The Eastern Conference Final has shifted to Tampa Bay, all even at one-game apiece between the Lightning and Pittsburgh Penguins.
Both teams look to gain the lead in this series in Game 3 at Amalie Arena on Wednesday. You can catch the game on NBCSN (8 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:
Bolts have ‘more in the tank than what we’ve showed’: Cooper
Sullivan praises Rutherford for ‘retooling’ Penguins roster
Cooper optimistic Bishop will play again in series
After 21 years of calling New York Islanders games on television for MSG Networks, Howie Rose will not return for the 2016-17 campaign.
According to Newsday, Rose, also the radio play-by-play announcer of the New York Mets, told MSG Networks of his decision on Wednesday. The decision was made, as per the report, to reduce his workload.
“It’s the textbook definition of mixed emotions. That’s exactly what it is. I don’t know that I’ve ever been more conflicted about a decision I have had to make in my life. But I’m confident I made really the only one I could make at this point in time in my career and life,” he told Newsday.
From the Islanders:
His voice has become synonymous with big Islanders moments, which culminated in his final game call of John Tavares‘ overtime, series clinching goal at Barclays Center in Game 6 of the team’s first round Stanley Cup series against the Florida Panthers.
Filip Forsberg followed up an impressive rookie season a year ago with a career-best 33-goal, 64-point campaign for the Nashville Predators. But his point production dipped in the playoffs.
In 14 post-season games, the 21-year-old Forsberg scored twice with four points, and was held without a point in the final four games of Nashville’s second-round series with the San Jose Sharks. Such struggles can certainly point to signs of a likely injury or ailment of some kind, but few if any details are divulged until a team is eliminated or the playoffs end.
Two days after a second-round loss for Nashville, Forsberg revealed he had been dealing with an ailing back.
Forsberg is a pending restricted free agent, having just concluded the final season of his entry-level contract worth a total of $4.475 million, as per General Fanager.
From The Tennessean:
A portion of the Predators’ core — Fisher, captain Shea Weber, goaltender Pekka Rinne — is aging, but the future foundation is in place, with defenseman Roman Josi, forward Filip Forsberg and center Ryan Johansen all 25 or younger.
This season, Josi officially became the Predators’ most valuable defenseman, and Forsberg, who is a pending restricted free agent in position for a massive raise, was one of the NHL’s most prolific scorers in the second half, tying the team’s single-season record with 33 goals.
Logan Couture‘s 2015-16 season got off to a wretched start.
He was injured in practice after just three games in October. It was then revealed he actually suffered a broken fibula and, at the time, was expected to miss four to six weeks. He ended up missing 23 games. So, yeah, that’s a miserable beginning to the season, as the Sharks hoped to rebound from missing the 2015 playoffs.
Two games after returning to the lineup in December, Couture was again sidelined with a “small arterial bleed” after suffering what was initially suspected to be another lower-body injury.
Despite a difficult three months to begin the season, Couture has been playing his best hockey in these playoffs.
He leads all players with 17 points in 12 games in these playoffs. And the Sharks have earned a spot in the Western Conference Final against the St. Louis Blues, after exorcising demons against the L.A. Kings in the opening round and beating the Nashville Predators in a hard-fought seven-game series in the second round.
“He was outstanding. He’s just getting better. … I can’t underestimate how traumatic an injury he dealt with in the first half of the year. Everyone saw how much we missed him,” Sharks head coach Pete DeBoer told CSN Bay Area.
“To get him back now, he’s fresh, obviously. He’s getting back to 100 percent, and we’re seeing the season he maybe could have had had he been healthy all year. He’s an elite player.”
Related: Sharks’ Marleau: ‘These opportunities don’t come along every year’
Robby Fabbri‘s first foray into Stanley Cup playoff hockey has been a productive one so far.
Aside from drawing the ire of goalie Corey Crawford in the opening round, Fabbri leads all rookies with 13 playoff points — six ahead of Sharks’ forward Joonas Donskoi — and is tied with Vladimir Tarasenko for the team lead in the same category, as the St. Louis Blues have advanced to the third round.
Despite an even-strength five-on-five Corsi For rating of 46.5 per cent, Fabbri is playing at a clip of 3.4 points per 60 minutes, as per War-on-Ice. In 14 games this post-season, he’s recorded three goals and 13 points.
Not bad for a player that turned 20 years old in January and, listed at 5’10” tall and 180 pounds, may be considered by some to be “undersized.”
“He hasn’t got pushed out emotionally,” Blues coach Ken Hitchcock told reporters. “He’s allowed himself to remain composed in critical spots in games. When the game is on the line, he’s played with sound composure. He hasn’t panicked. He hasn’t got emotionally so revved up that his focus has gotten narrow.
“What he’s got going is the composure to make plays under pressure with no panic in his game, which has allowed him to be a good player late in games. That’s why there’s so much trust from the coaching staff.”
The Blues and San Jose Sharks begin the Western Conference Final on Sunday.