Okay...so I was hoping to blog every day of the playoffs, but I hit my first snag this weekend when I was without internet access for a whole three days.
We'll start out with Monday night's action (and there's a recap of all the games that happened from Friday to Sunday down below...so technically, I didn't miss anything!)
(Boston 4, Montreal 2)
-The Habs opened the scoring, their first lead of the series, but the Bruins capitalized on a lucky bounce to tie it and wouldn't fall behind again in a 4-2 win. Former Canadien Michael Ryder potted the game-winner late in the second period (his fourth point this series) and the Bruins didn't skip a beat, taking a 3-0 series lead. The Bruins look like the real deal, I can't wait to see them take on a team like Pittsburgh. They can score, they can rough it up with the best of them and they've got strong goaltending. In fact, I really enjoy watching them play and I think a Boston/Philadelphia series would be crazy!
(Washington 4, NY Rangers 0)
-Quite an interesting series brewing between the Caps and the Rangers -- for one, home ice seems to be a disadvantage as the home team hasn't won through three games. A lot of people thought goaltending would be the downfall of the Washington Capitals but after Bruce Boudreau replaced Jose Theodore with rookie Simeon Varlamov, goaltending might be what keeps them alive! Varlamov earned his first career playoff shutout in his second career playoff game, and has let just one goal past him in 120 minutes. Will Sean Avery be the Rangers achilles' heel? He took four minor penalties and a punch to the head of Varlamov landed him a ten minute misconduct (and possible suspension?). What is it with Avery and goalies?
(Calgary 4, Chicago 2)
-The Calgary Flames built up a lead, and DIDN'T LOSE! That's a big first for the Flames who led by one with six minutes to go in game one, lost in overtime, and then blew a 2-0 lead in game two, losing 3-2. This one got chippy at the end, too. It looked more like the Pens/Flyers or the Bruins/Habs...things got very rough in the final few minutes. I love that about playoff hockey. Penalty minutes were 40-34 in favor of the Hawks in the third period, after the two teams combined for 12 minutes through the first 40! Game four will be a dandy!
Pittsburgh @ Philadelphia - 5pm (Series: 2-1 PIT)
Detroit @ Columbus - 5pm (Series: 2-0 DET)
NJ @ Carolina - 530pm (Series: 2-1 NJ)
Vancouver @ St. Louis - 6pm (Series: 3-0 VAN)
SJ @ Anaheim - 830pm (Series: 2-0 ANA)
Here's a quick of a summary of how things went during my online absence:
-Bill Guerin scored the overtime winner as Pittsburgh went up by a pair of games over the Philadelphia Flyers, but on Sunday Philly got revenge in the form of a 6-3 win.
-Tim Gleason's goal in the extra frame gave Carolina a 2-1 win over New Jersey and tied their best-of-seven series at one each; but on Sunday night, Travis Zajac scored in OT to put the Devils up by a game.
-The St. Louis Blues have been quite a disappointing addition to this year's postseason -- a 3-0 loss to Vancouver on Friday combined with a 3-2 loss at home on Sunday leave them facing elimination heading into game four.
-On Saturday, the Rangers beat the Caps 1-0 in a tight game that saw goalie Simeon Varlamov make his postseason debut. Varlamov managed to cut the Rangers goal scoring by three, but New York came out of it with a pair of away wins, and a 2-0 series lead.
-Also on Saturday, Detroit Red Wings goalie Chris Osgood earned his 14th career playoff shutout in a 4-0 win over the Columbus Blue Jackets, moving him into fifth on the all-time list. The Red Wings looked great, going up 2-0 as the series shifts to Ohio.
-The Boston Bruins took it to the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday, beating them 5-1 and chasing Carey Price from the crease after two periods. They took a 2-0 series lead into Montreal for Monday night's game, but found out they'd be playing without forward Milan Lucic who was suspended for one game for an incident near the end of Saturday's win.
-Calgary blew a 2-0 first period lead, losing 3-2 to the Chicago Blackhawks in the city of wind. Jonathan Toews potted the game winner, his second of the night as the 'Hawks won their second game of the series.
-And the Anaheim Ducks look more and more like they're going to upset the San Jose Sharks after a 3-2 win on Sunday -- the second team to win both road games to start a series (the Rangers being the other). Keep in mind, San Jose only lost FIVE regulation games this season at the Shark Tank.