Congratulations to the Pittsburgh Penguins on winning the 2016 Stanley Cup. The Penguins defeated San Jose Sharks last night in Game 6 of the series, 3-1 and winning the series 4-2. It is the fourth championship for the Penguins in the franchise history. Congratulations to Sidney Crosby on winning the Conn Symthe Trophy as the most valuable player in the playoffs.
At first, I felt that gave it to him out of popularity, but his contribution in the last game probably gave it to him. I thought his teammates, Phil Kessel or Matt Murray, had far more contributions in leading the team to winning their fourth Cup. But, it is not about the best player in all the series, but the one would made most impact in the final series.
So alas, I guess it is alright to touch the Prince of Wales trophy before the Finals.
Congratulations to the San Jose Sharks on winning the Campbell Bowl as the NHL Western Conference last night by defeating St Louis Blues in best of seven, 4-2. The Sharks will play the winner of the Eastern Conference, Pittsburg Penguins or Tampa Bay Lightning, on Monday. It will be their first appearance in the Stanley Cup Finals.
NHL announced this past Wednesday the finalists for the 2013 Vezina Trophy. The Vezina Trophy is awarded annually “to the goalkeeper adjudged to be the best at his position,” as voted by the general managers of the 30 NHL clubs. This year’s finalists are Sergei Bobrovsky of the Columbus Blue Jackets, Henrik Lundqvist of the New York Rangers and Antti Niemi of the San Jose Sharks.
The winner will be announced during the 2013 Stanley Cup Final.
All the finalists this year are European. It great praise of the many talented European players have joined the league in the last decade.
The leader choice for this year’s award would be Lundqvist, but I wouild not count out Niemi has a potential winner.
The chase for the 2012 Stanley Cup begins tomorrow. In the States, NBC, CNBC, NBC Sports Network, and NHL Network (US) will be broadcasting the games. NHL.com has great coverage for this year’s playoff. Check out the schedule link and each of the quarterfinal links below.
|Rangers – Senators||Rangers in 5|
|Bruins – Capitals||Bruins in 6|
|Panthers – Devils||Devils in 6|
|Penguins – Flyers||Penguins in 7|
|Canucks – Kings||Canucks in 5|
|Blues – Sharks||Blues in 6|
|Coyotes – Blackhawks||Blackhawks in 7|
|Predators – Red Wings||Predators in 7|
In reviewing my Western Conference picks, I correctly pick the correct winners, going 2-0. Overall, I am 8-4. I predicted the total games correctly, 13, but I had the number of games for each series reversed. So, I am unchanged at +3 overall. The schedule for the next round can be found here.
These two West Coast teams are pretty familiar with each other. Although Vancouver took the regular series 3-1, three of their games were one goal games involving a shoot out. So, there is a good chance that there will be multiple overtime games in this series. Each team has had contributions from different players to date. Anyone on their team could be a difference maker in this series. The big question is who will it be? Vancouver has gotten some rest, but rest does not guarantee success like Washington found in the prior round. Yet, both teams have dealt with series in which they had to win game 7 after taking a commanding 3-0 lead.
Vancouver goalie Roberto Luongo has to deal with yet another demon in this round. This time around it is Sharks goalie Antti Niemi, last year’s Stanley Cup goalie. Luongo was out played by Niemi last year in the Conference Finals and must play well for his team to reach the Cup Finals.
From the games I watched on TV, their inconsistent play in their respective series does not give me a warm fuzz in predicting a winner in this series. On paper both teams are pretty much evenly matched. This series has the potential to go 7.
Pick: Canucks in 7
Last week, the NHL announced the finalist for the Calder Trophy (top rookie) are Michael Grabner of the New York Islanders, Logan Couture of the San Jose Sharks, and Jeff Skinner of the Carolina Hurricanes. NHL story is here.
These three rookies are the 1-2-3 in rookie goal scoring. Each have an interesting way in becoming a finalist. Check NHL story for details. Out of this group, Jeff Skinner has had the greatest impact. Skinner was invited to the All Star Game and lead all the rookies in points. Most media people say Skinner is the favorite to win it. I would agree that Skinner will win it.
The 2011 NHL Awards will be held at the Pearl Concert Theater at the Palms Hotel in Las Vegas on June 22. The ceremony will be broadcast by VERSUS in the United States and CBC in Canada.
With the Flyers win tonight, here is the schedule from the NHL:
Here is the full schedule for the 2010 Stanley Cup Playoffs Conference Finals:
|2010 EASTERN CONFERENCE FINALS
|Sunday, May 16||at Philadelphia, 7:00 p.m.||VERSUS, CBC, RDS|
|Tuesday, May 18||at Philadelphia, 7:00 p.m.||VERSUS, CBC, RDS|
|Thursday, May 20||at Montreal, 7:00 p.m.||VERSUS, CBC, RDS|
|Saturday, May 22||at Montreal, 3:00 p.m.||NBC, CBC, RDS|
|*Monday, May 24||at Philadelphia, 7:00 p.m.||VERSUS, CBC, RDS|
|*Wednesday, May 26||at Montreal, 7:00 p.m.||VERSUS, CBC, RDS|
|*Friday, May 28||at Philadelphia, 7:00 p.m.||VERSUS, CBC, RDS|
|2010 WESTERN CONFERENCE FINALS|
|Sunday, May 16||at San Jose, 3:00 p.m.||NBC, TSN, RDS|
|Tuesday, May 18||at San Jose, 10:00 p.m.||VERSUS, TSN, RDS|
|Friday, May 21||at Chicago, 8:00 p.m.||VERSUS, TSN, RDS|
|Sunday, May 23||at Chicago, 3:00 p.m.||NBC, TSN, RDS|
|*Tuesday, May 25||at San Jose, 9:00 p.m.||VERSUS, TSN, RDS|
|*Thursday, May 27||at Chicago, 8:00 p.m.||VERSUS, TSN, RDS|
|*Saturday, May 29||at San Jose, 8:00 p.m.||VERSUS, TSN, RDS|
– * denotes if necessary
– All Times are Eastern Daylight Time