Game SevenMaxime Talbot – 2 Goals
Jonathan Ericsson – Goal
Evgeni Malkin – Assist
Chris Kunitz – Assist
Rob Scuderi – Assist
Nicklas Lidstrom – Assist
Jiri Hudler – Assist
Marc-Andre Fleury – W, 23 of 24 Saves
Chris Osgood – 16 of 18 Saves


Game Six

Tyler Kennedy – Goal, Assist
Jordan Staal – Goal
Kris Draper – Goal
Rob Scuderi – Assist
Maxime Talbot - Assist
Ruslan Fedotenko – Assist
Jonathan Ericsson – Assist
Nicklas Lidstrom – Assist
Marc-Andre Fleury – W, 25 of 26 Saves
Chris Osgood – 29 of 31 Saves


Game Four

Sidney Crosby – Goal, Assist
Evgeni Malkin – Goal, Assist
Jordan Staal – Goal, Assist
Darren Helm – Goal
Brad Stuart – Goal
Tyler Kennedy – Goal
Kris Letang – Assist
Henrik Zetterberg – Assist
Brian Rafalski – Assist
Mark Eaton – Assist
Maxime Talbot – Assist
Chris Kunitz – Assist
Marc-Andre Fleury – W, 37 of 39 Saves


Game Three

Maxime Talbot – 2 Goals
Evgeni Malkin- 3 Assists
Henrik Zetterberg – Goal, Assist
Johan Franzen – Goal, Assist
Sergei Gonchar  – Goal, Assist
Kris Letang – Goal, Assist
Ville Leino – Assist
Niklas Kronwall – Assist
Sidney Crosby – Assist
Ruslan Fedotenko  – Assist
Marc-Andre Fleury – W, 27 of 29 Saves


Game Two

Tomas Holmstrom – 2 Assists
Jonathan Ericsson – Goal
Valtteri Filppula - Goal
Justin Abdelkader – Goal
Evgeni Malkin - Goal
Kris Letang – Assist
Bill Guerin – Assist
Jiri Hudler - Assist
Darren Helm - Assist
Marian Hossa – Assist
Chris Osgood – W, 31 of 32 Saves


Game One

Brad Stuart – Goal
Johan Franzen – Goal
Justin Abdelkader – Goal
Ruslan Fedotenko – Goal
Evgeni Malkin – Goal
Ville Leino – Assist
Brian Rafalski- Assist
Henrik Zetterberg – Assist
Chris Osgood – W, 31 of 32 Saves
Marc-Andre Fleury – 27 of 30 Saves

The Lakers had no answer for Carlos Boozer (27 points, 20 rebounds) in Game 3 as the Jazz made the series 2 Games to 1.  The Knicks landed Mike D’Antoni.  Dallas opted for Rick Carlisle. Detroit won without Chauncey Billups (hamstring) to take a 3-1 series lead.  Rip’s 32 points led the way.  Cleveland beat Boston in Game 3.  The C’s still have a 2-1 lead.  Deron Williams had 29 points and 14 assists as Utah evened the series at 2 vs. the Lakers.  Tim Duncan had 22 points and 15 boards as San Antonio evened up with the Hornets.  KG, Kobe, Bruce Bowen, Marcus Camby, and Tim Duncan were named First Team NBA All-Defensive Team.  Cleveland took Game 4 to even the series with Boston.  The C’s just can’t win on the road.  Jameer Nelson looked stupid when the Pistons beat Orlando without Chauncey Billups to advance to the Eastern Conference Finals.  Robert Horry set the record for most playoff games.  Kevin Durant, Al Horford, Luis Scola, Al Thornton, and Jeff Green were named to the All-NBA Rookie Team.  New Orleans blasted the Spurs behind David West’s 38 points and 14 rebounds.  Danny Ainge was named Executive of the Year.  I’m shocked Kevin McHale didn’t win.  KG & Pierce combined for 55 points as the Celtics dumped the Cavs (at home of course) despite a good shooting game from LeBron finally.  The Lakers did their thing at home to take a 3-2 series lead.  The Spurs drilled the Hornets in Game 6 to even their series.

Joel Quenneville  won’t be returning as the Avs Coach next year.  Evgeni Malkin had tow goals and an assist as Pittsburgh took Game 1 vs. Philadelphia 4-2.  Johan Franzen didn’t play, but Detroit won anyway for a 2-0 series lead.  Make it 2-0 for the Penguins as well as they took out the Flyers 4-2.  The NHL decided to let Chris Osgood and Mike Ribeiro off with a fine rather than suspensions for their altercation.  San Jose fired Ron Wilson.  Pavel Datsyuk netted a hat trick as Detroit took a commanding 3-0 series lead vs. Dallas.  Boston re-signed F Chuck Kobasew.  Marian Hossa netted a couple of goals as Pittsburgh took a 3-0 series lead over Philly in the Keystone State Showdown.  Dallas avoided a sweep by beat Detroit in Game 4.  The Flyers also avoided a sweep by taking out the Penguins.

Friday:  Richie Sexson was suspended six games for charging the mound.  Jimmy Rollins returned from the DL.  San Diego cut Jim Edmonds.  James Shields threw a one-hitter.  Saturday:  Hanley Ramirez signed a six-year, $70 million deal.  Vernon Wells will be out six to eight weeks with a broken wrist.  Ben Sheets became Milwaukee’s career strikeout leader.  Grady Sizemore went yard twice.  Dan Uggla hit a Grand Slam.  Jeff Keppinger collected five hits.  Greg Maddux finally earned win #350.  Sunday:  Eric Gagne is out as a closer.  His stuff isn’t as nasty without the “stuff”.  Dan Uggla, Ryan Braun, and Craig Monroe each hit a pair of HRs.  Monday:  Asdrubal Cabrera turned an unassisted triple-play.  Fausto Carmona fired a Complete Game Shutout.  Cliff Lee pitched 9 scoreless Innings to lower his ERA to 0.67.  Tuesday:  Jeff Keppinger broke his knee cap.  Eric Gagne earned a Save.  Randy Johnson earned Win #287.  Wednesday:  Clay Buchholz and Ryan Doumit landed on the DL.  Tampa locked up Scott Kazmir for three years at $28.5 million.  Let’s see, Carlos Silva got $48 for four years.  Well done Rays.  Well done.  Jim Edmonds signed with the Cubs.  Jay Payton, Carlos Quentin and Matt Stairs hit Grand Slams.  C.C. Sabathia threw a Complete Game Shutout.  Manny Ramirez caught a fly, high-fived a fan, and then doubled off the runner at first.  Thursday:  Cole Hamels threw a Complete Game Shutout.  Milwaukee signed Ryan Braun to a eight-year, $45 million deal.  Nice value.  Nick Johnson landed on the DL.  Brandon Webb improved to 9-0.  The Indians finally gave up a run.

Baltimore TE Quinn Sypniewski wil miss the year with a knee injury.  The Packers cut Koren Robinson.  Robbie Gould signed a five-year, $15.5 million deal with Chicago.  Seattle’s Lofa Tatupu got popped for DUI.  The Brown cut Kenny Wright.  There was plenty of Spygate talk.  I’m tired of it, but at the same time ashamed of my Patriots.

UCF CB Johnell Neal was shot in New Orleans.  Florida DL Matt Patchan was shot in the shoulder in Tampa. The ACC decided 8 conference games were enough.  Former LSU QB Ryan Perrilloux chose Jacksonville State.

There is speculation O.J. Mayo received gifts.  Shocker.  Duquesne G Kojo Mensah is testing the NBA waters.

Sergio Garcia won The Players Championship.

Tony Stewart won the NASCAR Nationwide Series at Darlington.  Kyle Busch won the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Darlington. 

Annika Sorenstam will retire after the season.  Justine Henin will do the same, only immediately.

That concludes the Tidbits. As always feel free to add any stories you liked this week in sports or discuss any of the stories I mentioned.

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Philadelphia beat Detroit to take a 2-1 series lead.  Dallas fought back (Dirk 32 points, 19 boards) to take Game 3. Before the game Josh Howard spoke of how he likes to smoke weed.  Grant Hill won the Joe Dumars Award for good sportsmanship.  Tony Parker had 41 points and 12 assists as San Antonio took a 3-0 lead over Phoenix.  When they traded for Shaq to limit Duncan, they forgot to address acquiring someone to slow Tony Parker.  Charlotte fired Sam Vincent.  Chris Bosh had 39 points & 15 rebounds, but he couldn’t keep Toronto from falling into a 3-1 hole against Orlando.  The Lakers shut down Denver to take a 3-0 series lead. Atlanta stunned the Celtics in Game 3.  They trail 2-1 in the series.  Utah took a 3-1 lead over Houston behind Mehmet Okur’s 14 points and 18 boards. Cleveland took Game 4 vs. Washington for a 3-1 series lead.  The “overrated” LeBron James had 34 points, 12 rebounds, and 7 assists.  Phoenix avoided a sweep at the hands of San Antonio.  Detroit evened things up at 2 with Philly.  New Orleans was too much for Dallas as they pushed them to the brink of elimination 3 games to 1.  Pat Riley is stepping down as Miami coach.  Erik Spoelstra will take over until the team is good enough to challenge for the title and then he’ll stab him in the back and take over.  OK, I made that last part up. but it wouldn’t be the first time.  Orlando’s Hedo Turkoglu won the NBA’s Most Improved Player.  He won the Lesters Award in the same category.  Dwight Howard produced yet another 20-20 (21 points & 21 rebounds) as Orlando sent Toronto packing in Game 5.  Joe Johnson and Josh Smith combined for 63 points as the Hawks evened their series against Boston at two.  Kobe & Co. got their brooms out as they swept Denver away.  Larry Brown will coach Charlotte next year.  I’m so tired of him.  Byron Scott won the Coach of the Year Award.  Chris Paul’s Triple-Double send Dallas packing 4-1.  San Antonio sent Shaq and Phoenix.  See what happens when you make reactionary trades?  Detroit took care of Philly to take a 3-2 series lead.  Houston stayed alive in Game 5.  They trail Utah 3-2.  Dallas canned Avery Johnson.  KG got away with shoving a ref.  Perkins and Williams got away with leaving the bench.  I was hoping Cleveland would send them packing, but Washington took Game 5.  “Overrated (but already played in an NBA Finals)” LeBron James had 34 points, 10 rebounds, and 7 assists.  Caron Butler hit the game-winner.  Boston whooped the Hawks in Game 5 to take a 3-2 series lead.  Kevin Durant was named Rookie of the Year.  Detroit blew out Philly to win the series 4 games to 2.

 
Pittsburgh beat the Rangers 5-4 to take their series opener.  Dallas won in OT to take the opener vs. San Jose.  Detroit pounded Colorado behind Johan Franzen’s hat trick for a 2-0 series lead.  Philadelphia evened things up at 1 with Montreal.  Pittsburgh’s Marc-Andre Fleury shutout the Rangers 2-0 as they Penguins took the same lead in the series.  Dallas whooped on San Jose to take a 2-0 lead.  Philadelphia’s improbable run continued as it took Game 3 and a 2-1 lead over Montreal.  Anaheim signed C Ryan Carter to a three-year deal.  Pittsburgh cruised to a 3-0 lead as Malkin netted two goals. Dallas pushed San Jose to the brink of elimination (3 games to None) with a 2-1 OT win.  Detroit did the same to Anaheim in regulation.  Sean Avery suffered a lacerated spleen and will miss the rest of the playoffs for the Rangers.  Philadelphia took a commaning 3-1 series lead over Montreal.  San Jose didn’t go down without a fight in winning Game 4.  The still trail Dallas 3-1 in the series.   Jaromir Jagr had 2 Goals and an Assist and Henrik Lundqvist recorded a shutout as the Rangers stayed alive vs. Pittsburgh.  Johan Franzen netted his second hat trick of the series as Detroit swept Colorado.
 

Roger Clemens had a rough week.  The Twins sent Liriano down to the minors.  I knew they brought him up too early.  Jason Giambi hit 2 HRs.  Justin Morneau hit a Grand Slam. Randy Johnson won his 285th career game.  Lance Berkman cracked a couple of solo shots.  Matt Kemp hit a Grand Slam.  Erik Bedard returned from the DL.  Carlos Delgado Paul Konerko, Brandon Phillips, and Nate McLouth each hit a pair of HRs.  Jorge Posada landed on the DL with a bad shoulder.  Proof that the NFL’s contract aren’t that bad…Barry Zito 0-6 with a 7.53 ERA.  Mike Mussina won his 253rd career game.  Hank Blaylock landed on the DL with a torn hamstring.  Now it’s John Smoltz to the DL.  He wants to return to the bullpen when he comes back.  Greg Maddux was denied #350 yet again.  Roy Halladay threw his fourth straight complete game.  Scott Hairston hit a pair of HRs.  A-Rod went on the DL with a strained quad.  Chad Cordero will miss a month with a shoulder tear.  Placido Polanco and Geovany Soto each hit a pair of HRs. Rafael Furcal had five hits.  Josh Hamilton hit a Grand Slam.  Alfonso Soriano returned from the DL. Troy Tulowitzki tore his quad and wil be out for a few months.  Same with Phil Hughes (rib).


The Raiders got McFadden.  There were a record 33 trades made in the draft.  They cut Dominic Rhodes shortly thereafter.  Dallas traded LB Akin Ayodele and TE Anthony Fasano to Bill Parcels and Miami for a 4th round pick.  Carolina signed Darwin Walker.  The Jets signed Danny Woodhead, the NCAA career rushing leader, to a free agent contract.  The Bills will be paid $78 million for their 8 games in Toronto over the next five years.
 
Darren Collison has decided he’s going to stay at UCLA.  His teammate Josh Shipp will dip his toes in the water.  Stanford named Johnny Dawkins head coach.  UNC’s Danny Green had declared for the draft.  Ben Hansbrough is transferring to Notre Dame.  UCLA’s Chace Stanbac is transferring from UCLA.  Washington State coach Tony Bennett got a $200K raise.
 
UCLA QB Patrick Cowan will miss the year after tearing his ACL.  Georgia Tech QB Taylor Bennett is transferring to Louisiana Tech.  Lou Holtz, Troy Aikman, Wilber Marshall, Randall McDaniel, Syracuse QB Don McPherson, Jay Novacek, Thurman Thomas and others were elected to the College Football Hall of Fame.
 
Adam Scott won the Byron Nelson Championship.
 
Kyle Busch won the Aaron’s 499 at Talladega.  Tony Stewart won the Nationwide Series race thre on Saturday.
 
 
That concludes the Tidbits. As always feel free to add any stories you liked this week in sports or discuss any of the stories I mentioned.
 
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So I didn’t do that well (I chose New Jersey, and Minnesota)Washington)  in the Opening Round of the Playoffs.  That’s not enough to stop me from making another round of predictions.

Montreal vs. Philadelphia
As much as I’d like to see the Broad Street Bullies continue to surprise, I’m going with Montreal.  Boston foot them tooth and nail, but they shoule know not to understimate anybody the rest of the way.

Pittsburgh vs. New York Rangers
I predicted New York to lose to New Jersey, so it should come as no shock to see I’m choosing Pittsburgh to roll over the Rangers this round.

Detroit vs. Colorado
This should be a fun series.  They have had epic battles in the past.  Problem is Colorado has many of the same players from the original rivalry, which means they are too old to be able to skate with Detroit.

San Jose vs. Dallas
Originally I chose San Jose to win the Stanley Cup.  I haven’t changed my mind yet (although Pittsburgh is close to making the switch).  I say they survive Dallas.

 | Posted by | Categories: Uncategorized | Tagged: NHL, playoffs, Stanley Cup |

George Kurtz of The Fantasy Sports Forum made his predictions for the opening round of the NHL Playoffs.  Let’s take a look at what he had to say.  George’s comments are in blue.  My picks are in orange.

With the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs set to begin on Wednesday, here is a preview of what to expect.

Eastern Conference
Montreal
(1) versus Boston (8)

Montreal won the season series 8-0.  I wouldn’t expect much to be different here.  Boston is an average team in a conference that is a little above average.  Could you even name who their top scorer is?  The Habs on the other hand have one of the better offenses in the NHL and a power play that is top notch.  Alexei Kovalev needs to lead the Canadiens in the playoffs, just like he has during the regular season.  
George’s Pick –
Montreal four games to one.
My pick – Montreal in five.  Boston is too overmatched. 

Pittsburgh (2) versus Ottawa (7)
This was not a good draw for Ottawa.  They are having problems on defense and in net, and who comes to town, Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, and Marion Hossa – fun, fun, fun.  In addition, Daniel Alfredsson and Mike Fisher will be out for the first round.  
George’s Pick –
Pittsburgh four games to two
My pick – Pittsburgh in five.  Too much offense.
 

Washington (3) versus Philadelphia (6)
Washington is the hottest team in the NHL, having won 11 of their last 12 games.  Sort of reminds you of the Colorado Rockies from baseball in 2007.  Philly has been up and down and is battling injuries to Daniel Briere and Simon Gagne.  The key to the series is Alexander Ovechkin, as he’s been an unstoppable force all season.  If Philly can keep him in check, they than can win the series.
George’s Pick –
Washington four games to three.
My pick – Washington in seven.  Ovechkin is on fire. 


New Jersey (4) versus Rangers (5)
The Rangers won the first seven games of the season series, yet in the most important game, the one that decided home ice advantage for the first round, they lost in a shootout.  Neither team scores a whole bunch, and they are both led by two terrific goalies, but when push comes to shove, the Rangers can score more than the Devils. 
George’s Pick –
Rangers four games to two
My pick – New Jersey in seven.  Goaltending will make the difference. 

Western Conference
Detroit (1) versus Nashville (8)
Nashville draws the short straw here.  Detroit is the best team in the NHL.  The only question marke they have is Dominki Hasek.  Can he stay healthy throughout the marathon which is the Stanley Cup Playoffs?  If he can, the teh Red Wings are the team to beat.
George’s Pick – Detroit four games to one.
My pick – Detroit in four.  Get out the Brooms. 

San Jose (2) versus Calgary (7)
Calgary has been an up and down team.  They seem to go as well as Jarome Iginla is playing.  
San Jose has been on fire for over a month now.  The addition of Brian Campbell seems to have been the missing piece the Sharks needed.  Patrick Marleau couldn’t have picked a better time to get hot.
George’s Pick –
San Jose four games to two.
My pick – San Jose in five.  San Jose is just too good.
 
 

Minnesota (3) versus Colorado (6)
If there is one lower seeded team that no one wants to play, Colorado is it.  Peter Forsberg and Joe Sakic are magic come playoff time, and they could be once again.Minnesota needs someone other than Marian Gaborik to come up big.  Pavol Demitra where are you?  
George’s Pick –
Colorado four games to three.
My Pick – Minnesota in seven.  Homer pick.   

Anaheim (4) versus Dallas (5)
One of the more interesting matchups in the first round.  Anaheim needs as much scoring as possible.  The return of winger will help fill that void, when he’s ready.  Anaheim is not going to give up many goals with their defense.  Sergei Zubov is almost certainly out for at least the first round, which will affect Dallas.
George’s Pick – Anaheim four games to two.
My Pick – Anaheim in seven.  The defending champs will live to fight another day.

Round 2
New Jersey over Montreal
Pittsburgh over Washington
Detroit over Anaheim
San Jose over Minnesota

Conference Finals
Pittsburgh over New Jersey
San Jose over Detroit

Stanley Cup Finals
San Jose over Pittsburgh

 | Posted by | Categories: Uncategorized | Tagged: NHL, playoffs, Stanley Cup |

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