Tag:2011 NHL Playoffs
Posted on: May 3, 2011 4:15 pm
Edited on: May 3, 2011 4:16 pm

Lightning's Kubina, Gagne to miss more time

Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Pavel Kubina will miss his second consecutive game for a hit that he hinted may have deserved another look by league officials. 

“Of course, I saw it a couple times,” Kubina told reporters before Game 3 of the first-round series against the Washington Capitals today. “It’s Mr. (Colin) Campbell’s decision. It’s not mine.”

Kubina’s head was driven into the boards during the second period of Game 1 by Caps forward Jason Chimera. The hit drew roughing minor, but Campbell, the NHL’s disciplinarian, did not dole out a suspension. Kubina only described his injury as “upper body,” although it appears that Kubina and forward Simon Gagne -- who also went down in Game 1 with an apparent head injury -- could be dealing with concussions. 

Lightning coach Guy Boucher also said the duo were also likely be out for Wednesday’s Game 4. 

“If I want them to play tomorrow, I better start praying,” Boucher cracked. “They won’t play. They are day-to-day except for today and tomorrow. ”

-- A.J. Perez
Posted on: May 3, 2011 3:57 pm
Edited on: May 4, 2011 12:04 am

Lightning assistant "alert" after brain surgery

Tampa Bay Lightning assistant Wayne Fleming was "awke and alert" after undergoing lengthy surgery Tuesday to remove a malignant brain tumor, head coach Guy Boucher told reporters after his team's 4-3 victory over the Washington Capitals

“That was the first thing we talked about," Boucher said. "We didn’t talk about the win.“

Fleming underwent surgery to remove the tumor in Irvine, Calif., an operation that reportedly was supposed to take eight hours or longer. The Lightning announced last month that Fleming had been diagnosed with the tumor and he’s already had one surgery to address it. 

“We did bring it up, but we didn’t draw on it for inspiration,” Boucher told reporters earlier in the day. “We bought it up to make sure the payers are aware of what’s going on. It’s not something we want to hide. It’s obviously a very, very serious operation and, to be honest with you, personally, I can’t wait to see how it went. It’s a very tough day for him, his family and for our team.  We care about the man. Hockey is way behind all that.”

Fleming has remained in contact with Lightning players and coaches through text messaging and the team dedicated the first round of the playoffs to him. 

"This is a big family and he's a big part of ,” Lightning defenseman Randy Jones told The St. Petersburg Times. “Your thoughts and prayers are with him and you're thinking about him. . . He'd want us to go and focus 100 percent on this game and work hard, and that's what we have to do."

-- A.J. Perez
Posted on: May 3, 2011 12:23 am
Edited on: May 3, 2011 2:26 am

Boucher dislocates finger, returns to Game 2

Philadelphia Flyers goalie Brian Boucher only separated a finger this time.

Boucher -- who was forced out of Game 5 of a second-round series against the Boston Bruins after he injured both knees a year ago --- missed the final nine minutes of the second period to repair a finger on his left (catching) hand. He returned for the third period and was in net when Boston’s  David Krecji secured a 3-2 overtime victory. 

At least in this instance Flyers coach Peter Laviolette -- who used three goalies in the first round -- wasn’t replacing a netminder to just shake things up. Boucher, who allowed two first-period goals as the Flyers relinquished a 2-0 lead, rebounded and finished with 32 saves on the night. 

Even though it was widely reported by CSN Philadelphia and elsewhere that Boucher dislocated his finger, Laviolette told reporters that Boucher had “a malfunction.” 

Well, I guess that sounds a little better than an upper-body injury, right? 

-- A.J. Perez
Posted on: May 2, 2011 9:00 pm
Edited on: May 2, 2011 9:09 pm

Thousands join God Bless America rendition

A good portion of the 19,000-plus fans at Game 2 of Boston Bruins-Phiadelhia Flyers at the Wells Fargo Center Monday joined Lauren Hart (and the late Kate Smith on the video board) in the singing of God Bless America, a stirring tribute that comes a day after President Obama announced the death of Osama bin Laden.

The crowd also observed a moment of silence before the game.

-- A.J. Perez

Posted on: May 2, 2011 7:42 pm
Edited on: May 3, 2011 2:27 am

Flyers' Pronger sits, Bruins lose McQuaid

Philadelphia Flyers defenseman Chris Pronger was scratched from the lineup for tonight’s Game 2, although it reportedly has nothing to do with his injured hand. 

The Flyers aren't talking, but CSN Philadelphia's Tim Panaccio cites a person in the know:

Pronger left Game 1 of this series nearing the two-minute remaining mark of the third period and did not return. He appeared to be fine on Sunday, though moving with a slight limp, which is not uncommon for any player this time of year.

Could he have pulled his hamstring while favoring his back? That seems to be one possibility here. The Flyers aren’t talking, but Pronger is expected to return to the series for Game 3 on Wednesday in Boston.
  Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren would not comment other than to say the defenseman has an undisclosed injury.. 

He missed Monday morning's skate, but Pronger was not listed the team's injury update. Pronger has one point and was a minus-3, averaging 13 minutes, 55 seconds over the three playoff games he played.

The Bruins lost a defenseman of their own, Adam McQuaid, to a scary injury late in the first period. McQuiad attempted to deliver a hit to Flyers forward Mike Richards, who ducked the collision. McQuaid collided awkwardly with the boards headfirst and lay on the ice for a couple minutes before he was helped off the ice.  

McQuaid, whose injury was not disclosed, was transported to an area hospital for observation. The Bruins announced that McQuaid would travel back with the team on Tuesday.

-- A.J. Perez
Posted on: May 2, 2011 3:10 pm
Edited on: May 2, 2011 9:41 pm

Complaint launched against Vancouver Green Men

Could the green be going in Vancouver?

The green, of course, are the famed Green Men, “Force” and “Sully”, who sit clad in spandex next to the opposing penalty box at Canucks games. They have gained plenty of attention in the last two seasons with their taunting tactics when opponents enter the sin bin, including such things as handstands, Wild dances and cutouts of famous opposing fans in Canucks clothes.

Check out this most recent one with Carrie Underwood, wife of Nashville’s Mike Fisher, with a Vancouver sweater on.

Well, news has leaked out that a complaint has been filed with the NHL to curb the duo’s dancing and actions. Many are speculating the complaint came from the Predators considering the timing of it all. TV analyst and former goaltender Glenn Healy is saying the complaint did, in fact, come from the Predators.

Courtesy of Jason Botchford:

But Healy, who has become the point man on this story, was again incredulously discussing it on TEAM 1040 Monday morning. Still offended with [the Green Men], he said Nashville issued a former complaint and, as a result: "The rule has been laid out."

So what have the two now controversial men been told? Apparently to back off on the glass touching and to stop the handstands.

Now, Botchford says the two are headed to Smashville for Games 3 and 4, although no word on where they will be sitting.

If this complaint did, indeed, come from the Predators, then mission accomplished for the superfans. Admittedly, they are trying to get the other team out of sorts with their antics, take them “out of the zone,” as one says.

I say no harm, no foul. They are paying customers and aren’t crossing any lines from what I can tell. It’s no different than fans slapping the board every single time the puck is played in front of them. Every time .

There’s a Facebook group to save the Green Men. If you want to see what makes the men tick, check out this video.

-- Brian Stubits

Posted on: May 2, 2011 12:48 pm
Edited on: May 2, 2011 7:32 pm

Boucher to get start in Flyers' net for Game 2

The Philadelphia Flyers will stick with Brian Boucher in goal for tonight’s Game 2, two days after he allowed five goals on 23 shots in a series-opening loss to the Boston Bruins

“Brian will go back in net today,” Flyers coach Peter Laviolette told CSN Philadelphia. “Today, for me, is a game where we all get to go back in there and try and right some wrongs. So everybody gets an opportunity. He deserves it.”

Boucher emerged as the starter after Laviolette used three goalies -- Sergei Bobrovsky and Michael Leighton being the other two -- in the first round. Bobrovsky, who will serve as the backup tonight, replaced Boucher in the second period of Game 1 and allowed two goals on 10 shots. 

Despite Boucher’s lackluster Game 1, those in his locker room weren’t about to lay the blame for the 7-3 loss at the 34-year-old veteran’s crease, reports CSN Philly’s Sarah Baicker and Tim Panaccio:
“Boosh has bounced back tremendously after bad games,” Scott Hartnell said. “We didn’t give him any help whatsoever in Game 1, a lot of rebounds, two and three guys at the net walking away while our defense and forwards were sleeping somewhere else.”

From the outside, the Flyers’ situation in net certainly appears unorthodox. In the team’s last 14 playoff games (going back to last season), Laviolette has pulled a goalie six times. But for the Flyers, in a way, that’s just business as usual. 

“We haven’t cared all year long,” Danny Briere said. “Both of them [Boucher and Sergei Bobrovsky], they’ve been good for the most part. Like everybody else, they’ve had some tougher games. But we all do. But it never mattered. It’s not going to start at this point.”

-- A.J. Perez
Posted on: May 2, 2011 5:00 am
Edited on: May 2, 2011 5:08 am

Death of bin Laden takes precedence in Capital

A good portion of we media types who covered Tampa Bay Lightning-Washington Capitals game Sunday night made our way over the White House, which is less than a dozen blocks away from the Verizon Center. 

Hundreds of Capitals fans -- since they didn’t have to file stories, I guess -- beat us there, as did a few thousand others who came together to cheer the announcement that Osama bin Laden has been killed. Here’s the story I filed on the scene there on Pennsylvania Avenue

Casey Engle, a student at the University of Maryland, tells us why he chose to wear a Caps jersey to the impromptu festivities.  

The news that bin Laden had been killed leaked out minutes after the Capitals 3-2 overtime loss. As Sam Saliba, a sales manger from Herndon, Va., said, the fact Washington dropped the first two games of the best-of-7 series didn't matter much at that point. 

-- A.J. Perez
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