Womens Marian Hossa

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2 weeks 4 days ago #1 by elaine95
LAS VEGAS (AP) The bookies in this gambling city have to be getting a bit nervous.Hockey fans Womens Marian Hossa Jersey , though, are nothing short of ecstatic.They screamed, danced and cheered as the goals came one right after another in a first period blitz Thursday night as the Vegas Golden Knights remained undefeated in the playoffs by dominating the San Jose Sharks 7-0 in the opening game of the Western Conference semifinals.The hottest show on the Las Vegas Strip got even hotter as the Knights – who were 200-1 at many sports books to win the Stanley Cup before the season began – opened their second playoff series with a rout of the Sharks that was over before the Zambonis hit the ice.This had nothing to do with the so-called Vegas Flu that has overcome some visiting teams who might have not resisted some of the pleasures on the Las Vegas Strip. This was a simple beat down, by a group of players who had never been together on the ice before the season began.”It’s not going to be like this every night,” Knights goalie Marc-Andre Fleury said. ”We’re going to enjoy this and move on.”Once again, the Knights played like no expansion team ever before. Once again, they showed that perhaps the fantasy of bringing the Stanley Cup to the Las Vegas Strip may not be such a fantasy after all.And once again, 18,444 fans sang ”Viva Las Vegas” and went home happy – but not before watching Fleury join them in doing the wave in the closing minutes.”It’s a great home crowd,” Vegas coach Gerard Gallant said. ”We like them a lot.”There’s a lot to like about a team that a year ago was nothing more than an expansion project with an uncertain future. Now the Knights are tearing through the playoffs like a hot dice thrower at the craps table.That might be a problem at the sports books, which are on the hook for possibly millions if the Knights should win it all. But it’s playing out nicely around the rest of Las Vegas, which is awash in Knights merchandise as the city that has never had a major sports team eagerly embraces one that is its very own.If getting to the playoffs was seen as almost impossible before the season began, the Knights are 5-1 in sports books on the Strip to win it all, just behind Nashville and Tampa Bay as favorites.With good reason. The Knights are the only remaining unbeaten team in the playoffs, and have the hottest goalie around. Fleury, picked up from Pittsburgh in the expansion draft, got his third shutout of the playoffs and has allowed only three goals in five games.He didn’t allow any against the Sharks, stopping 33 shots to record the shutout.”I don’t go looking at my stats,” Fleury said. ”A win is a win and I’ll try my best to get my team a win. That’s what it’s all about.”The team that proudly declares itself Vegas Born thrilled a raucous crowd at the T-Mobile arena, scoring three goals within a span of 1:31 in the first period to pretty much put the game away early.Against a team that – like the Knights – swept their opening series, they turned the game into a rout early. Seven players scored goals, though with Fleury in net there was no way seven would be needed.”You don’t get extra points for winning by a touchdown like they did,” San Jose coach Peter DeBoer said. ”We just have to be better.”Earlier, Knights general manager George McPhee talked about how good the team he put together might be. But even he had to be surprised at the ease the Knights, coming off a nine-day layoff after sweeping the Los Angeles Kings, won their second-round opener.”We think we’re a pretty good club but we’ll keep trying to do what we do and see where it takes us,” McPhee said. ”We haven’t really looked at the season in its totality before it started, or the playoffs in its totality.”The formula for the Knights has been as simple as it has been effective. With some top talent there for the taking in the expansion draft the Knights combined a fast, swarming attack with stellar work of Fleury to win their division.Nothing changed in the opening game against the Sharks except the goals came early and often.”We play fast, we play quick, we play direct hockey,” Gallant said. ”So far it’s worked for us.”The Knights have done all of that, and more to move into the serious conversation about what teams can win the Stanley Cup.If any more proof was needed Patrick Kane Jersey , even the bookies are believers now.—-Tim Dahlberg is a national sports columnist for The Associated Press. Write to him at tdahlberg(at)ap.org or twitter.com/timdahlberg WASHINGTON (AP) Overtime came at the perfect time for the Washington Capitals.Outshot, outskated and outplayed by the Columbus Blue Jackets in a lopsided third period of Game 5, the Capitals went into their locker room at intermission Saturday with no choice but to talk about what went wrong in blowing yet another lead.”We knew we had to be better,” Nicklas Backstrom said.Better they were in a dominant overtime that Backstrom ended 11:53 in with his second goal of the game to give Washington a 4-3 victory and a 3-2 lead over the Blue Jackets in the first-round series. Thanks to goaltender Braden Holtby making 15 of his 39 saves in the third period and Backstrom’s first two goals of these playoffs, the Metropolitan Division champions can close out Columbus on the road Monday in Game 6.”I think we’ve always regrouped at intermissions and came back,” said Holtby, who has stopped 102 of 109 shots since replacing Philipp Grubauer in net two periods into Game 2. ”It shows our confidence and our experience in a lot of areas.”The playoff-tested Capitals took punch after punch when they were outshot 16-1 by the Blue Jackets in the third period, including Oliver Bjorkstrand’s deflection goal 2:30 in that tied it. Holtby made saves in quantity and quality, most notably on Columbus No. 1 center Pierre-Luc Dubois on a rebound and again on an attempt to bat the puck out of the air, to get to overtime for the fourth time in five games this series.That’s when everything changed. Suddenly, two-time Vezina Trophy-winning goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky was besieged, having to stop Alex Ovechkin and John Carlson from point-blank range early in overtime.”We just came out as a new team,” Carlson said. ”We’ve went out and attacked in every game that we’ve won. That was our mindset, and I think we played a great overtime.”Overtime has been the difference in this series. Artemi Panarin and Matt Calvert scored the winners in Games 1 and 2 for Columbus, Lars Eller in double OT in Game 3 for Washington and then Backstrom in Game 5, deflecting defenseman Dmitry Orlov’s shot past Bobrovsky to send the sellout crowd in Washington into a frenzy.”I got a tip on it, and it’s usually what happens in the playoffs,” Backstrom said. ”Tip goals or rebound goals. That’s the way it is.”The road team won the first four games of a Stanley Cup playoff series for the fifth time over the past 10 years. Holtby’s 39 saves, including a big one on Bjorkstrand in overtime, made sure the home team won Game 5 for the fifth time.”One of our best players, our goalie, was our best player again,” Washington forward Brett Connolly said. ”He’s come in here and he’s played three amazing games. Kudos to him. He’s been great for us and we obviously need him to keep playing this way if we’re going to be successful.”Bobrovsky didn’t play poorly other than perhaps a soft goal allowed to Evgeny Kuznetsov early in the second period. After two goals from Matt Calvert and his team’s effort wasn’t enough Saturday, coach John Tortorella is betting on ”Bob” to come up big again in Game 6.”Two good goalies. Good game,” Tortorella said. ”We’ll be back here for Game 7.”It’s now the Capitals’ goal to avoid a Game 7 at home, where they’re 2-5 over the past decade in the Ovechkin era. Coach Barry Trotz, whose team has lost the past two times they’ve played Game 7 at home, shrugged off Tortorella’s assurance of a game in Washington on Wednesday after players insisted they know what to expect from Columbus in Game 6.”What else is he going to say?” Trotz said. ”It’s our job for that not to happen.”NOTES: Bobrovsky allowed four goals on 29 shots. … Thirteen of the Capitals’ past 24 playoff games have been decided in overtime. … With an assist on T.J. Oshie’s power-play goal, Carlson has eight points through five games. … Ovechkin led all players with seven shots on goal. … Calvert scored twice in a playoff game for the second time in his career. … Blue Jackets C Alexander Wennberg returned after missing Games 2, 3 and 4 following a hit to the head from Tom Wilson. He replaced Sonny Milano in the lineup. … The Capitals made no changes after winning back-to-back games in Columbus, keeping Chandler Stephenson on the second line in the absence of Andre Burakovsky, who’s out for at least the remainder of the series with an upper-body injury.—

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