Goalie Antti Niemi of the Chicago Blackhawks stops Daniel Sedin of the Vancouver Canucks in close during the first period in Game 3 of the Western Conference Semifinals at General Motors Place in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. (Getty Images)
Posted on: May 6, 2010 12:17 am
Posted on: May 1, 2010 12:35 pm
Edited on: May 1, 2010 1:24 pm
Complete Bracket & Schedule
A look at news from around the league...
• Flyers looking to take Game 1 in series' first dance. [ Philadelphia News/Inquirer ]
• Bruins, Flyers have different styles, but get ready for a great fight. [ Boston Globe ]
No. 3 Vancouver Canucks at No. 2 Chicago Blackhawks, 8 p.m.
• Blackhawks know its all about stopping the twin duo of Henrik Sedin and Daniel Sedin . Henrik scored a career-high and NHL-leading 112 points. Daniel amassed a career-best 85 points in just 63 games.No team's top line boasts the same combination of firepower and hockey ESP, but then no top line features two players who literally have grown together since birth. [ Chicago Tribune ]
• Canucks' coach Alain Vigneault waiting to last minute to pick fourth line. [ Vancouver Province ]
• As Penguins move the puck more, the more effectively they have been on the power play. It's no surprise that the Penguins were four-for-four in the 6-3 victory over the Canadiens. [ Pittsburgh Post-Gazette ]
• It didn't take long for Sharks coach Todd McLellan to start sparring with Detroit counterpart Mike Babcock . Babcock stirred things up with his accusation after Game 1 that Devin Setoguchi embellished the Red Wings penalty that led to San Jose's winning goal, punctuating his charge with a geographic reference that made it more personal. "You're from Western Canada," Babcock said, "don't do that crap." [ San Jose Mercury News ]
Tags: Alain Vigneault, Boston Bruins, Boston-Philadelphia, Chicago Blackhawks, Chicago-Vancouver, Daniel Sedin, Detroit Red Wings, Devin Setoguchi, Eastern Conference, Eastern Conference Semifinals, Henrik Sedin, Jaroslav Halak, Johan Franzen, Jordan Staal, Josh Gorges, Mike Bobcock, Montreal Canadiens, Morning Skate, Philadelphia Flyers, Pittsburgh Penguins, Pittsburgh-Montreal, San Jose Sharks, San Jose-Detroit, Semis, Todd McLellan, Vancouver Canucks, Western Conference, Western Conference Semifinals
Posted on: April 28, 2010 8:16 pm
Edited on: April 28, 2010 9:52 pm
No. 2 Chicago Blackhawks vs. No. 3 Vancouver Canucks
Wes Goldstein's Take
The Blackhawks will win if: They are willing to pay the price by doing the little things like blocking shots, finishing checks winning battles along the boards and in corners. The grit factor wasn't always there against Nashville, and that should be a concern for a team that is very good and knows it. Complacency endangered Chicago against Nashville, with the Blackhawks ultimately winning out because their talent was superior. In reality, though, they survived the Predators more than beating them, and chances are they won't get away with that again, especially if goaltender Antti Niemi isn't steadier throughout.
The Canucks will win if: Daniel Sedin and Henrik Sedin do what they did against Los Angeles, which is put up a lot of points, and Mikael Samuelsson keeps scoring the way he did. That won't be easy against a more talented team, though, so Vancouver will need its secondary scorers to contribute a lot more than they did against the Kings. The penalty kill will have to be a lot better than it was against Los Angeles, which connected on nine of its first 16 chances. Roberto Luongo will have to be on his game from the outset because Chicago is a tougher team to rebound against.
How They Got Here
Chicago: Defeated the Nashville Predators, 4-2, in the Western Conference Quarterfinals ... Finished the regular season with a 52-22-8 record for 112 points (1st, Central Division)
Vancouver: Defeated the Los Angeles Kings, 4-2, in the Western Conference Quarterfinals ... Finished the regular season with a 49-28-5 record for 103 points (1st, Northwest Division)
Posted on: April 26, 2010 1:19 am
By Erin Brown
Posted on: April 26, 2010 1:03 am
Complete Schedule & Bracket
Series tied, 3-3
Vancouver leads, 4-2
Daniel Sedin scored with 2:03 to play, and the Vancouver Canucks rallied from another third-period deficit to finish off their first-round series against the Los Angeles Kings with a 4-2 victory in Game 6 on Sunday night. Recap | Stats
Posted on: April 26, 2010 12:18 am
Edited on: April 26, 2010 12:28 am
By Erin Brown
Alex Burrows scored his first goal in 11 games Sunday night, and to celebrate, he mimicked the act of shooting an arrow into the air.
Although the gesture was for his departed teammate and friend, Luc Bourdon, the motion could have easily sent another message: the Vancouver Canucks are back on target.
After an average start to a series against a youthful Los Angeles Kings team, the Canucks found their game, especially in the third period of the last three contests. Vancouver outscored Los Angeles 11-3 in the final 20 minutes of Games 4 through 6.
"We're resilient. We don't give up," Roberto Luongo said. "A couple times we had to come back in the third period in this series and we did it a bunch of times in the regular season. There's no quit in us."
Going forward, Vancouver's opponents will have to face a squad that appears to have worked out most of its kinks.
Luongo, while not among the league leaders in goals-against average or save percentage, has limited opponents to two goals in each of his last two games. Daniel Sedin snapped a 10-game slide of not scoring in a game where the Canucks had the ability to clinch a series. And then there's Burrows, Vancouver's leading goal-scorer during the regular season, who is back on the scoresheet.
"Even though it is an empty-netter, this time of year it doesn't really matter," Burrows said. "It's about the team and winning every game. We're really happy to get it done."The only weakness Vancouver needs to tackle before the Conference Semifinals is their penalty killing, which is dead last this postseason. The Canucks have successfully killed off just 61.5 percent of its infractions.
"PK has been a problem for us," Sedin said. "We picked it up the last two games, but this series would have been over a lot sooner if our PK had been better. I think that's one thing we can key in on."
Posted on: April 22, 2010 2:40 am
By Erin Brown
Tags: Alex Ovechkin, Boston Bruins, Buffalo Sabres, Buffalo-Boston, Daniel Sedin, Drew Stafford, Eastern Conference, Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, Henrik Sedin, Mike Knuble, Nicklas Backstrom, Quarters, Tuukka Rask, Vancouver Canucks, Vancouver-Los Angeles, Washington Capitals, Washington-Montreal, Western Conference, Western Conference Quarterfinals
Posted on: April 12, 2010 11:44 am
Edited on: April 20, 2010 12:01 am
Wes Goldstein's Take
The Canucks will win if: Roberto Luongo finally proves he is the elite goalie that everyone says he is. The Olympic gold medal he won didn't really do it, and the reality is, for all his kudos, Luongo hasn't been out of the second round. Even worse, he has struggled since the break. But the Canucks have assembled what is arguably the most talented lineup in franchise history. Vancouver can score and in bunches, with scoring champion Henrik Sedin and his twin, Daniel Sedin , leading the way. Alex Burrows , Ryan Kesler and Mikael Samuelsson provide nice support. The defense is a bit of a question mark because of injuries to Willie Mitchell and possibly to Sami Salo . The Canucks have home ice advantage and no team won more games in their own building.
The Kings will win if: Like the Canucks, they get the kind of performance from their starting goalie they are supposed to. Jonathan Quick was brilliant for most of the season, but faded down the stretch and failed to get his 40th win in eight consecutive tries. Still, the Kings finished with only two fewer points than Vancouver in the overall standings. Their blueline, led by young Olympians Drew Doughty and Jack Johnson , is the better one in this series. That could be the biggest edge for the Kings, who have three lines that can wear down teams with their ability to cycle the puck and control games when they have a lead.
Regular Season Recap
Vancouver: 49-28-5, 103 points (1st, Northwest Division)
Los Angeles: 46-27-9, 101 points (3rd, Pacific Division)
Tags: Alex Burrows, Conference Quarterfinals Preview, Daniel Sedin, Drew Doughty, Henrik Sedin, Jack Johnson, Jonathan Quick, Los Angeles Kings, Mikael Samuelsson, Quarters, Roberto Luongo, Ryan Kesler, Sami Salo, Vancouver Canucks, Vancouver-Los Angeles, Western Conference, Western Conference Quarterfinals, Willie Mitchell