Monday, May 18, 2009

Kerrzy’s Notebook: Playoff recap, Day 32

After day 32 of the Stanley Cup playoffs, both conference finals are underway and both home teams have had success.

Here’s the recap:

(Penguins 3, Hurricanes 2) 

-The Carolina Hurricanes probably did a little better than they thought they would in game one of the Eastern final.

In the first game of their round one and round two series, the ‘Canes fell 4-1...so a 3-2 loss ain’t so bad!

Just like in game seven against Washington, Marc-Andre Fleury made a few big saves early on and the Penguins wound up with the first goal(s).

In this particular case, it was a Miro Satan holding penalty that got Carolina buzzing while on the power-play. As soon as he hopped out of the box though, Satan hopped onto the end of an errant pass and masterfully deked out Cam Ward for the game’s first goal.

Not to be outdone, Evgeni Malkin scored 1:24 later after some sustained pressure by the Pens (and a few big saves by Ward).

The ‘Canes kept it close though and Eric Staal even had a golden opportunity in the last minute to tie the game at three each, but a hard pass bounced right off his stick and into the crease where it was gobbled up by Fleury.

I don’t think the “Cardiac Canes” are too concerned about going down by a game to start the series…they’ve been there before. As for Pittsburgh, they’re playing strong, disciplined hockey.

Game two should be a good one!

Earlier this weekend:

(Red Wings 5, Blackhawks 2)

-In hockey, role players are never more important than they are come playoff time.

So, when you get two goals from Dan Cleary and Mikael Samuelsson pots the game-winner, you know that your role guys are stepping up.

The Blackhawks got some contribution from their role players as well with Adam Burish opening the scoring, but they were just outplayed. The stat that stands out the most is that Chicago forward Patrick Kane, who had three goals and an assist in the previous game, was held without a shot.

Johan Franzen added to his impressive playoff stats of late, scoring for the 22nd time in his last 28 postseason games. And here’s a funny stat – four of Henrik Zetterberg’s seven goals in these playoffs have come without a goalie between the pipes!

Speaking of goalies, I’ll leave you with this: Chris Osgood picked up his 68th career playoff win on Sunday, which ties him with Andy Moog for ninth on the all-time list.

Tonight:

*Chicago @ Detroit – 5:30pm (Series: 1-0 DET)

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