Round two roundup – Habs Halak still stopping while Savard & Bruins take a bite out of Philly

Last night Chicago dodged a bullet. Having been throttled 5-1 in game one by the Canucks, they found themselves trailing 2-0 after the first five minutes of game-two. Heading into Vancouver down two games to none would have been extremely un-good for the Blackhawks.

Kris Versteeg's third period goal gave the Blackhawks a 3-2 lead with 90 seconds remaining (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

Kris Versteeg's third period goal gave the Blackhawks a 3-2 lead with 90 seconds remaining (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)

Brent Seabrook’s goal at the 7:40 mark of the first period closed the gap and the score remained 2-1 going into the third. But that’s where Chicago took over as Patrick Sharp scored a short-handed goal and Kris Versteeg gave the Hawks the lead with just 90 seconds remaining. Patrick Kane then added an empty netter 42 seconds later, his 6th goal of the post-season.

The Hawks outshot the Canucks 13-6 in the final 20 minutes despite taking the only two penalties in that final frame.

Seabrook’s goal was his first of the post-season and he also added two assists Monday night, finishing the game a +4 for Chicago.

Earlier in the evening Boston once again slipped by Philadelphia 3-2 thanks to Milan Lucic’s blast with just 2:57 remaining in the third period. With the win they head down to Philly needing just two wins in the next five games to advance to the Conference Finals for the first time since, I believe, they were swept by the Penguins in 1992.

During a second-period scrap, Philadelphia’s Daniel Carcillo complained that Marc Savard had chomped on his finger. 

“Last time I have been bit was in grade school. It is not a good feeling. It is pretty cowardly,” Carcillo said after the game. “Guys don’t bite. Men don’t bite.”

Savard…ahem…turned and pointed his finger back at the Flyer.

“He pummeled on my face,” Savy slyly said. “He pulled on my teeth, so I guess that’s biting when a guy tries and pull your front teeth out.”

Tuukka Rask is now 6-2 in the playoffs with a 2.32 GAA and .922 SV% while Boston’s 92.9 % effective penalty kill leads all teams in the post-season so far.

Tonight, the Montreal Canadiens will look to take advantage of their split in games one and two played in Pittsburgh. After suffering an off night in Friday night’s game one…allowing four power play goals on four Penguin’s opportunities…they held Pittsburgh’s offense at bay, giving up one goal and denying them on all three power play chances.

The Habs have killed off 35 of the 40 man-advantages they have faced so far in the nine games they have played in the playoffs…35 of the 36 not counting game-one against the Pens. Special teams play could play a major role in this series given Pittsburgh’s 31.4% effective power play leads all eight teams remaining in the playoffs. If the Habs PK unit continues to shine, that can only help them in their second consecutive upset bid this spring, (DUH5).

Michael Cammalleri’s 8 goals tie him with Vancouver’s Mikael Samuelsson for second most during the playoffs to date and his 13 overall points are third. Sidney Crosby, of course, leads all scorers with 16 points, (5 goals 11 assists).

Also, there is Jaroslav Halak… whose .931 SV% is tops of all keepers not-yet eliminated from post-season play. Sunday he stopped 38 of 39 Penguins shots faced in their 3-1 game-two win.

Later on in Motown, the Sharks will look to continue feeding on octopi. The Big Red Borg face what can really only be classified as a “must win” situation after dropping both games played in San Jose. The Sharks Joe Pavelski is making his case for the Conn Smythe Trophy with a playoff-high 9 goals and 14-point performance in 8 games played. He’s a +7 as well.

Evgeni Nabokov continues his good work this spring. He is now 6-2 with a .916 SV% and playoff-low 2.02 GAA…this even though the Red Wings have netted six goals on 54 shots in their two losses.

Meanwhile…Down On The Farm

The Chicago Wolves find themselves tied with the Texas Stars at one game apiece with the Texas Stars in their AHL Western Conference playoffs series. The Wolves outlasted Texas to win game-two 4-3 in double overtime Sunday…the winning goal being scored by Anthony Stewart, his second of the game and 6th of the playoffs.

Patrice Cormier thought he had scored his first goal as a member of the Wolves during regulation, but the refs waived it off citing he’d lost sight of the puck. Later during the first overtime, a Chicago goal was disallowed as it was ruled kicked into the net.

Along with Stewart’s two goals, Jason Krog and Spencer Machacek also scored for the Wolves while Peter Mannino stopped 35 of the 38 shots he faced for the win. Mannino allowed 4 goals on 28 shots while Krog, Stewart and Joey Crabb scored for Chicago.

Texas won game-one 4-3 in overtime last Friday night on a power play goal by Garrett Stafford while Crabb sat in the box for high sticking.

The series now moves to Texas for the next three games starting with tonight’s game-three.

133 comments Add your comment

Dandylions

May 4th, 2010
12:13 pm

M. Savard pulled a M. Tyson last night – loser.

Savannah Blueland Fan

May 4th, 2010
12:26 pm

I’m sure it wasn’t the first time Carcillo complained of someone using their teeth….

Sorry, that was mean but I have to defend my player!

World Be Free

May 4th, 2010
12:28 pm

I remember Carcillo chickening out against Boulton this season, rather fihght Slater instead. I think that sez enough about Carcillo.

Pittsburgh Pirate Fan

May 4th, 2010
12:31 pm

Too bad local TV won’t broadcast Wolves’ games on TV. That makes too much sense since we must have a constant overdose of tattooed, gangster basketball.

Nate

May 4th, 2010
12:47 pm

I couldn’t help but think “Patrick Sharp sure would look nice in a Thrashers uni next season” when he scored that shorty last night…

Thrashers27

May 4th, 2010
12:49 pm

Carcillo’s a turd. I’d love to drop the gloves with him.

World Be Free

May 4th, 2010
1:07 pm

Versus showed Carcillo yelling F – U to the Brunes bench last night. it’s the same thing Carcillo did to Boulton in the penalty box before he chickened out to Bolts. Nothing worse that a cry-baby coward.

Matt

May 4th, 2010
1:55 pm

*sarcasm alert!!* “Boy, I’m sure glad the Thrashers didn’t re-sign Savard, what a waste that would have been!!” *end sarcasm alert*
(Yes, I realize he didn’t want to sign here, but it’s just another example of the failure of the front office over the years.)

Gary Wright

May 4th, 2010
2:28 pm

Nate: As long as you and Smoothie keep filling out your dream team roster for next year’s Thrashers, why not toss in the Bobby Ryan scenario too?

World Be Free

May 4th, 2010
2:31 pm

G-W //I think everyione is just tossing around names that might work here. Whether they can be had is another matter, but it is nice to discuss the odd player that may be an upgrade over our current roster, especially when you consider that some teams will need to dump talent becuase of their respective cap situations.

it could happen-though it is not likely.

kracker

May 4th, 2010
2:33 pm

It’s very good to see Cormier playing again after his suspension. If he plays capably in the AHL playoffs, Dudley will perhaps conclude that he can project Patrice as a roster player next season. Or if needs a year in Chicago, it’s even more important to know that before this summer’s roster adjustments.

TableHockey

May 4th, 2010
2:41 pm

“Guys don’t bite. Men don’t bite.” – Carcillo better hope Hartnell doesn’t hear he made that statement since he supposedly did the same thing late last year: http://sports.yahoo.com/nhl/blog/puck_daddy/post/Hartnell-s-end-of-game-meal-allegedly-included-K?urn=nhl,194967

On a Thrashers note – Vinny Sapanari was kicked off of the Boston University hockey team. http://nhl.fanhouse.com/2010/05/04/boston-university-kicks-thrashers-prospect-saponari-off-team/

Smoothie

May 4th, 2010
2:50 pm

Gary Wright (and anyone else for that matter): I’d rather be accused of wishful thinking rather than not thinking at all…and simply repeating myself ad nauseam, which seems to happen a lot around here. :wink:

Woody Allen

May 4th, 2010
3:02 pm

I wanted someone younger than Mia Farrow and ended up with my “stepdaughter!”

That’s the kind of wishful thinking we need more of around here!

Cliff Fletcher

May 4th, 2010
3:09 pm

Smoothie

you means guys like Sage?

MB

May 4th, 2010
3:19 pm

As much as I can’t stand them, I’ve been very impressed with the Flyers (and Peter Laviolette) in the post-season. Even losing key guys like Carter and Gagne, they’ve played a determined, committed, TEAM game. Something has clicked for them…definitely not the same team that lost back-to-backs against the T-Birds in late March.

Still can’t believe the Habs won in Pittsburgh on Sunday. Thought they were completely outplayed, but they blocked shots, clogged the crease, and Halak shone yet again.

Terrific game last night in Chicago…more along the lines of what was expected. May be sleep deprived now that the series heads to Vancouver.

Sharks and Wings? Hopefully the return home is good for Detroit. Datsyuk has been amazing, though. And in San Jose, who needs Jumbo Joe when you have Junior Joe averaging nearly two points a game?

I have to admit, though, that as I’m watching these games, there’s a part of me saying “thank goodness the Thrashers DIDN’T make the playoffs…they’d have been annihilated!” Seeing the intensity, the physical play, and the degree to which every single puck is challenged…well, let’s just say that the way we played coming down the stretch as we “battled” for a playoff spot doesn’t really breed a lot of confidence in our ability to succeed in the post-season. But I would have said the same of Philly and Montreal, and look where they are.

Rawhide

May 4th, 2010
3:39 pm

MB - Agree with you regarding Philly. They are down 2-0 to Boston due to an OT goal and late goal in the third period. They’re playing good, hard-nosed team hockey…what a team needs to play in the playoffs.

Also, I think your thoughts regarding the Thrashers had they made the playoffs are correct as well. Many would not have given them much of a chance had they won just 3 more games and made it in…(as a 7-seed). But then again, how many of us gave Montreal and Philly much of a chance either. Not me.

Just proves that ya gotta get in to have a chance…then make the most of that chance.

Russ

May 4th, 2010
3:45 pm

Sorry to go off on a tangent, but I was just on ESPN and read a few articles about the 17 year old kid getting tasered after running on the field at the Phillies game last night. I can’t believe some people on there are actually saying the officer used excessive force and that if the cop was in better shape he could’ve and should’ve just caught him and tackled him. Regardless of the physical condition of the officer, shouldn’t the top priority be to restrain this kid ASAP? Nobody that was trying to stop him, or the players and fans for that matter, knew what kind of threat this kid was. He could have pulled a gun out of his pocket at anytime. Even though he ended up not being a threat, you never know and I don’t think anybody would be complaing about the tasing if they found out later that he did have a weapon on him. I say good job bringing him down and protecting the public safety. It’s hard to believe that some are actually worried about the kids’ rights when he is the idiot breaking the rules being out on the field in the first place.

Russ

May 4th, 2010
3:47 pm

Sorry, now back to your regular hockey discussion.

Go Wings!!! (at least until someone else has a chance to knock Heatley out of the playoffs).

Joe Friday

May 4th, 2010
3:47 pm

Savard’s got issues. He was suspended while playing for us for doing the same thing. Carcillo is a chump, but he’s right, men don’t bite. He should be suspended for the next game, but I don’t think there’s good enough video of it.

“Jaroslav Halak… whose .931 SV% is tops of all keepers”

Nice! As long as he stays hot, they can beat anyone. Get me a goalie (and no, we don’t have one on the roster).

“Evgeni Nabokov continues his good work this spring. He is now 6-2 with a .916 SV% and playoff-low 2.02 GAA”

Oh look, there’s one!

“I couldn’t help but think “Patrick Sharp sure would look nice in a Thrashers uni next season” when he scored that shorty last night”

You and me both, from your mouth to Ricky Don Wadudley’s ears…Sharp is a player and precisely the missing link we need filled here.

Great finish to the Hawks’ game last night. Can do without the looks at Vince Vaughn’s smarmy smirk, even if he is cheering for my boys. But the shots of Stan, Espo and the Golden Jet whooping it up made my night. giddyup, this is going to be a hell of a series that’s just getting started, Game 3 should be a war.

Lee

May 4th, 2010
3:51 pm

Whoot!!!!! Go ‘Hawks!!! I’d like to see Patrick Sharp in blue! Phft. What am I thinking? Yep, Dudley would probably take him, but I forgot that “Mr. President” has to approve of it.

MB

May 4th, 2010
4:07 pm

One other thing…who was the Versus hostess Sunday night? She pretty much added nothing.

Rawhide

May 4th, 2010
4:11 pm

Nice! As long as he stays hot, they can beat anyone. Get me a goalie (and no, we don’t have one on the roster).

Joe Friday – I believe what you mean is…”get me a legitimate, top-notch, dependable, solid, proven, honest-and-for-true, USDA-Grade-A…the likes of which we’ve never really had before…goalie”.

Red Light

May 4th, 2010
4:44 pm

Allow me to clarify Mr. Rawhide’s statement

“Byron Dafoe was a No. 1 goalie playing 64 games or more in 3 seasons and winning more than 30 games in each of those but certainly not by the time he reached Atlanta. Pasi Nurminen and Kari Lehtonen could have become a No. 1 were it not for injuries and Norm Maracle was a No. 1 goalie in Detroit for one week (Nov. 21-29) in 1998 when he kicked aside 93-of-99 shots and won four straight games for the Wings,” he said snickering.

In case you missed it, Joe Friday wants Nabokov. Smoothie wants Patrick Sharp and Tomas Holmstrom, World Be Free and I would like Craig Ramsay as head coach, Sage thinks Dudley is a puppet and…

Brendan is composing a longer version of War and Peace.

Carry on…

Smoothie

May 4th, 2010
4:56 pm

Then we should talk to Montreal about making a trade for Carey Price. His career SV% is .912 which is about 1% higher than Pavelec’s. The one major difference is that Ondrej has had to face an average of about 2 more shots per game. Whether or not that has contributed to his much lower SV% is hard to say. He seems to generally play better the more shots he faces, but then again, he has been pulled about 7 or 8 more times than Price. Right now the difference seems to be in the range of 15-20 more goals allowed over 50 or so games. And that is the difference between a GAA of 3.25 and 2.80.

By the end of the season, our defense was yielding closer to 32 shots per game as opposed to the 34 or so that Ondrej commonly faced earlier in the year. Knowing that Ondrej has mechanical issues that need to be ironed out, it sure would be nice to have the assurance of a Carey Price to take over the # 1 job if Pavelec can’t get it together. And with Price a RFA, the price to get him might not be as high in terms of salary as a Nabakov or Turco. Question is do we really want to part with the assets (i.e. prospects) to take a chance on Price?

Compared to Pavelec, Price hardly seems like a reclamation project.

Smoothie

May 4th, 2010
5:01 pm

Red Light – I want Sharp, Holmstrom, Kubina or Volchenkov and Price!!

Can we do it for $14-15 M in free agency? Technically yes. Will our newly minted GM be given such a budget to spend. Probably not.

So I’d settle for Sharp, Holmstrom and Shaone Morrisonn at $9-10 M.

Brendan

May 4th, 2010
5:19 pm

No, no book today, Red Light. I just want a Red Wing win, to get this series back on track. I hope the Penguins hang 8 on the Habs. This talk about comparisons betwen Halak and Dryden/Roy in other forums has me nauseated. They did the same think to Carey Price in 2008, when Montreal was the #1 seed in the East. As I recall, Boston came storming back in that series, to force a 7th game. But Montreal won. I think the Flyers took them out in five, in the next round, ending the Price comparisons to Dryden/Roy.

Red Light

May 4th, 2010
5:46 pm

Brendan: The Wings have come back to win just 3 of 10 series after falling behind 2 games to none since 1975 or so. But, the last time they came back to win a series after being down 2-0, they won the Cup. That was in 2002 when the beat Vancouver in the first round. I’ll stick with the Sharks for now!

Red Light

May 4th, 2010
5:49 pm

Expectations are a horrible thing for a young goalie. It’s not the early 70s. BTW, Montreal is just 7-13 in its last 20 home playoff games and just 13-23 in the playoffs since moving to the Bell Centre.

Brendan

May 4th, 2010
6:53 pm

All encouraging signs for the PenGUINOS!!, Red Light. Normally, I’d be rooting for San Jose against Detroit. But not while Heatley’s there. Go Wings!!!

World Be Free

May 4th, 2010
7:12 pm

Russ-don’t get me going on the lack of support in general for police officers. AJC is guilty too for calling police offiicers “cops”. They are not cops, they are police officers.

Wish we were back in the day when “cops” used their own judgement. Had alot less crime then.

Screw ESPN too-they stink

World Be Free

May 4th, 2010
7:16 pm

Red Light – nice summarey and I want Ellis as the goalie. Nothing against Nabakov, I just think it would take too much $$$ to get him-he has no other reason to come to Atlanta.

Sign Sergei Gonchar instead

Smoothie-don’t know if Montreal is going to trade Price. Halak has some issues playing alot, he seems to break down, though you haven’t seen it much in the playoffs so far. This is from the Montreal media. Plus, it will cost us.

Spud Webb

May 4th, 2010
7:43 pm

I CANNOT believe I’m sitting here rooting for the frogs. WOW…….I’ve got myself speechless.
and LETS GO SHARKS!!! Can’t stand Heater, but love Pat m and thorton.

R. Stroz

May 4th, 2010
7:52 pm

According to Savard and Ruutu, NHL stands for National Hannibal Lecters.

Brendan

May 4th, 2010
10:11 pm

Red Wings are blowing this game vs. San Jose. They lead, 3-1, in the 3rd. It’s 3-3, heading to overtime.

Brendan

May 4th, 2010
10:15 pm

If San Jose wins this game, I doubt even the mighty Red Wings can overcome a 3-0 series deficit with San Jose. Looking for a silver lining? Imagine if the Red Wings do fall behind 3-0, then win the series, 4-3? Think the Sharks won’t dismantle the back-to-back #1 seed from the West? I’d say … they make sweeping reforms. It’d be inexcuseable for that team not to close out a 3-0 series lead, even if the opponent is Detroit. We’d all know that … the Sharks CANNOT elevate their game to Cup contendership, if that happened. They’ve been too good, for too long, to simply stand pat. There’s a lot riding on this season, as it is, for San Jose.

HookyBob

May 4th, 2010
10:40 pm

Wooooo…

The Big Red Borg is down 3-0 on a beautiful goal by Thorton.

R. Stroz

May 4th, 2010
10:45 pm

The Winged Wheel just lost their LUGNUTS.

HookyBob

May 4th, 2010
10:48 pm

Whoops.

Make that Marleau with a beautifully setup goal.

R. Stroz

May 4th, 2010
10:55 pm

Alan….

Alan….

Alan….

WINGS SUCK

Brendan

May 4th, 2010
11:24 pm

Now, R.Stroz. Let’s not pour salt in any fresh wounds. But I am … well … surprised. Yes, I’m surprised. I had the Red Wings in six. I doubt Maggie, the Monkey had SJ in four. Last year, the eventual Stanley Cup Champions were in the same boat as Detroit was tonight. The Penguins trailed Washington, 2-0, in the series, facing overtime, AT HOME, in Pittsburgh. Kris LeTang scored to put the Penguins back in the series. That didn’t happen for Detroit.

Cause for concern: Detroit led Game Two, 3-2, entering the 3rd period. They lost, 4-3. Tonight, they led SJ, 3-1, in the 3rd period, and gave up three unanswered goals to effectively become eliminated. It’s been something like 35 years since the last time that a team brought a 3-0 series deficit to a 7th game. Overdue????? If any team can do it, Detroit can. Few teams choke like San Jose. So, it’s not entirely over, but it ain’t lookin’ too good for Detroit.

So, let me ask the Red Wings fans. “What went wrong?” (1) Poor goaltending by Jimmy Howard? (2) Stupid penalties? Leading to PPGs? (3) Lobsided officiating?? (4) Being robbed by disallowed goals? (5) Mike Babcock didn’t have them prepared, or prepared a poor game plan? (6) The Red Wings are “too old,” and are aging still? (7) Something else?

I’m interested in hearing the responses. Let’s not “bash” the Red Wing fans. Let’s try to have a civil discussion. The Red Wings are … “the model franchise” of the league, since 1993. Let’s show some respect, in their lean moments, here.

Smoothie

May 4th, 2010
11:43 pm

Brendan – its kharma right! First Hossa and now Bertuzzi! Hockey gods aren’t havin’ it!

Seriously, I think the window is starting to close rather abruptly for the Aged, um I mean, the Winged Wheel. They just look old and slow and the mojo is gone.

Red Light

May 5th, 2010
7:08 am

Perhaps San Jose is just a better team with their second line doing most of the damage through nine playoff games. The Sharks seem to have learned the little things make a difference this year. Wings are dead. You don’t blow a 3-1 3rd period lead in a must-win game and come back to win a series.

World Be Free

May 5th, 2010
7:56 am

Spud-I can’t make myself root for Montreal as I did in the 70’s when the Habs had Lafleur. What is interesting about Montreal, is how many of us ragged on the Habs last summer when they went out and swooped up a bunch of UFAs. Most of those UFAs are playing pretty good right now. Gutting your team but not offering contracts to players and replacing them with UFAs is a model that may be used by others. Cammie, Metro, Moen, Gill and Spacek (before he got hurt) have all played well for Montreal.

Red Light-San Jose is a better club. Detroit looks pretty old too; no that there’s anything wrong with that! Draper and Lidstrom have both lost a step, a few others look like they are out of gas. The only thing that keeps me from cheering for San Jose to make it is Heatley. Does that guys ever throw a body check or does he just use his stick?

Who was on the ice for the last minute for Pittsburgh?
Sergei Gonchar-should be our #1 target for a UFA, a difference maker.

World Be Free

May 5th, 2010
8:01 am

Nice piece in the Buffalo News about Dudley-Bucky Gleason is a pretty good hockey writer.

http://www.buffalonews.com/2010/05/04/1040416/gleason-dudley-tries-his-luck.html

Tom

May 5th, 2010
8:20 am

Brendan

I hope someday our Thrasher’s have the chance to have “lean moments” like the Red Wings.

Bluenote

May 5th, 2010
8:48 am

Good read from Buffalo WBF. The Dudley-as-a-puppet stuff just doesn’t seem to be based on much history. Clearly he had plenty of options before taking on a turnaround project here…and a decent track record. If he could clean up the mess Mr. Wirtz left him in Chicago it can be done here.

Winning, heart and accountability solve a multitude of problems

Feu Rouge, a tip of the hat for your constant historical and statistical fact-checks. You are a walking encyclopedia. I mean that in the the best possible way.

Red Light

May 5th, 2010
8:59 am

TY Bluenote. There is something to be said about knowing where you’ve been before you can know where you’re going. Whoever said streaks are made to be broken didn’t watch sports.

Savannah Blueland Fan

May 5th, 2010
9:01 am

Hey! The minor-league baseball team in Lansing, Michigan, is the Lugnuts!

Good going, Detroit! Can’t blame last night on crappy officiating. Just a bunch of old guys resting their keisters in the penalty box…penalties that were EARNED, this time.

Tough luck, Montreal…I was cheering for you even though it nearly killed me (on account of your obnoxious fans). BTW–I am on record via this very blog as saying that Crosby has matured this year as far as the diving. Then what does he do last night at the end of period 2? Crumples to the ice like drunk high-schooler, cowering and holding his head! All for nothing! What a loser!

Red Light

May 5th, 2010
9:03 am

Nice to read an article about anything related to the Thrashers that doesn’t mention Waddell isn’t it?