It just was not meant to be. It would have been a feel-good story with Jumbo Joe Thornton at the twilight of his career again chasing a Stanley Cup against the team which drafted him–the Boston Bruins. Instead, we’ve got the Cinderella story out of nowhere trying to win their first
Masters Stanley Cup (Caddyshack reference). The Ottawa Senators and Edmonton Oilers are about ready to tab coaches and Pittsburgh Penguins Matt Murray and Jared McCann played a big role in Canada’s win over Team USA.
I’m not sure how important to ascribe to the Worlds, but it’s better than nothing. Murray and McCann led the 3-0 shutout of Team USA (Sportsnet)
The St. Louis Blues dispatched the depleted San Jose Sharks. It almost wasn’t a fair fight as San Jose was without Erik Karlsson, Tomas Herlt and Joe Pavelski. The Blues are savoring a return to the Stanley Cup Final in 49 years (ESPN)
49 years between Final appearances. Let that sink in–fans continued to show up. St. Louis joined Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Oakland/San Francisco, Minnesota and Los Angeles as expansion teams in 1967. The Oakland franchise didn’t stick and moved to Cleveland and eventually merged with Minnesota, which eventually moved to Dallas. So 3.5 of the original-six expansion have won the Stanley Cup. St. Louis is the last not do so.
The Boston Bruins will hold a scrimmage at TD Gardens to stay sharp. That’s pretty cool but cmon, 11 days is a ridiculous layoff and happens every year to at least one team in the Stanley Cup Final. (Boston Hockey Now)
Craig Custance of The Athletic put together their Top 20 UFA list with analysis (The Athletic)
There could be some big changes coming to Nashville, too. P.K. Subban, Ryan Ellis, Kyle Turris are being discussed. Our boys over at NHL Rumors put together all of the stories in one place (NHL Rumors)
GM Ken Holland now of the Edmonton Oilers is cleaning house (Sportsnet)
Dave Tippet remains the front runner for the Edmonton coaching job (TSN)
The Ottawa Senators may name a coach by the weekend. Here is a recap of all of the candidates (Silver Seven Sens)
And for those who didn’t catch it–here is PHN’s attempt to cast the Penguins as Game of Thrones characters. Don’t worry, later today we will return to more serious matters with the release of our Top 5 trade bait list. (Pittsburgh Hockey Now)