Yelnats Cup Playoffs: Recap for 04-18-2011

Things we've learned today:

- Throwing octopi on the ice, not cool, but throwing a big hit on a player's head directly after you're done with a suspension, cool. Trevor Gillies and Garth Snow must be crying injustice. Is the NHL's love affair with the Blackhawks over? Well, maybe not, considering this ''goal'' saved their season.

- We're going to be defending Mikko Koivu's contract again this summer. Maybe someday, he'll get the respect he deserves.

- Guillaume Latendresse is a defensive juggernaut. I know a certain Quebec-based fanbase that would beg to differ.

- Heart and hard work don't win games. Of course, we already knew that, right Tom? I know a certain legendary Minnesotan coach who would beg to differ here as well. I'll give you a hint: his surname rhymes with ''crooks'', although that word has nothing to do with him.

Anyhoo, enough with that miniature version of Thought Bubble, on to the recaps. 4 games on the docket:

Calgary Flames @ Edmonton Oilers

Toronto Maple Leafs @ Florida Panthers

Atlanta Thrashers @ Ottawa Senators

Columbus Blue Jackets @ Minnesota Wild

Join me after the jump for 4 servings of text-based Game 3 action!

Calgary Flames @ Edmonton Oilers

1st period:

Curtis Glencross is making an early case for the Conn Smythe trophy. Who would've thunk it? He started the scoring with his 4th goal of the Playoffs, assisted by Rene Bourque and Jay Bouwmeester. Nothing much happened after that between the two bitter rivals. Edmonton had 10 shots in the period, Calgary had 12.

2nd period:

It took all of 28 seconds for Lance Bouma to give his team a 2-0 advantage with a one-timed blueline slapper, assisted by Bouwmeester and Anton Babchuk. Then, Jarome Iginla took an ill-advised revenge penalty after Theo Peckham got in his face and the Oilers made it count. Linus Omark scored on the powerplay at 6:30 with the aid of Andrew Cogliano and Gilbert Brule. Sit tight folks, the third period is where things got interesting!

3rd period:

The first 10 minutes of the period was back-and-forth, plenty of shots each side, but then, Glencross potted his second of the game assisted by Olli Jokinen. Of course, that goal might've made them jumpy, because they took another penalty and the Oilers capitalized once again with a Cogliano goal, assisted by Jeff Petry and Ryan Jones. The final 5 minutes were a whirlwind. Liam Reddox potted a hard-working (sorry Tom) goal at the 16:25 mark to knot things up at 3 a piece. Omark had the lone assist. Mere seconds later, Olli Jokinen reclaimed the lead, assisted by Steve Staios, but Edmonton wasn't even fazed by that goal as they answered back 13 seconds later with a Ryan Jones goal, assisted by Jason Strudwick. The two teams combined for three goals in 57 seconds. ON TO OVERTIME!!!....

Overtime:

Boom, Oilers take a bad penalty and suffer a heart breaking loss. Rene Bourque jumped on a Glencross rebound to win it for the road team, 5-4 in OT

In short, the Oilers showed a lot of HEART and scrapped their way to OT, but a costly mistake made it a loss. The problem is they waited too long to come to life. 3-0 in the series for Calgary, alert status red for Edmonton. There was an uncharacteristically low number of penalties between both teams, perhaps it's because they saw how deadly both powerplays were.

Game Summary:

Period                          1               2             3            OT            Total

CGY                              1               1             2              1                 5 

EDM                              0               1             3              0                 4

 

PIM CGY                      0               2             2              0                 4

PIM EDM                     0               0             2               2                 4

 

SHOTS CGY             12             11           8               3                  34        

SHOTS EDM             10              9          15               4                  38

 

3 stars:

#1 Curtis Glencross (2G, 1A, beast)

#2 Ryan Jones (GTG, A)

#3 Rene Bourque (OT winner, A)

 

Toronto Maple Leafs @ Florida Panthers

1st period:

This was a high octane game once again, making this series unexpectedly interesting and exciting. First of all, it's the only series in which there has been fights! Second of all, it's a tight battle. Nicklas Bergfors started the scoring with the help of Sergei Samsonov, who's proving to be a better acquisition than anyone thought, and Mike Weaver. Dion Phaneuf answered with a powerplay slapper at the 9:39 mark with assists going to Joffrey Lupul and Nazem Kadri. Shots were pretty even and Florida took 2 minors, Toronto had 1. 1-1 after 20.

2nd period:

This period was all Toronto. Clarke Macarthur scored with assists going to Keith Aulie and Lupul and captain FANOOF got his second of the game 5 minutes later and Phil Kessel helped him out. Between the two goals, Sergei Samsonov (what?)  and Joey Crabb scrapped, with the Leaf coming out on top again (of course... SAMSONOV?). Let me remind you Darryl Boyce had won the fight against Darcy Hordichuk in game 1. Toronto held a 11-7 advantage in shots for the period. How would the Panthers respond, trailing 3-1?

3rd period:

Another fight, only this time, it was David Booth who came out on top against Nazem Kadri (interesting combination) and it gave the Panthers some life. Jay Garrison scored with assists by Mike Santorelli and Bergfors. However, the Maple Leafs held on to take game 3 3-2. The Panthers did all they could, firing 14 shots towards James Reimer, while Toronto only shot 8, but Optimus Reim defended his net well.

2 fights in this one, lots of fury from both sides. The birth of a rivalry? Maybe I should send this recap to both teams. Toronto leading the series 2-1 now as the Panthers drop one at home.

Game Summary:

Period                         1                 2              3                 OT               Total

TOR                             1                2               0                    -                     3

FLA                              1                0               1                    -                     2

 

PIM TOR                   2                 5               5                    -                   12  

PIM FLA                   4                 5                5                   -                     14

 

SHOTS TOR         11              11               8                   -                      30

SHOTS FLA          10                7              14                 -                       31

 

3 stars:

#1 Dion FANOOF (2G)

#2 James Reimer (29 saves, 2GA)

#3 Joffrey Lupul (2A)

 

Atlanta Thrashers @ Ottawa Senators

Before we begin, not sure how I missed this one, but it turns out Chris Thorburn got injured on game 2 and is expected to miss 3-4 weeks. On to the show.

1st period:

The Senators were big bullies in this game. They got 3 minors in the first, all of which were some form of interference or cross-checking, but it didn't matter, because they got the only two goals of the period. Erik Condra scored first, assisted by Bobby Butler and Marek Svatos and then, superstar sniper Matt Carkner got a goal from the blueline with helpers to Condra and Milan Michalek. Atlanta held a 12-9 advantage in shots, but they can thank the powerplays for that.

2nd period:

Things toned down a tad, but Ottawa still got 2 minors, Atlanta got one. Radek Dvorak got things going for the Thrash, scoring with the assistance of Evander Kane and Alex Burmistrov at 5:05. Shots were even at 10 a piece for the second period, 2-1 Ottawa .

3rd period:

The Senators added a powerplay insurance marker at 11:44 on the only penalty the Thrashers got in the period. Erik Karlsson was the author of the goal and Colin Greening and Filip Kuba were his two assistants. The game ended on a rather sour note when Francis Lessard obliterated Evander Kane and got 5 for boarding and a misconduct. Kane turned out to be OK, but the team clearly was not. Tempers flared, but the Thrashers couldn't take advantage of the 5 minute powerplay. Ottawa won it 3-1

3-0 series lead for Ottawa, but you can bet the Thrashers are coming out with their guns ablazing in game 4,seeking retribution for the Lessard hit.  

Game summary:

Period                      1                   2                 3                  OT              Total

ATL                           0                  1                  0                     -                    1

OTT                          2                  0                  1                     -                    3

 

PIM ATL                  2                  2                   2                    -                    6                  

PIM OTT                 6                  4                  15                   -                   25

 

SHOTS ATL         12                10                  9                  -                    31 

SHOTS OTT          9                 10                 9                   -                    28 

 

3 stars:

#1 Craig Anderson (30 saves, 1GA)

#2 Erik Condra (1G, 1A)

#3 Radek Dvorak (G)

 

Minnesota Wild @ Columbus Blue Jackets

1st period:

Talk about an uneventful period. Seems like these two teams are always turning in these low shot, low scoring games doesn't it? No scoring, shots were 6-6, no penalties at all, lots of sleeping fans.

2nd period:

The curse of the second period reared it's ugly head, what a surprise. Scottie Upshall scored on the powerplay after  took a hooking penalty. Rick Nash (ARRRRGH) and R.J. Umberger got the assists. CBJ pummeled the Wild with 10 shots on net while our team took a measly 3 shots. The BJs took no penalties in the second period.

3rd period:

Seems both teams saved the exciting hockey for the third period. First of all, Clayton Stoner got a major penalty at the very start of the period, which was quite ill-advised. Luckily, the Blue Jackets only got one goal out of it. Jakub Voracek got a beautiful feed from Fedor Tyutin to make it 2-0 6:07 into the 3rd period. Anton Stralman got the second assist (what, no Rick Nash?). The Blue Jackets returned the favor however, giving the Wild a powerplay, which they turned into an Eric Nystrom goal, assisted by Nick Schultz and Brent Burns. In the final stretch of the game, Martin Havlat got an amazingly clutch, deketastic goal against Steve Mason at the 17:55 mark. Clayton Stoner and Chuck Kobasew got the assists. Despite holding a commanding 16-9 shot advantage, the Blue Jackets surrendered a 2 goal lead to bring the two teams into OT.

Overtime:

The Blue Jackets took a major penalty of their own in OT, the absolute worst time to take one. Seems like a lot of teams are taking penalties in OT and it ends up costing them. Well....... not this time. The Wild's Succubus powerplay made an appearance, as they could not get anything done with that 5 minute man-advantage. However, they still found a way to prevail, as Pierre-Marc Bouchard, the clutchiest clutch scorer for the Wild this year, completed the Wild's comeback effort with the help of Mikko Koivu and Martin Havlat. Wild win 3-2 in OT.

Zippeedeedooda! The Wild are leading the series 3-0 thanks to another enormous game from Niklas Backstrom, the Wild's early Conn Smythe candidate. That third period is where he really shone for this team, stopping 15 shots, 34 overall. The BJs are in trouble, can the almighty Rick Nash save them? We'll find out in two days.

Game summary:

Period                               1              2              3                  OT              Total

MIN                                    0             0              2                      1                    3

CBJ                                   0              1              1                     0                    2

 

PIM MIN                           0             2               7                      0                   9

PIM CBJ                         0              0              4                       5                   9 

 

SHOTS MIN                  6              3             9                        4                   22

SHOTS CBJ                 6             10           16                      4                   36

 

3 stars:

#1 Niklas Backstrom (34 saves, 2GA)

#2 Martin Havlat (GTG, A)

#3 Pierre-Marc Bouchard (OT winner) 

 

PLAYOFF TREE

WESTERN CONFERENCE

#9 Dallas Stars

bye

 

#10 Calgary Flames -  3

#15 Edmonton Oilers  -  0

 

#11 St.-Louis Blues  -  0

#14 Colorado Avalanche  -  3

 

#12  Minnesota Wild  -  3

#13 Columbus Blue Jackets  -  0

 

EASTERN CONFERENCE

#9 Carolina Hurricanes

bye

 

#10 Toronto Maple Leafs  -  2

#15 Florida Panthers  -  1

 

#11 New Jersey Devils -  1

#14 New York Islanders -  2

 

#12 Atlanta Thrashers  -  0

#13 Ottawa Senators  -  3

 

Playoff leaders:

GOALS

#1 Curtis Glencross, CGY, 5

#2 Zach Parise, NJD, 5

#3 Ilya Kovalchuk, NJD, 3

#4 David Jones, COL, 3

#5 P.A. Parenteau, NYI, 3

 

ASSISTS

#1 Travis Zajac, NJD, 6

#2 John Tavares, NYI, 5

#3 Matt Moulson, NYI, 5

#4 Ty Wishart, NYI, 5

#5 Ilya Kovalchuk, NJD, 4

 

POINTS

#1 Travis Zajac, NJD, 7

#2 John Tavares, NYI, 7

#3 Ilya Kovalchuk, NJD, 7

#4 Curtis Glencross, CGY, 7

#5 Matt Moulson, NYI, 6

 

+/-

#1 Jason Spezza, OTT, +4

#2 Curtis Glencross, CGY, +4

#3 Lance Bouma, CGY, +4

#4 Nick Foligno, OTT, +4

#5 Josh Bailey, NYI, +4

 

SV%

#1 Niklas Backstrom, MIN, 0.967

#2 Craig Anderson, OTT, 0.960

#3 Miikka Kiprusoff, CGY, 0.914

#4 James Reimer, TOR, 0.913

#5 Ondrej Pavelec, ATL, 0.907

 

GAA

#1 Niklas Backstrom, MIN, 0.70GAA

#2 Craig Anderson, OTT, 1.30GAA

#3 Steve Mason, CBJ, 1.88GAA

#4 Ondrej Pavelec, ATL, 2.59GAA

#5 James Reimer, TOR, 2.67GAA

 

SHUTOUTS

#1 Niklas Backstrom, MIN, 1

#2 Craig Anderson, OTT, 0

#3 Ondrej Pavelec, ATL, 0

#4 Steve Mason, CBJ, 0

#5 Miikka Kiprusoff, CGY, 0

 

WINS

#1 Niklas Backstrom, MIN, 3

#2 Craig Anderson, OTT, 3

#3 Miikka Kiprusoff, CGY, 3

#4 Peter Budaj, COL, 3

#5 James Reimer, TOR, 2

 

For the next fews days, I may have trouble posting these because I'll be losing my internet connection sometime tomorrow because I'm moving back home soon, but I'll try to find a way, even if it's just game summaries.

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