The Western Conference Finals are set. Phoenix VS Los Angeles will meet with a ticket to the Stanley Cup Finals on the line. It will be a goalie show down between Mike Smith and Jonathan Quick who have both been exceptional.
Nashville Predators season ended Monday night and now the focus shifts to their off-season decisions. Several players have expiring contracts including Shea Weber, Alex Radulov who will be restricted free agents, and Ryan Suter, Andrei Kostitsyn, and Jordan Tootoo who will be unrestricted. No question the Preds will desperately attempt to retain both Suter and Weber. With the antics of Radulov and Kostitsyn, I would suspect the team lets both players walk in attempt to sway Weber and Suter to stay.
If Suter signs elsewhere, resigning Weber may be difficult. As hard as losing both players would be, the Preds could absorb the loss. Weber is a RFA and the Preds would be compensated if he signed elsewhere, or if they trade him. The Preds also have several promising young defenders such as Ryan Ellis, Kevin Klein, and Roman Josi. The fantasy value of these young players would take off with the loss of Suter and Weber as a massive amount of ice time would open up.
In the East, what a finish to game five between Rangers, and Caps. With less than 30 seconds to go and the Caps up by one, Joel Ward took a brutal double minor for high sticking. Brad Richards scored with seven seconds to go to tie the game and force over time. Then while still on the power play, Marc Staal scored the winner off a point shot. Tough loss for the Caps, dramatic and unbelievably exciting win for the Rangers! That's hockey!! (Gotta feel bad for Ward wearing the goat horns today!)
Jacob Josefson who has been injured with a broken wrist is all healed up and ready to resume skating. He will return in the playoffs if this series goes the distance, or in the next round if the Devils win and advance to the Eastern Conference Finals.
Claude Giroux has been suspended for one game for his hit to the head of Dainius Zubrus and will miss game five Tuesday night as the Flyers face elimination. Often teams rally around the loss of a super star player, as the Devils won with out Kovalchuk, and the Preds won without Radulov and Kos****yn.
Vancouver Canucks announced they have signed GM Mike Gillis to a contract extension. That likely means Head Coach Alain Vigneault will remain with the club, and that Roberto Luongo will be traded.
If you are looking for prospect news, check out Dobber Prospects where player profiles are updated regularly by a crack writing staff lead by Brendan Ross @RossyYoungblood, and Rich Dillon @RichDillon17 with contributions from Miika Arponen @miikaarponen, Russ Bitley @Russbites, Geoff Guthe @GGuthe, Zenon Herasymiuk @ZenonHerasymiuk, Derek LeBlanc @d_leb and myself @pharling
Glen Hoss has a great read on Dobber on fostering manager activity in your fantasy hockey league with tips and insights. I love the GM of the year award!
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Brad Richards game tying goal
Marc Staal scores the OT winner