pooch.
Alternate joke: Now that is some puck retrieval.
Patrik Laine and Auston Matthews are locked with identical goals (34), assists (27) and points (61) on Sunday, which is remarkable since Laine has played in 67 games versus 75 for Matthews. He won’t get a chance to beef up his numbers on Sunday, either.
It looks like the high-scoring rookie is missing the Winnipeg Jets’ contest against the Vancouver Canucks because of an illness, according to TSN’s Sara Orlesky.
The Jets are almost assured to miss the playoffs, so seeing Laine lose a chance to bolster his Calder argument adds a little extra sadness to the night.
The NHL’s Department of Player Safety announced a Monday hearing for San Jose Sharks tough guy Micheal Haley for his “roughing/sucker punch” on Calle Jarnkrok of the Nashville Predators.
The league didn’t specify if Haley will face a telephone or in-person hearing on Monday afternoon. They did, interestingly, use the phrase “sucker punch” in that official announcement.
Haley received a match penalty during the game. Sharks head coach Peter DeBoer was highly upset about the hit that inspired Haley’s actions.
“When you run someone from behind in a game like that, you probably deserve to get a punch in the mouth,” DeBoer told reporters.
In other bad news for the Sharks, CSN Bay Area’s Kevin Kurz reports that Logan Couture‘s situation isn’t looking promising after he was hurt on Sunday.