San Jose Sharks v Los Angeles Kings - Game Five

‘Don’t stink’: Sharks’ Gomez gives advice for Game 7


The formula for winning a Game 7 in the Stanley Cup playoffs doesn’t seem too difficult. Right?

“Don’t [stink],” San Jose Sharks’ veteran forward Scott Gomez told, reportedly in a joking manner.

“What I was told was don’t change your game. Do what got you here. Obviously every emotion is going to be running high. When the game comes we’ll be ready. It’s exciting for us.”

The Sharks face the L.A. Kings, the defending Stanley Cup champions, in Game 7 of the Western Conference semifinal series on Tuesday.

The winner advances to the conference final, where they will face either the Detroit Red Wings or Chicago Blackhawks, who will also be engaging in that most-exciting seventh and deciding game on Wednesday.

“You’re playing for your lives. You have to be desperate,” Sharks’ forward Logan Couture told reporters, as per a video post on the team’s website and seen below.

For the Kings, their reign as Cup champions is in question.

Last year, they never faced elimination, rolling over the competition throughout the post-season, beginning with the Vancouver Canucks in the opening round and finishing with a Stanley Cup win over the New Jersey Devils.

“After what we did last year, I always say you don’t really know what you’re playing for until you’ve won it,” Kings’ captain Dustin Brown told the L.A. Times.

“So my perspective on playoffs this year has been completely different from my perspective on playoffs in previous years because I don’t think I fully understood what I was playing for until we put ourselves over the top.

“And that’s kind of the same way with losing. It’s hard to understand what it takes to win until you lose.”



Vatrano presence: Bruins edge Red Wings in overtime

Frank Vatrano David Krejci
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The Boston Bruins keep flipping the script.

In Wednesday’s case, it swerved to a “Cinderella” story, as little-known forward Frank Vatrano scored two of Boston’s three goals – including the overtime clincher – as the B’s beat the Detroit Red Wings 3-2 (OT).

Here’s his first goal of the night:

While this is his overtime game-winner:

It wasn’t a perfect night for the 21-year-old, yet it may have been a convincing one.

The Bruins continue to begin a month on a sour note before ending up with impressive sprees.

October: 0-3-0 start, finished month with four straight wins and victories in six of seven contests.

November: 0-3-0 start, losses in four of five; currently on a four-game winning strek with victories in five of six.

Boston faces a challenge in closing this month out against the Rangers on Friday, and it’s possible that this trend may continue, as they begin December with a three-game road trip through Western Canada.

More than anything else, the safest bet with the Bruins is for ups and downs.

Crosby roars, Malkin scores in OT for Penguins win

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Controversy just seems to find the Pittsburgh Penguins. Credit Sidney Crosby & Co. for responding with a win on Wednesday.

Crosby generated two pretty goals, including this slam-dunk slapper:

… While Evgeni Malkin‘s overtime-winner stood as the Penguins managed a 4-3 overtime win against the St. Louis Blues tonight.

(You can see Malkin’s OT-clincher in the video above this post.)

Will this win and strong performance from Crosby silence murmurs about his relationship with Mario Lemieux? Probably not, yet it likely turns the volume down in some ways, including killing the “Is he struggling because of distractions” storyline.

You know, at least for a little while. Maybe.

Fight video: Claude Giroux vs. Nick Leddy

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Claude Giroux isn’t the nastiest, most physical captain the Philadelphia Flyers have employed. Even so, he can be feisty at times.

Wednesday showed that, as he clearly wasn’t happy with an earlier Nick Leddy hit, and eventually got the New York Islanders defenseman to drop his gloves.

You can see the fight and the check that inspired that scrap in the video above.

It’s the fourth fight Giroux has been a part of, with his most recent adversary being may his most bitter rival.

Not a heavyweight bout between Giroux and Leddy, mind you, but sometimes it’s amusing to soak in such a rare sight.

Update: The fight may have inspired the Islanders more than the Flyers, as they bested Philly 3-1 on Wednesday.

Carter Hutton gets flipped, stays in game

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Carter Hutton is getting something that might make fellow Nashville Predators goalie Pekka Rinne jealous: goal support.

Still, there was at least one moment where Rinne was likely happy to be on the bench, as Hutton was left flipping during this collision with Buffalo Sabres forward Marcus Foligno:

Remarkably, Hutton remained in the game.

If you’re the type who loves adding to your “hockey players are tough” files, put this under the goalies section.

Check out this incredible shot of that moment:

Update: The Predators held off the Buffalo Sabres to win 3-2.