Evgeni Malkin

NHL awards to be announced during Cup finals

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The 2013 NHL Awards winners will be announced in a pair of televised specials during the Stanley Cup finals.

Per the league, the day before Game 2 of the finals, the recipients of the Masterton, Selke, King Clancy and Lady Byng trophies, the Jack Adams Award, the Mark Messier NHL Leadership Award, the NHL Foundation Player Award and the NHL General Manager of the Year Award will be revealed at 5 p.m. on NHL Network in the United States and Canada.

At 7 p.m. the day of of Game 2, the Hart, Calder, Norris, Vezina trophies, along with the Ted Lindsay Award, will be announced on NBC Sports Network in the United States and CBC in Canada.

The full-scale awards show — a casualty of  the lockout — will be back in Las Vegas next year.

BILL MASTERTON MEMORIAL TROPHY (Perseverance and dedication to hockey)
Sidney Crosby, Pittsburgh Penguins
Josh Harding, Minnesota Wild
Adam McQuaid, Boston Bruins

CALDER MEMORIAL TROPHY (Top rookie)
Brendan Gallagher, Montreal Canadiens
Jonathan Huberdeau, Florida Panthers
Brandon Saad, Chicago Blackhawks

FRANK J. SELKE TROPHY (Top defensive forward)
Patrice Bergeron, Boston Bruins
Pavel Datsyuk, Detroit Red Wings
Jonathan Toews, Chicago Blackhawks

HART MEMORIAL TROPHY (Most valuable player to his team)
Sidney Crosby, Pittsburgh Penguins
Alex Ovechkin, Washington Capitals
John Tavares, New York Islanders

JACK ADAMS AWARD (Top head coach)
Bruce Boudreau, Anaheim Ducks
Paul MacLean, Ottawa Senators
Joel Quenneville, Chicago Blackhawks

JAMES NORRIS MEMORIAL TROPHY (Top defenseman)
Kris Letang, Pittsburgh Penguins
P.K. Subban, Montreal Canadiens
Ryan Suter, Minnesota Wild

LADY BYNG MEMORIAL TROPHY (Best sportsmanship, gentlemanly conduct and ability)
Patrick Kane, Chicago Blackhawks
Matt Moulson, New York Islanders
Martin St. Louis, Tampa Bay Lightning

MARK MESSIER NHL LEADERSHIP AWARD PRESENTED BY BRIDGESTONE
Daniel Alfredsson, Ottawa Senators
Dustin Brown, Los Angeles Kings
Jonathan Toews, Chicago Blackhawks

NHL GENERAL MANAGER OF THE YEAR AWARD
Marc Bergevin, Montreal Canadiens
Bob Murray, Anaheim Ducks
Ray Shero, Pittsburgh Penguins

TED LINDSAY AWARD (Most outstanding player as voted by members of the NHLPA)
Sidney Crosby, Pittsburgh Penguins
Alex Ovechkin, Washington Capitals
Martin St. Louis, Tampa Bay Lightning

VEZINA TROPHY (Top goaltender)
Sergei Bobrovsky, Columbus Blue Jackets
Henrik Lundqvist, New York Rangers
Antti Niemi, San Jose Sharks

Pavelski’s late goal helps Sharks grab 2-0 series lead over Preds

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The San Jose Sharks became the only team in the second round to jump out to a 2-0 lead in their series. The Sharks did it by beating the Predators 3-2 in Game 2 on Sunday night.

San Jose opened the scoring in the second period when Logan Couture buried a rebound by Preds goalie Pekka Rinne. Brent Burns took the initial shot from the point and extended his playoff point streak to four games.

The Predators finally got on the board at the 12:56 mark of the third period when Mattias Ekholm tied the game at one.

Here’s the goal:

Nashville’s good fortune didn’t last very long. Sharks captain Joe Pavelski gave San Jose a 2-1 lead less than five minutes later.

Pavelski also picked up two assists in the game. The 31-year-old has at least one point in six of his seven postseason games in 2016.

Joe Thornton then added an empty-netter in the final minute of play before Ryan Johansen scored with four seconds remaining.

Despite the loss, Preds head coach Peter Laviolette wasn’t too disappointed by the way his team played.

The Predators outshot the Sharks (39-25), they outhit San Jose (46-26), but they just couldn’t outscore them.

Like the old saying goes: “you’re not in trouble until you lose a game on home ice.” The Preds still haven’t done that, which means they’re not done yet.

The series now shifts to Nashville for Game 3, which will be played on Tuesday night.

Video: Marc-Edouard Vlasic saved by his visor after taking Shea Weber shot to the face

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It’s a scary night for players getting hit in the head with pucks.

After Brian Elliott was hit in the head by a Jason Spezza slapshot, it was Marc-Edouard Vlasic‘s turn to narrowly avoid disaster.

In the third period of Sunday’s game against the Predators, Vlasic took a puck to the face. The end result could have been catastrophic had Vlasic not had a visor.

You can see the incident by clicking the video at the top of the page.

It’s nice to see that Vlasic was in a joking mood after the game:

Hockey Twitter breathed a collective sigh of relief after Vlasic got back up:

It sounds like Olli Maatta won’t be ready for Game 3

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You’ve all seen it by now (if you haven’t, click the video at the top of page). Penguins defenseman Olli Maatta was forced to leave Game 2 against the Capitals after taking a late hit from Brooks Orpik. Not only was the hit late, but Orpik also caught Maatta in the head.

After the Penguins’ optional skate on Sunday, Penguins head coach Mike Sullivan wasn’t optimistic about Maatta’s chances of playing in Game 3 on Monday night.

“Olli’s being evaluated as we speak, so I don’t have any real update as far as his status is concerned,” Sullivan said, per the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “He’s being evaluated today, we’ll probably have more information in the morning.

“I don’t have a lot of sense of his availability. I’m probably not optimistic, though.”

After the game, Capitals coach Barry Trotz stood up for his defenseman.

“We’ll let the league handle it,” Trotz said, per CSN Mid-Atlantic. “If you know anything about Brooks, he plays hard, he plays clean. He’s not a dirty player.”

And the league certainly did handle it, as they suspended Orpik for three games.

Related:

Penguins coach takes issue with late, high Orpik hit on Maatta

Brooks Orpik suspended three games for hit on Olli Maatta

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Brooks Orpik has been suspended for three games for his hit on Olli Maatta (top). The Caps defenseman will be forced to miss Games 3, 4 and 5 of the best-of-seven series against the Penguins.

Orpik delivered a late, high hit to Maatta in Game 2. The Penguins defenseman was wobbly getting off the ice and he was unable to return to the game.

Here’s how the Department of Players Safety saw the play:

“Orpik steps up to pressure Bonino, who quickly moves the puck to Maatta. Orpik peels off Bonino to pressure Maatta, who releases a shot from the top of the circle. The two continue on their path toward the goal line, as the puck is kicked into the slot. A full second after Maatta releases the puck, Orpik delivers a high, forceful hit making significant head contact. This is interference.”

To watch the NHL’s Department of Player Safety’s full explanation, click the video below.

This is the third time Orpik’s been suspended in his NHL career.