Patrice Bergeron

NHL Awards, Part 1, to be announced this evening

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Just a reminder that the winners of the Bill Masterton Memorial, Frank J. 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 announced this evening at 5 p.m. ET on the NHL Network. If you’re not around a TV, the show will be streamed live at NHL.com.

Tomorrow at 7 p.m. ET (right before Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final), the Hart, Calder, Norris, Vezina trophies, along with the Ted Lindsay Award, will be revealed 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

Fights, hits and a blown kiss: Stars and Blues get nasty

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Things were getting out of hand between the Dallas Stars and St. Louis Blues on the scoreboard in an eventual 6-1 Blues win.

They were also getting a little raucous on the ice when it was clear that the Stars weren’t going to stage a comeback.

Jamie Benn was whistled for cross-checking Alex Pietrangelo, but it was Stephen Johns‘ hit from behind on Pietrangelo really revved up the violence.

Watch that hit and then the scrum that ensued in the video above, which included a scary display of an angry Ryan Reaves … who got creative at the end.

You may also want the kiss alone, so here it is:

Memo: rough stuff might not work so well against the Blues.

Read about that blowout here.

Blues bombard Stars, go up 2-1 in series

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Sometimes a final score is misleading. In the case of the St. Louis Blues’ 6-1 thrashing of the Dallas Stars, it might just be the start of the story.

Honestly, the most positive thing the Stars can say is “Well, at least it was just one game.”

It was one ugly game, however, and now the Blues hold a 2-1 series lead with a chance to really take control if they can win Game 4 at home.

The Blues dominated just about every category on Tuesday, firing more shots on goal, enjoying better special teams play and throwing more hits. They even blocked a higher number of shots, which often isn’t the case for the squad that carries play.

This leaves the Stars picking up the pieces, especially when it comes to their work in their own end.

Do you put greater blame on struggling goalies Kari Lehtonen and Antti Niemi or is this more about the Stars’ lax defensive coverage? The scary answer may be “Both,” and the Stars likely know that they need to find answers quickly.

On the bright side for Dallas, it is just one game … and the Blues were searching for answers of their own after Game 1.

We saw the Blues turn things around with these two straight wins, so now the Stars must show that they can gather themselves and play the attacking, out-score-your-mistakes style that got them here.

Granted, they may have to keep an eye out for supplemental discipline after some rough stuff toward the end of the game.

Predators smash Sharks to get back in series

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After a dispiriting 1-0 goal allowed by Pekka Rinne, things were looking bleak for the Nashville Predators for a moment there.

Nashville’s developed into a resilient group, however, and they stormed back for a commanding 4-1 win to shrink San Jose’s series advantage to 2-1.

The Predators saw some of their big names come up huge as the series shifted from San Jose to Nashville.

Pekka Rinne looked sharp following that first goal (and didn’t allow another). Their goals came from James Neal, Colin Wilson, Filip Forsberg and captain Shea Weber.

Weber’s tally was the game-winner, and it was downright thunderous:

Another promising sign: after a struggling to a 2-for-31 clip in previous playoff games, the Predators’ power play went 2-for-5 in Game 3.

Overall, the Predators really couldn’t ask for much more from this win, especially if Colton Sissons is indeed OK after a scary crash into the Sharks’ net.

Things could get really interesting if Nashville manages to “hold serve” with another home win on Thursday.

Stars’ goalie carousel goes around again: Lehtonen replaces Niemi

Dallas Stars goalie Antti Niemi (31) subs in for goalie Kari Lehtonen (32) during the third period of an NHL hockey game, Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2015, in Dallas. The Stars won 6-5. (AP Photo/LM Otero)
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It’s pretty tough not to make jokes about the Dallas Stars spending $10.4 million on their goalies at times like these, even if Dallas’ defense should shoulder plenty of blame.

After Kari Lehtonen was pulled from a Game 2 loss, the St. Louis Blues chased Antti Niemi early in the second period of Game 3 after Niemi allowed three goals on 12 shots.

Troy Brouwer‘s 3-1 goal was enough for Lindy Ruff to give Niemi the hook:

Unfortunately for the Stars, Lehtonen got off to a slow start as well, allowing an immediate Vladimir Tarasenko goal.

The Blues are now 4-1 and the Stars are searching for answers … and probably wishing Tyler Seguin was around to help them out-score their problems.