28 teams look to the offseason, while the remaining four keep going to OT
We're into the Conference Finals, so first, here's your series update:
- Vegas Golden Knights–Dallas Stars (VGK leads 2–0): For the second-straight game, the Stars took the early lead, Vegas tied it, and then won it in OT, 3–2. Vegas didn't look ready for Sunday's matinée, but Laurent Brossoit kept his team in it, so Jonathan Marchessault could tie it up with fewer than three minutes left. And the Chandler Stephenson, who'd taken two undisciplined penalties during the game, played OT hero, tucking the puck past Jake Oettinger. Dallas will look to get their first win on Tuesday at home.
- Carolina Hurricanes–Florida Panthers (FLA leads 2–0): This series mercifully only needed one OT on Saturday. Matthew Tkachuk played OT hero again, as the Cats won 2–1. Somehow, Sergei Bobrovsky turned back the clock again, making 37 saves in the winning effort. Carolina will look to get their first win tonight, but will be in tough on the road.
Now that we're into 28 teams' offseasons, there's lots to be said about each of them too, and how they will definitely, probably make moves, or not. Oh, and we're nearing the end of the Sens ownership process:
- The Sens' ownership saga has been topsy-turvy, but Ian Mendes has you covered with a full timeline.
- It also came out on Friday that Canadian Olympic legend Donovan Bailey has joined the Neko Sparks bid.
- Comedian (or former comedian, if you ask for my opinion of his latest specials) Russell Peters has also joined the Neko Sparks bid.
- The process is down to 'just a couple groups', which, depending on who you ask, means 2, 3, or all 4 groups are still in it.
- The biggest non-Sens news is coming out of Toronto, where Kyle Dubas isn't back and Jason Spezza has announced his resignation. Remember, no soap operas, only hockey.
- Friends of the blog Pension Plan Puppets share their uncertain thoughts on this ordeal.
- Dubas was planning to take the season off if he wasn't back with Toronto, but Pittsburgh's still going to push to change his mind.
- The Jets will probably make changes, given six noteworthy players will be UFAs at the end of next season.
- The Islanders, meanwhile, aren't expecting big changes to a team that should only be better with a full season to adapt to Bo Horvat in the lineup.
- Craig Conroy (who was nearly a former Senator) will be the new GM of the Flames.
- A fantastic in-depth look into Larry Kwong, the first NHL player of Asian descent.
- Logan Cooley won't turn pro yet. I wonder how much the Coyotes' uncertainty in location encouraged him to return for his sophomore college year.
- A fun Athletic piece about the behind-the-scenes work for the Stanley Cup Finals, which includes scouting home arenas for teams that will lose this round.
- I love trade trees, so let's end with a curiosity. With Oscar Klefbom's injury-plagued contract running out, the Mark Messier trade tree is officially over for the Oilers.