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EDMONTON, Alberta – Joe Pavelski and Corey Perry don’t want to leave the bubble just yet.
Kevin Shattenkirk scored in overtime on a questionable power play, Brayden Point had two goals and the Tampa Bay Lightning beat the Dallas Stars 5-4 to take a 3-1 series lead in the Stanley Cup Final.
The Dallas Stars, Vegas Golden Knights, New York Islanders and Tampa Bay Lightning all have several players who weren’t on their playoff rosters last year – when none of these teams played this deep into the postseason.
Rest is beating rust so far in the NHL playoffs.
The puck has dropped in two Canadian cities to usher in the return of the NHL after a hiatus of more than four months.
Patrick Maroon will be hailed as a hometown hero in St. Louis for signing with the Blues and helping them win their first championship. What is most important to him was the chance to be around 10-year-old son Anthony and celebrate with him. The Maroons on Saturday will get the chance to ride in the first Blues championship parade. It will be the culmination of Maroon’s gamble on himself to take less money and a one-year deal to be around his family.
Boston Bruins captain Zdeno Chara says he broke his jaw in multiple places and played the last three games of the Stanley Cup Final with “two plates, some wires and screws” holding it together. Chara confirmed the extent of the injury two days after the Bruins lost in Game 7 of the championship series to the St. Louis Blues.
After back-to-back wins by the Red Sox and the Patriots, the never-satisfied fans in Boston coveted a chance to sweep the major sports prizes. But the Celtics didn’t cooperate, and the Bruins fell one game short of winning the city’s 13th title since 2002. St. Louis won Game 7 of the Stanley Cup final to take the NHL championship.
Jay Bouwmeester put 764 games on his resume before finally his first taste of the playoffs. It was a record for active players when he finally got the opportunity in 2013. Bouwmeester has since racked up 75 playoff games. He was the first player St. Louis Blues captain Alex Pietrangelo handed the Stanley Cup to as sign of respect for the 35-year-old veteran . It was also a sign of appreciation for his long road to his first NHL championship.
At age 100, Marge Kirchhoefer is among the oldest St. Louis Blues fans. Now that they are Stanley Cup champions, she knows exactly how she will celebrate. She plans to drink champagne. There is a sense of celebration and relief across St. Louis, which has had champions in baseball and football. Now fans have their first NHL championship, too.
Blues goaltender Jordan Binnington has been so good he might never have to pay for another meal in St. Louis. He was drafted in the third round, shuffled to the bottom of the pile of the Blues’ goalie depth chart and even farmed out to Boston’s top minor league affiliate. The 25-year-old rookie led the Blues from dead last in the NHL to the first title in franchise history. He was the perfect backstop for the bruising Blues.
The Boston Bruins found out what San Jose Sharks, Dallas Stars and Winnipeg Jets learned the hard way. Don’t let the St. Louis Blues take a lead.
The Boston Bruins will look back on three minutes all summer. The Bruins got off to a fast start in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final against St. Louis. Excellent scoring chances were turned aside by St. Louis goalie Jordan Binnington. And then in a matter of three minutes late in the first period, the Blues scored twice. They took a 2-0 lead into the first intermission and cruised to a 4-1 win to celebrate their first championship.
Ryan O’Reilly wanted to take the Stanley Cup to his 99-year-old grandmother who often emails him congratulatory messages. He could now get that chance after leading the Blues to their first title in franchise history. O’Reilly set a St. Louis playoff record with 23 points and became the first player since Wayne Gretzky to score in four consecutive Cup Final games. He was also named playoff MVP.
Rookie Jordan Binnington stopped 32 shots to lead St. Louis to a 4-1 victory over the Boston Bruins in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final and their first NHL championship. Conn Smythe Trophy winner Ryan O’Reilly scored for the fourth straight game for the Blues.
Bruins captain Zdeno Chara has a chance to skate off with the Stanley Cup for the second time on Wednesday night, when Boston plays the St. Louis Blues in Game 7 of the NHL championship series. Chara was knocked out of Game 4 when he took a deflected puck off his face, and his quick return has inspired his teammates and drawn the admiration of the Boston fans. The Bruins last won the Cup in 2011. St. Louis has never won it.
From January to March, the St. Louis Blues didn’t play more than one consecutive home game at a time. It was a lot like a 70-day road trip.
The St. Louis Blues and Boston Bruins are so tight that Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final, like so many before in the playoffs, is absolutely in danger of hinging on officiating. Changes are very likely coming to video review and how the NHL handles these situations moving forward, but none of that will affect the Blues and Bruins on Sunday night when the Stanley Cup could get wheeled onto the ice for a celebration or put on a plane back to Boston for a potential deciding Game 7.
Due to suspensions and injuries, the St. Louis Blues will have their sixth different lineup combination in six games during the Stanley Cup Final. Instead of interrupting continuity, the Blues’ game of musical jerseys of players in and out of the lineup has given them a variety of looks for the Bruins to contend with and contributed to St. Louis being on the verge of winning the Stanley Cup.
Todd Angilly’s work isn’t done after he sings the national anthem before the Stanley Cup Final games in Boston. The 40-year-old singer then hustles up to a suite-level bar to serve drinks for the rest of the game. Angilly says the adrenaline of the Bruins’ playoff run helps him make it through the busy days. He’ll be singing “The Star-Spangled Banner” again before the Bruins play the St. Louis Blues in Game 5 on Thursday night.