The NHL has announced that Minnesota Wild netminder Josh Harding, Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby, and Boston Bruins defenseman Adam McQuaid are the 2013 finalists for the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy.
The award is for “the National Hockey League player who best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey.”
Before the 2013 campaign began, Harding revealed that he had multiple sclerosis, but he was determined to continue his NHL career. Harding posted a 24-save shutout in his first start following the announcement. When Niklas Backstrom suffered a sports hernia before the start of Game 1 of the first round, Harding was called into service and held his own against the Presidents’ Trophy winning Chicago Blackhawks.
Crosby had been limited to just 63 games in his previous two campaigns due to concussion problems, but he came back with a vengeance in 2013, scoring 15 goals and 56 points in 36 games. He’s also a finalist for the Hart Trophy and Ted Lindsay Award despite missing the final month of the regular season due to a broken jaw.
McQuaid wasn’t expected to play in 2013 after undergoing two surgeries due to Thoracic Outlet Syndrome. He needed to have blood clots removed from his arm and had a rib taken out. He had the operations in September and started skating just two months later. He was in the Bruins’ lineup for their season opener on Jan. 19.
Perhaps it’s an ominous sign of bad luck to come, but for which team?
Prior to puck drop between the host San Jose Sharks and Nashville Predators in Game 1 on Friday, a black cat hit the ice at SAP Center, taking a nervous stroll along the boards.
Not sure exactly where it came from, although it’s possible someone was feeling extra superstitious before the start of this series.
Official update on the really important story of the evening:
The Dallas Stars scored a late winner, held on in the final minute and eventually struck first in their best-of-seven second-round series with the St. Louis Blues.
Once again, it was the speed and skill of the Stars that proved to be the difference in the end. Radek Faksa scored with less than five minutes remaining in the third period, breaking the deadlock and giving Dallas a 2-1 victory and 1-0 series lead over their Central Division foes on Friday.
As he entered the zone on the rush, Faksa dished off to a flying Ales Hemsky, who was denied by Brian Elliott in alone. But Faksa followed up, jamming in the rebound to give the Stars the lead, as both St. Louis defensemen Jay Bouwmeester and Alex Pietrangelo were caught by the speed of the Dallas forwards on the rush.
The Stars held on from there, as the Blues made a late push to tie the game.
Kari Lehtonen stopped 31 of 32 shots for Dallas, while Elliott was busy throughout the night, stopping 40 of 42 shots.
Elliott was furious after the Stars opened the scoring in the second period, as Antoine Roussel tallied on a rebound after yet another nice Dallas passing play in the offensive zone.
Stars forward Patrick Eaves left the game early in the third period and didn’t play another shift after being hit in the lower part of his leg with the puck from a point shot.
The Dallas Stars grabbed the all-important first goal in Game 1 against the St. Louis Blues on Friday. And it was agitating forward Antoine Roussel who capitalized in the second period.
Roussel buried a rebound at the end of a pretty passing play from the Stars. Blues goalie Brian Elliott was furious, as defenseman Jay Bouwmeester slid into the crease in an attempt to block the shot.
After stunning the Anaheim Ducks with a Game 7 win in the first round, the Nashville Predators remain in California to take on the San Jose Sharks in the second round. You can catch Game 1 on NBCSN (10:30 p.m. ET) or online with the NBC Sports’ Live Extra.
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Here are some links to check out for tonight’s game:
Sharks have some ‘pent up energy,’ eager to start series with Preds
Game 7 win is ‘a big step’ for Predators