LAST NIGHT'S GAMES:
- For the 3rd straight year, and 2nd in a row at the hands of the Tampa Bay Lightning, the Detroit Red Wings are one and done in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Alex Killorn scored with 1:43 remaining in the 3rd, breaking a scoreless tie and helping the Bolts advance to the 2nd round. Ben Bishop's shutout was his 4th career 0-fer in his playoff career. This probably feels familiar for Wings fans, as Bishop & the Bolts shut them out 2-0 in Game 7 last year. The questions will swirl about whether it's time for a rebuild in Hockeytown, especially with the expected retirement of Pavel Datsyuk, but one question that needs to be asked is: "who thought that this was a good idea?"
Yup, that's part of their awesome celebration of making the playoffs 25 years in a row. Funny because they've gone out 3 straight. Funnier if they don't make it next year. And funny because it's worse than any regular season or division championship banner any team's ever raised. That's Original 6 teams for you though. Out of touch with reality.
- Matt Murray became the youngest goalie in NHL history to record a playoff shutout, and Evgeni Malkin shooshed his doubters as he scored 2 goals and 2 assists en route to a 5-0 Pittsburgh Penguins ass-kicking of the New York Rangers. Eric Fehr, Sidney Crosby and Connor Sheary also scored. The Penguins can wrap this one up at home on Saturday. Henrik Lundqvist allowed 4 of the 5 Penguin goals before being replaced by Antti Raanta.
- Frederik Andersen was solid again for the Anaheim Ducks as they took both games in Nashville, this one by a 4-1 score as they evened their series at 2 games a piece. Ryan Getzlaf, Nate Thompson, Jamie McGinn and Andrew Cogliano scored for the Ducks while Mike Fisher got the lone Predators goal. The series now moves back to Anaheim as Nashville sets out to try and solve Andersen after notching their two wins against John Gibson.
- It looked like Chicago was cruising to a win before a 3rd period rally by the St Louis Blues tied things up and sent it to OT before *spits on the ground* Patrick Kane scored at 3:07 of the 2nd OT to give Chicago the 4-3 win and send the series back to the United Center trailing the Blues 3-2. Marian Hossa, Artem Anisimov, Arteri Panerin also scored for the Hawks, while the Blues got goals from Jaden Schwartz, Robby Fabri and David Backes.
- Washington can advance with a win at home tonight against the Philadelphia Flyers. The Flyers managed a win to prolong their suffering in Game 4, but this team doesn't have enough to stop what has been a fairly impressive Washington Capitals team so far.
- The Florida Panthers will look to regain the series lead at home tonight as they take on the New York Islanders in Game 5. Jaromir Jagr still hasn't hit the score sheet in this series, and you would think something has to give at this point. The Panthers will also need to try and neutralize John Tavares, who has been the Isles best player of the series so far.
- Dallas can punch their ticket to the 2nd round with a win over Minnesota tonight in the Lone Star state. They won't have Tyler Seguin again, and it's not known if this is a new injury or he's still recovering from the cut to his achillies tendon. Minnesota was the better team over the last two games, and are a little unlucky to facing elimination tonight, so expect them to come out hard and get this back to the Xcel Center for a Game 6.
- And finally, after fans of things good and decent were denied it last night, the hockey gods may make amends tonight if the San Jose Sharks can defeat the LA Kings. They've been money all year in the Staples Center, and aren't letting the disappointment of the Game 4 loss shake them, as they look to get a huge, narrative-spewing monkey off their back with a win tonight.
GAME DAY BATTLE HYMN
Had to dig a bit to find a decent metal cover of a Prince song to pay tribute to the legendary rocker who passed yesterday at the age of 57. This was part of a Norwegian 5 disc set paying homage to Prince, so here's ULVER and their version of 'Thieves In The Temple', a song from the Purple Rain soundtrack.