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The good, bad and what's next for Panthers after another early ending to historic season

Sports / Hockey /

MIAMI — A few days had passed since the Florida Panthers’ record-setting season ended with a stunning sweep at the hands of the rival Tampa Bay Lightning and the Panthers couldn’t believe it.

“I woke up this morning thinking we were playing,” interim coach Andrew Brunette said Wednesday after arriving at FLA Live Arena on the day ...Read more

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Luke DeCock: By inches or by yards, Hurricanes find a way to get an edge on Rangers in Game 5

Sports / Hockey /

RALEIGH, N.C. — Sometimes, it truly is a game of inches. As it was when Sebastian Aho hit the crossbar. And Jesper Fast hit the post. And Aho hit the right post while standing alone in acres of open ice.

Then, once in a while, it’s a game of yards. Which is how far offsides Andrew Copp was when he scored what, momentarily, was the go-ahead ...Read more

Bruce Bennett/Getty Images North America/TNS

Hurricanes stifle Rangers in Game 5 win, can close out playoff series on Saturday

Sports / Hockey /

RALEIGH, N.C. — The Carolina Hurricanes were playing at home in the playoffs.

The Canes scored a power-play goal and a short-handed goal.

The Canes also won a coach’s challenge, disallowing a New York Rangers goal.

That all added up to a 3-1 victory in Game 5 of the second-round playoff series at PNC Arena, keeping the Hurricanes ...Read more

Dirk Shadd/Tampa Bay Times/TNS

Lightning look to play long enough to get Brayden Point back

Sports / Hockey /

TAMPA, Fla. — Steven Stamkos knows what it’s like having to watch while teammates chase greatness.

“The worst feeling as an athlete is not being able to perform, especially at this time of the year,” said Stamkos, who missed all but 2 minutes, 47 seconds of the Lightning’s 2020 run to the first of back-to-back Stanley Cup ...Read more

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Avalanche still stuck in second round after Game 5 collapse. Will the Game 7 demons emerge if Colorado can't close out the Blues on Friday?

Sports / Hockey /

In trying to put a cosmic Game 5 collapse behind them, the Avalanche has at least one thing going for it:

Heading into a potential close-out Game 6 against the St. Louis Blues at The Enterprise Center on Friday night, the Avs are a perfect 4-0 on the road this postseason.

Of course, none of those wins were preceded by a historic meltdown with ...Read more

Benjamin Hochman: 'That was hard on the heart.' Blues persevere in epic Game 5 overtime win.

Sports / Hockey /

DENVER — Inside a quiet elevator in a silenced arena, the doors opened to reveal the biggest Blues fan there is.

Tom Stillman, hockey-loving chairman of the Blues, stepped into a Ball Arena elevator to go down to ice level, where it had just happened.

It, of course, being the impossible.

“That was hard on the heart,” Stillman said. “...Read more

Dirk Shadd/Tampa Bay Times/TNS

Lightning's Corey Perry finds success in different role on power play

Sports / Hockey /

TAMPA, Fla. — The Lightning’s power play has been known as a threat throughout the NHL for years.

It’s hard to find a weakness on Tampa Bay’s top man-advantage unit, with Victor Hedman at the point, Steven Stamkos in the left circle, Nikita Kucherov in the right, a rotation of players around the net and Brayden Point in the slot.

So, ...Read more

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Mike Sielski: Claude Giroux's star-crossed career adds another missed Stanley Cup chapter

Sports / Hockey /

PHILADELPHIA — Claude Giroux had begun to acknowledge the inevitability of his situation years ago. It was the summer of 2018, just before the Flyers’ first day of training camp. Dave Hakstol had helped him revitalize his career the season before, moving him from center to left wing. With the position change, Giroux had gone from 58 points ...Read more

Blues live on -- Bozak's OT goal sends series back to St. Louis

Sports / Hockey /

DENVER — On eight occasions this season, the Blues put together winning streaks of three games or more. They won five in a row to start the season and won nine straight in April.

Well, they need one more three-game streak to keep their season alive, and got a start in that direction Wednesday with a 5-4 overtime victory over the Colorado ...Read more

Yzerman has intriguing list of candidates for Red Wings coaching search

Sports / Hockey /

DETROIT — Red Wings general manager Steve Yzerman has choices, that's for sure.

In his search for a head coach to replace Jeff Blashill, Yzerman has a long, long list of available candidates. Be it from the NHL, the minor leagues, the NCAA or Europe.

There are plenty of available candidates — many of them with impressive, winning resumes, ...Read more

Blues coach Craig Berube says threats, slurs to Avalanche forward Nazem Kadri are 'in no way acceptable'

Sports / Hockey /

DENVER – Before he answered any hockey questions Wednesday following the Blues’ morning skate, coach Craig Berube wanted to set the record straight on his “no-comment” involving threats and racial slurs made against Colorado forward Nazem Kadri.

“I’m not on social media,” Berube said. “I was aware of a threat made to Nazem. Not ...Read more

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Dom Amore: Ex-Whaler Ray Ferraro a voice to be reckoned with as lends his analysis to NHL playoff broadcasts

Sports / Hockey /

HARTFORD, Conn. — A new cluster of fans is tuning in to playoff hockey with its exciting games and series and star players unfolding on ESPN, TNT and ABC. Ratings are high, up 15% from the pre-pandemic playoffs of 2019, setting records during the first round.

All this bodes well for the NHL’s new television arrangement, and in the middle of...Read more

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Sean Keeler: Avalanche center Nazem Kadri got last laugh on St. Louis Blues haters. But if NHL doesn't suspend David Perron, somebody's going to get hurt.

Sports / Hockey /

The NHL is awfully quick to throw the book at Nazem Kadri. But where the heck are they when some idiot throws an elbow at him?

Or a water bottle? Or something worse?

David Perron, Blues forward by day and tactless goon by night, should be suspended. Now. If not for Game 5 of Avs-Blues on Wednesday night at Ball Arena, when Colorado likely ...Read more

Bruce Bennett/Getty Images North America/TNS

Hurricanes' road woes continue in 4-1 loss to Rangers

Sports / Hockey /

NEW YORK — Try as they might, the Carolina Hurricanes can’t win a road game in the playoffs.

The Canes have tried — five times. All have ended in losses.

Unbeaten at home in the playoffs, the Canes fell again outside of PNC Arena, taking a 4-1 beating from the New York Rangers on Tuesday in Game 4 of their second-round Stanley Cup ...Read more

Dirk Shadd/Tampa Bay Times/TNS

John Romano: Little by little, this Lightning team will steal your heart

Sports / Hockey /

TAMPA, Fla. — All these years later, how do they do it?

Not just the winning. That’s explained easily enough with a stat here and an Andrei Vasilevskiy there.

No, after all the records, awards, championships, farewells, arrivals, injuries, slumps, salary caps, grudges and community heroes, how do they pull off the most remarkable feat in ...Read more

Douglas R. Clifford/Tampa Bay Times/TNS

Greg Cote: No excuse or consolation: Panthers swept out of playoffs in 2-0 loss a crushing way to end

Sports / Hockey /

MIAMI — Where do you look for belief when there doesn’t seem to be any? How do you claim confidence when the words feel hollow even as they leave your lips? Where do you find resilience when the world is laughing at your chances?

When you know even your most loyal fans have likely resigned themselves to reality, not allowing hope in, so ...Read more

Benjamin Hochman: Are the Blues a deep team? No, they're in too deep.

Sports / Hockey /

Biggest game of the series, biggest game of the year, biggest game since 2019, and this mighty Blues offense disappeared in plain sight.

Nine 20-goal scorers. We got early stages of carpel tunnel by furiously typing praise about these guys. Yet in Game 4 of the Blues-Avalanche series, Jordan Kyrou didn’t get off a shot. Neither did Robert ...Read more

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Nazem Kadri gets hat track in Avs' 6-3 victory over Blues in Game 4

Sports / Hockey /

ST. LOUIS — Nazem Kadri scored a goal on Monday night in Game 4 — the second of four consecutive for the Avalanche and the first of three for him in the game — and the St. Louis Blues couldn’t stand it.

The hosts were being dominated by Colorado at Enterprise Center and Kadri’s first of two goals in a stretch of 3:30 caused two St. ...Read more

St. Louis police called to investigate threats against Avalanche's Nazem Kadri

Sports / Hockey /

ST. LOUIS — Local police were called to investigate threats against the Colorado Avalanche's Nazem Kadri after a contentious Game 3 at the Enterprise Center, an Avalanche spokesman said Sunday.

Kadri drew the ire of St. Louis fans Saturday when he caused a collision that injured Blues goalie Jordan Binnington less than seven minutes into ...Read more

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Hurricanes playoff road woes continue as Rangers power past Carolina in Game 3 at MSG

Sports / Hockey /

NEW YORK — A five-word message was waiting Sunday for the Carolina Hurricanes at Madison Square Garden: “No Quit in New York.”

It was on white rally towels and T-shirts left in the seats and shown on the massive scoreboard. And displayed on the ice by the New York Rangers.

In another tight, low-scoring game that again featured the two ...Read more