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Tag:New Jersey Devils
Posted on: March 22, 2011 3:49 pm
Edited on: March 22, 2011 4:00 pm
 

Playoff Watch: Caps are in with win over Flyers




WHO CAN CLINCH: The Washington Capitals can clinch their fourth consecutive trip to the postseason a few different ways tonight. The Caps are in if they beat the Flyers, get an overtime or shootout loss combined with a Carolina Hurricanes loss (in regulation or otherwise) or if Carolina loses in regulation to the Ottawa Senators

ALREADY IN: The Vancouver Canuck and Philadelphia Flyers. 

GAME OF THE NIGHT: Washington Capitals (42-21-10) at Philadelphia Flyers (44-19-8), 7:30 p.m. ET (Versus)

If memories haven’t already faded about that eight-game slide the Capitals had in December, a victory tonight might just do it. A win by Washington would pull them even in the points department with the Flyers atop the Eastern Conference. The Flyer will remain in first no matter what happens, however, since they have two games in hand on the Caps, which results in a better winning percentage. Here's a look at our playoff tracker.

The Caps will be without Alex Ovechkin, who the team announced Monday would be out seven to 10 days with an undisclosed injury. Arguably the Flyers most recognizable player, defenseman Chris Pronger, will also be out of the lineup as he recovers from an injury to his right hand that required surgery. The Flyers announced Tuesday that enforcer Jody Shelley would be out four weeks due to a fractured orbital bone suffered in practice. He will undergo surgery on Thursday. 

There’s still plenty of players left to make one of the East’s better rivalries interesting to watch. The Flyers won two of the first three meetings this season and all went to at least overtime. 

ALTERNATIVE VIEWING: New Jersey Devils (34-34-4) at Boston Bruins (39-22-10), 7 p.m. ET 

The Devils are getting close to the point where they need to run the table to make the playoffs. Two teams and seven points stand between New Jersey and eighth-place Buffalo entering Tuesday night’s action. The Bruins won the first two meetings this season. 

GOLF WATCH: The Colorado Avalanche and Edmonton Oilers won't get any new company tonight.  

-- A.J. Perez

Photo: Getty Images
Posted on: March 4, 2011 7:59 pm
Edited on: March 5, 2011 12:17 am
 

Kris Letang tossed after jersey comes loose

Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Kris Letang received a rare game misconduct for something he didnt' do.

Tie down his jersey. 

Letang apparently didn't loop the belt through the tab on the back of his Pens road jersey, something that became plainly evident when he squared off against New Jersey's Travis Zajac six minute into Friday's contest. Along with the fighting major each received, Letang was tossed from the game -- not a good thing for a Pens team that's already minus forwards Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Chris Kunitz due to injury.

Rule 46.13 states that jerseys not  “tied-down on”  on player who egnages in fisticuffs and that jersey become dislodged, a game misconduct must be called. A player doesn't receive the sanction if his jersey comes off even when its tied down due to equipment failure, although it does have to be reported to the NHL. 


Posted on: March 4, 2011 2:51 am
Edited on: March 4, 2011 3:10 am
 

Morning skate: Is this finally San Jose's year?



The San Jose Sharks, winners of the Western Conference the last two seasons, didn't look like they'd contend for much more than a low playoff seed, if that, just a few weeks back. 

Then Antti Niemi, the goalie the Sharks acquired from the Stanley Cup champ Chicago Blackhawks last offseason, took over. The Sharks have won 17 of the last 20 games -- all with Niemi in net -- including Thursday's 3-1 victory over Detroit Red Wings at HP Pavilion. Niemi (above) made 26 saves in his latest win.

The Sharks have won eight in a row, are tops in the Pacific Division and now sit three points behind the Red Wings in the Western Conference. (Here's a look at our playoff tracker.) 

The Sharks have integrated defensemen Ben Eager (acquired in from the Atlanta in January) and Ian White (acquired from Carolina last month) and are relatively healthy, minus defenseman Dan Boyle (upper-body injury) and goalie Antero Niittymaki (groin). Both are expected to return soon. The taht has a solid stable of forwards -- including Dany Heatley, who had a two-goal effort on Thursday -- and a capable defense. 

For a team that was a trendy pick for the few seasons to win it all, could this be the season where the Sharks advance to the Stanley Cup Final for the first time in franchise history? Maybe even win it all?

Or, are the Sharks just teasing us again?


A PLEA IN PHOENIX: After about two years, the Phoenix Coyotes ownership saga could be coming to an end. That's if a citizen watchdog group drops it objections over how the City of Glendale is helping finance the transaction via a sale to of $116 million in bonds. FOXSportsArizona.com's Matt Swartz reports the Glendale Mayor Elaine Scruggs and Greater Phoenix Economic Council leader Barry Broome spoke at a news conference on Thursday where they urged the Goldwater Institute not to follow through their threat of a lawsuit, which could prevent investor Matthew Hulsizer from taking over the team. Hulsizer said he intends to keep the team at Jobing.com Arena, although any more delays ups the chances that the league-controlled franchise that once called Winnipeg home could be headed back north of the border. 

GILLIES HEARING TODAY: New York Islanders enforcer Trevor Gillies is scheduled to meet with NHL officials in Toronto this afternoon to discuss Wednesday's blindside hit of Cal Clutterbuck of the Minnesota Wild. (Link to hit here.) TSN.ca reports that such in-person meetings usually mean a suspension of five or more games is on the horizon. Gillies had just returned from a nine-game suspension for a blow to the head delivered to Pittsburgh's Eric Tangradi on Feb. 11. Because of that, Gillies will be treated as a repeat offender. 

LINE CHANGES: Jason Arnott has acclimated himself pretty well in Washington. His slapshot late in the third period led the Capitals past the visiting St. Louis Blues, 3-2. That makes it one game-winning goal and a primary assist on a game-tying tally in Tuesday's victory over the Islanders since he arrived from New Jersey. . . . Philadelphia forward Kris Versteeg scored twice against his former club, but the Maples Leafs rookie goalie James Reimer made a key glove save in the closing seconds to preserve a 3-2 victory. The Leafs, who dealt Versteeg before the deadline for a first-and third-round picks, moved two within three points of eighth place in the East. . . .  The Buffalo Sabers, unable to score on a power play late in regulation, failed in thier bid to move into eighth place in the East, as Carolina won, 3-2, in OT. 
Photo: US Presswire

Posted on: March 3, 2011 1:42 am
Edited on: March 3, 2011 2:08 am
 

Morning skate: Flames lose game, maybe Morrison



The Calgary Flames may have lost more than a crucial couple points when they fell to the Chicago Blackhawks, 6-4, at the United Center on Wednesday. 

First-line center Brendan Morrison skated gingerly off the ice in the third period and did not return. NHL.com’s Dan Rosen reports that Flames coach Brent Sutter didn’t specify or how bad it might be. 

The victory by the Blackhawks -- their season-best sixth in a row -- moved the defendding Stanley Cup champs to fourth in the West.

Nine of the 10 teams in action Wednesday have at least a fathomable  shot at the postseason and the only one that didn't (the New York Islanders) played the role of spoilers. Here’s our playoff race tracker

GILLIES WASTES NO TIME: In his first game back from a nine-game suspension, New York Islanders forward Trevor Gillies went a little more than a period before he repeated the offense. Gillies blindsided Minnesota Wild winger Cal Clutterbuck, whose head hit the glass after the collision. (Clutterbuck had just hit Islanders rookie Justin DiBenedetto, which drew a penalty as well.) Gillies was given a five-minute major and a game misconduct. Clutterbuck got back up and was in the lineup as the Wild fell, 4-1. Chris Botta of The New York Time’s Slap Shot blog gives a full rundown with video

PARISE ON THE MEND: New Jersey Devils winger Zach Parise was cleared to skate on Wednesday, three months after undergoing surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his right knee. “He can begin skating lightly immediately,” Devils GM Lou Lamoriello said in a story on the team’s website. Parise has been out 51 games since hurting his knee Oct. 30. Rich Chere of The Star-Ledger reports that Parise would need a minimum of two more weeks of rehab before he can practice with the team, although there’s still a decent chance he could return by the end of the season. New Jersey edged the Tampa Bay Lightning, 2-1, to keep the Devils’ slim playoffs hopes alive. 

LINE CHAGES: The Toronto Maple Leafs unlikely run for a playoff spot continued with a 3-2 OT victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins. Mikhail Grabovski scored 42 seconds into the extra frame as the Leafs moved to within two points of the Carolina Hurricanes, who tenuously hold the eighth and final playoff spot in the East.  .  . . Bobby Ryan’s goal via penalty shot in overtime hoisted the Anaheim Ducks to a 2-1 victory over the Detroit Red Wings. Ryan was hauled down by Detroit defenseman Ruslan Salei just as he reached the net, resulting in the ref pointing to center ice. Here a link to the video
Photo: Getty Images
 
 
 
 
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