Devils are tough, Kings take 3-0 lead and Hossa Update

4 May

Ilya Kovalchuk had a big game last night and New Jersey took a 2-1 series lead of the Flyers last night.  A big goal and a sweet assist on the game winner in overtime.  Not many players in the league can make that play.

The Devils are a tough team.  They’re not going away.

A great piece on NHL tonight by former goalie Kevin Weekes who did a fantastic job explaining the split second decision process on making a second save.  He wasn’t calling out Byrzgalov but he showed how he could have made that save.  Check it out if you can.

Great quote from Doc Emrick during the triple OT game on Wednesday.  “playing for a ring that’s too big and a trophy you can’t keep”.

Mike Richards had a huge game pulling a Gordie Howe hat trick.  His goal was a power play that turned out to be the game winner.  He assisted on the 4th goal that put the game away and also had a fight.  What a gamer.

The Kings are for real.  They are a freight train rolling through the playoffs right now.  They took out the # 1 seed and are now 1 game away from eliminating the # 2 seed.  They barely got into the playoffs as the # 8 seed.  I didn’t pick the Kings in either round of my post season picks.  Shows what I know.

Remember this team didn’t start the season well.  They fired their coach in December and Darryl Sutter was brought in to right the ship.  He certainly got their attention.  This team plays like a Sutter team.  He was head coach for the Blackhawks after they fired Mike Keenan.  Same style of play.  It sure seems to be working.

”They’re full marks,” St. Louis coach Ken Hitchcock said. ”They’re on top of their game, and they have been for a while now.”

”When you have success, you gain confidence, and we’ve been playing the same system and the same style for a while now,” Richards said. ”We’re maybe a little surprised it’s going like this, but we knew going into every game we have a chance to win.”

Looks like it’s LA’s series to lose.

Exciting game tonight.  Let’s go Preds!

HOSSA Update.

Marion Hossa is still recovering.  ESPN reports:

“I’m feeling better but still not feeling myself, so it’s going to take some time,” Hossa said in a conference call with reporters from Slovakia on Thursday. “The good thing is, step by step, (I’m) getting a little bit better, so that’s a good sign.”

Hossa said Torres reached out to him “about a week” after the hit.

“It was nice he contacted me, but on the (other hand) I told him, ‘I know you play that way, but the one thing that upset me (was) the jump; if you wouldn’t jump, I wouldn’t get hit in the head and you wouldn’t have 25 games.’ The phone conversation was pretty quick,” Hossa explained.

Hossa had just played the puck in the neutral zone when Torres left his skates, knocking the Hawks’ star out.

“I don’t remember much,” Hossa said. “I remember a few seconds seeing (Hawks doctor) Dr. Terry. Just remember a little bit in the ambulance and I woke up in the hospital.”

Hossa was released that night. He also bruised his elbow when he hit the ground. He’s hopeful he’ll be fully recovered by training camp, which starts in September.

“I’m slowly getting better,” Hossa said. “Slowly going for walks. Training camp is still far away. I’m in contact with the team. I believe I’ll be ready.”

Hossa saw the replay of the hit several days later and again expressed his displeasure with Torres leaving his feet to deliver the blow.

“I was surprised there was no penalty,” he said. “I’ve been hit so many times but never this hard obviously … I don’t mind getting hit; one thing upset me. The jump. That’s basically how he hit my head.”

Hossa said if he has had any concussions previously, they were mild.

“This is biggest one for sure,” he stated. “Not fun, especially the first few days in a dark room.”

Hossa wasn’t sure how this would affect his offseason training schedule. First, he just wants to get better.

“It all depends,” he said. “Definitely going to have a month and not do anything and (then) slowly do little things.”

At this point, Hossa wants to get better and move on.

“You don’t want to see this stuff in hockey,” he said. “I was angry but what can you do. It’s behind us now. I try to focus on my rehab and go from there.”

In international news:

The United States has defeated France 7-2 in the first game of the International Ice Hockey World Championships in Helsinki.

TTS

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