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Editorial: the Rest of the First Round Picks

April 15th, 2014 at 10:36 PM
By Frank Vajcner

On the eve of the NHL's second season, the excitement builds for close games, late nights, crazy rituals, and the #bucciovertimechallenge.

I also present to you the rest of my first round picks.

Without further ado…

Eastern Conference:

Boston Bruins vs Detroit Red Wings

Read preview here

Prediction: Bruins in 7

Pittsburgh Penguins vs Columbus Blue Jackets

My take: The Jackets are no pushover with young scorers in Ryan Johansen and Boone Jenner, but unless the Penguins Marc-Andre Fleury plays like a dumpster fire again (which if he does, it could be adios from Pittsburgh), the Penguins should survive and advance.

Prediction: Penguins in 6

Tampa Bay Lightning vs Montreal Canadiens

My take: Will the real Carey Price please stand up? Montreal's netminder was awful in last year's playoff loss to Ottawa. Can he recapture his Olympic magic against an explosive Lightning offense? Everyone knows about Steven Stamkos, but rookies Tyler Johnson and Ondrej Palat have made waves in Tampa.

Prediction: Lightning in 6

New York Rangers vs. Philadelphia Flyers

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Detroit Red Wings Vs. Boston Bruins: First Round Playoff Preview.

April 15th, 2014 at 9:46 PM
By Frank Vajcner

The Stanley Cup Playoffs are here at last.

This year is different for the Detroit Red Wings as they will mark their first season being in the Eastern Conference side of the bracket.

This year's opponent is a familiar foe, but not when it comes to playoffs.

The Boston Bruins have not faced the Wings in postseason play since 1957.

An Original Six matchup in the first round. Let's take a look at how this could play out.


Game 1 at Boston, Friday, 7:30 p.m., NBC Sports Network

Game 2 at Boston, April 20, 3 p.m., NBC

Game 3 at Detroit, April 22, 7:30 p.m., NBC Sports Network

Game 4 at Detroit, April 24, 8 p.m., NBC Sports Network

*Game 5 at Boston, April 26, 3 p.m, NBC

*Game 6 at Detroit, April 28, time TBD, TV TBD

*Game 7 at Boston, April 30, time TBD, TV TBD

*if necessary



  • David Legwand* (51 points–14 goals, 37 assists)
  • Gustav Nyquist (48 points–28 goals, 20 assists)
  • Daniel Alfredsson (49 points–18 goals, 31 assists)
  • Niklas Kronwall (49 points–8 goals, 41 assists)
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Detroit Red Wings Blank St. Louis Blues in Regular Season Finale

April 14th, 2014 at 2:53 PM
By Frank Vajcner

The Red Wings sent a message on Sunday in St. Louis.

They are not a team to be taken lightly in the playoffs.

Despite resting regulars Johan Franzen, Daniel Alfredsson, Niklas Kronwall, Danny DeKeyser, and Jimmy Howard, they still held the Blues to a goose egg in a 3-0 win.

Justin Abdelkader scored two goals, and Petr Mrazek picked up his second career shutout by stopping all 23 shots.

"[The Blues] didn't have their team and we didn't have chunks of our team too, so I don't know if you can evaluate much about the game, but it's always nice to win it," Red Wings coach Mike Babcock said.

The Wings will face the Boston Bruins in the first round of the playoffs.

Abdelkader's first goal of the game came after he deflected a shot from Brian Lashoff past Ryan Miller at 13:30 of the first. He scored again in the third off of a give and go from Pavel Datsyuk at 12:43 of the third. Both goals helped him tie his career-high of ten in a season, as well as set a career high in points with 28.

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Point Taken: Detroit Red Wings Clinch Playoff Spot for 23rd Straight Season Despite Shootout Loss

April 10th, 2014 at 5:44 PM
By Frank Vajcner

Riley Sheahan probably scored the biggest goal of his young NHL career.

It wasn't a goal that won a game or a playoff series, but the rookie may have etched his place into Red Wings history with said goal.

With the Red Wings trailing the Pittsburgh Penguins 3-2 late in the third period, they had an offensive zone faceoff with 1:44 remaining. Sidney Crosby chipped the puck toward the blue line to clear the zone.

The puck was held in by Brendan Smith. It eventually found its way back to Niklas Kronwall, who dished to Sheahan.

Sheahan then ripped a slapshot that hit Marc-Andre Fleury's glove and fluttered behind him into the net to tie the game with 1:15 left. It would stay that way through the end of regulation, which gave the Red Wings the one point needed to clinch a playoff spot for the 23rd consecutive season.

"It was a pretty good feeling and good to get that point to give us a chance in the playoffs," Sheahan said of his seventh goal of the season. "It's unbelievable to help the team any way we can. There's all this talk about the young guys being helpful here but you have to give credit to the older guys for showing us the ropes and playing with leadership, so it's been a lot of fun."

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Detroit Red Wings at Pittsburgh Penguins: Game Preview

April 9th, 2014 at 5:28 PM
By Frank Vajcner

How about this for a playoff preview?

If the season ended today, the Red Wings and Penguins would play each other in the first round.

Both teams met in the 2008 and 2009 Stanley Cup Finals.

It may not be for the Cup this time, but it's still a good matchup

We'll talk playoffs later.

What: Red Wings at Penguins

When: 8 p.m. tonight

Where: CONSOL Energy Center, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

TV: NBC Sports Network, TSN2

Records: The Wings are 38-27-14; the Penguins are 50-24-5

Season Series: Tied 1-1

Last Meeting: This happened.

Projected Lineups

Red Wings:


Johan Franzen – Pavel Datsyuk – Justin Abdelkader

Gustav Nyquist – Riley Sheahan – Tomas Tatar

Daniel Alfredsson – Darren Helm – Tomas Jurco

Drew Miller – Luke Glendening – David Legwand


Niklas Kronwall – Brendan Smith

Kyle Quincey – Danny DeKeyser

Jakub Kindl – Brian Lashoff


Jonas Gustavsson (starter)

Jimmy Howard



Chris Kunitz – Sidney Crosby-Beau Bennett

Brian Gibbons – Jussi Jokinen- James Neal

Tanner Glass – Brandon Sutter-Lee Stempniak

Taylor Pyatt – Craig Adams – Adam Payerl


Rob Scuderi – Kris Letang

Brooks Orpik – Paul Martin

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