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March 22, 2018 121 mins

THN Season 2, Episode 29 (Episode 74) Show Notes 3/15-3/21


Music by Bensound at

Rangers highlights courtesy of MSG Network.  Bruins highlights courtesy of NESN.  Hurricanes highlights courtesy of Fox Sports Carolinas.  Other highlights and clips courtesy of NBC, NBC Sports Network, CBC, Sportsnet, and the National Hockey League.


Opening Tease:

  • Playoff Races!!!
  • I
  • We’ll have all this and more.


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    Bruins/Rangers/Canes updates

    Bos:   3-0 L @ Fla on 3/15, 3-0 W @ TBL on 3/17, 5-4 OTL vs CBJ on 3/


    Car:  4-2 L vs PHI on 3/17, 4-3 W @ NYI on 3/18, 7-3 L vs Edm on 3/20

    NYR: 4-3 OTW vs PIT on 3/14, 4-3 OTL @ Stl on3/17, 5-3 L vs CBJ on 3/20

    Other Notable games:

    Thursday, 3/15: (9 games) Friday, 3/16: (6 games) Saturday, 3/17:  (10 games) Sunday, 3/18:  (8 games) Monday, 3/19: (5 games) Tuesday, 3/20: (11 Games) Wednesday, 3/21:  (4 games) Thursday, 3/22:  (10 games) Friday, 3/23:  (5 games)


    NHL Standings:



    NHL Transactions:

  • Ryan Donato signed a two-year, entry-level contract with the Boston Bruins on Sunday. The 21-year-old forward will join the Bruins in Boston and is eligible to play against the Columbus Blue Jackets at TD Garden on Monday (7 p.m. ET; SN, TVAS, NESN, FS-O, NHL.TV).  Donato, who was selected by the Bruins in the second round (No. 56) of the 2014 NHL Draft, completed his junior season at Harvard University on Friday with a loss to Clarkson in the ECAC semifinals. He led Harvard with 26 goals and 43 points in 29 games, was the ECAC player of the year, and is a finalist for the Hobey Baker Award as the top player in NCAA Division I men's hockey.  Donato (6-foot-1, 190 pounds) played for the United States at the 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics, when he tied for the most goals in the tournament with five in five games. His six points (five goals, one assist) led the U.S. 
  • Other trades:
  • Other Transactions:  &




  • Ben Bishopwill be out at least two weeks for the Dallas Stars after reinjuring his left knee Sunday in a 4-2 loss to the Winnipeg Jets at Bell MTS Place.  The goaltender, who stopped all three shots he faced, left the game at 10:11 of the first period, after appearing to injure his left knee making a glove save on Bryan Little.  Bishop (26-17-5, 2.49 goals-against average, .916 save percentage) first injured the knee in a 2-0 loss against the Nashville Predators on March 6 and missed five games. He returned to the Stars lineup for a 3-2  overtime loss against the Ottawa Senators on March 16, and Sunday was his second game back.  Kari Lehtonen (12-10-3, 2.46 GAA,.913 save percentage), who replaced Bishop on Sunday, started all five games in Bishop's most recent absence and was 1-3-1.  The Stars recalled forward Curtis McKenzie and goalie Mike McKenna from Texas of the American Hockey League on Monday. McKenzie  is 15-9-4 with a 2.69 GAA, and .907 save percentage in 30 AHL appearances. 
  • Noah Hanifinwill be out indefinitely for the Carolina Hurricanes because of a concussion.  The 21-year-old defenseman left the third period of a 4-2 loss to the Philadelphia Flyers on Saturday and did not travel with the Hurricanes for their 4-3 win at the New York Islanders on Sunday.  Hanifin has 29 points (eight goals, 21 assists) this season and hadn't missed a game prior to Sunday. 
  • Dmitry Kulikovhas opted to not have surgery to correct a back injury, Winnipeg Jets coach Paul Maurice said Monday.  The 27-year-old defenseman injured his back against the New Jersey Devils on March 8, a reoccurrence of an injury last season with the Buffalo Sabres that limited him to 47 games after he was hit into an open door by Toronto Maple Leafs forward Colin Greening in a preseason game.  Maurice said Saturday that Kulikov would have surgery soon and that it would be eight weeks before any further update would be provided.  After practice Monday, Maurice said Kulikov decided on a different path to treat his injury.  "He had a couple of opinions on his injury, had met with surgeons, and it's never clearly one way or the other that he should go, so when he met for his final consult, and it's the player's choice what he wants to do, he's going to forego surgery," Maurice said. "There are other remedies for this, so he didn't have surgery today.  Maurice said that the injury won't necessarily require surgery eventually.  Kulikov has missed five games since the injury occurred. He has 11 points (three goals, eight assists) in 62 games. 
  • Michael Rafflwill be out two weeks for the Philadelphia Flyers with an upper-body injury.  The forward left a 6-3 win against the Washington Capitals on Sunday at 14:46 of the second period. He has 19 points (11 goals, eight assists) in 73 games. 
  • Kevin Bieksawill have surgery to remove scar tissue from his left hand Friday and the Anaheim Ducks defenseman will be out 2-5 weeks.  The Ducks hope to have Bieksa back for the Stanley Cup Playoffs, which begin April 11. Bieksa has eight assists and is averaging 18:01 of ice time in 59 games this season.  Bieksa, 36, is in the final year of a two-year contract extension he signed July 1, 2015 and can become an unrestricted free agent July 1. He has 278 points (63 goals, 215 assists) in 808 NHL games over 13 seasons with the Vancouver Canucks and Ducks. 
  • Malcolm Subbanmade 22 saves for the Vegas Golden Knights, taking over for Marc-Andre Fleury in a 4-1 win against the Vancouver Canucks at T-Mobile Arena on Tuesday.  Fleury made seven saves in the first period but did not start the second because of an undisclosed injury. He was hit in the mask by a Brandon Sutter shot 10 minutes into the first.  Gallant confirmed the move to bring in Subban was not to give Fleury rest. Fleury has started 21 of the past 22 games.  
  • Ryan Callahanwill not accompany the Tampa Bay Lightning on their two-game road trip after sustaining an upper-body injury against the Toronto Maple Leafs on Tuesday.  Callahan tangled with Toronto forward Josh Leivo with four minutes left in the first period. He went to the dressing room holding his right shoulder and did not return.  Lightning coach Jon Cooper said he was encouraged by Callahan's presence at practice Wednesday but that the 33-year-old forward needed more evaluation and would not travel for games at the New York Islanders on Thursday. 
  • Winnipeg Jets right wing Patrik Laineleft their game against the Los Angeles Kings on Tuesday with a lower-body injury and did not return. Coach Paul Maurice said he does not think the injury is long-term, but fantasy owners of the elite goal-scorer are awaiting a further update for purposes of the fantasy playoffs.  Laine (21st in Yahoo) leads the League in goals (18 in 16 games) since Feb. 16, thriving on a line with mostly center Paul Stastny and left wing Nikolaj Ehlers since the 2018 NHL Trade Deadline. Laine ranks second in goals (43) behind Washington Capitals left wing Alex Ovechkin (44) through 73 games each. 
  • Louis Blues right wing Vladimir Tarasenkowill miss his second-straight game against the Boston Bruins on Wednesday (8 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TVAS, NHL.TV). He did not play against the Chicago Blackhawks on Sunday because of an upper-body injury. 
  • On IR / Off IR:
  • Suspensions/Fines:

  • Tampa Bay Lightning forward Steven Stamkoshas been fined $5,000, the maximum allowable under the Collective Bargaining Agreement, for a dangerous trip against Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Morgan Rielly during NHL Game No. 1127 in Tampa on Tuesday, March 20, the National Hockey League's Department of Player Safety announced today.  The incident occurred at 10:25 of the second period. Stamkos was assessed a minor penalty for elbowing. 
  •   Other Interesting Stories:


  • NHL general managers want to give the final authority on goaltender interference reviews initiated by the coach's challenge to the Situation Room in Toronto. The on-ice officials have the final authority on these reviews, but they consult with members of the NHL Hockey Operations Department in the Situation Room before deciding to allow or overturn the goal.  The League hopes to make an announcement on the potential change in the review process Wednesday, but it is still determining whether it needs approval from other organizations, including the NHL Players' Association, the NHL Officials Association and the Board of Governors, because it involves a change in playing conditions.  The hope is to implement the change immediately.  If BOG approval is required, the League needs a unanimous vote of yes to make an in-season change.  "What I'm hearing from the managers is they want consistency," Colin Campbell, NHL senior executive vice president of hockey operations, said Tuesday following Day Two of the General Managers meetings at the Boca Beach Club. "And it's not who is doing it, it's that we've got five guys in [the Situation Room] that participate in [the review process], two that do 90 percent of them and in the playoffs we've got one individual that does them all."  One change being considered is adding recently retired referees to the decision-making process.  Kris King, NHL senior vice president of hockey operations, said Monday the Situation Room had strong disagreement with the final decision on only four of the 170 reviews for goaltender interference through 1,100 games this season. Start after George McPhee interview
  • Head Contact suspensions down, focus being changed to boarding and interference
  • The rule for offside, especially as it relates to the coach's challenge, is expected to be a topic of discussion among NHL general managers during their breakout group sessions on Day 2 of their annual March meetings at the Boca Beach Club on Tuesday. The GMs, who spent their entire session on Day 1 Monday discussing the coach's challenge for goaltender interference, will break off into separate groups to discuss various aspects of the game, likely including a debate on if the wording of the rule for offside should change to allow for a player to be deemed onside even if his trailing skate is in the air while his front skate is in contact with the ice but over the leading edge of the blue line. 
  • NHL general managers were scheduled to spend 1 1/2 hours discussing goaltender interference on the first day of their meetings Monday. They spent three. They looked at 14 video clips of coach's challenges. Afterward, reporters were invited to watch five of the same clips on the same screens in the same hotel ballroom. Asked to vote "goal" or "no goal," sometimes the room was split.  "Clear as mud," senior vice president of hockey operations Kris King said. The takeaway from the exercise: As much as everyone wants clarity and consistency, goaltender interference is not black and white. It's subjective. When it comes to the most controversial calls, reasonable people disagree.
  • Goaltender interference will be decided by officials in the NHL Situation Room in Toronto if a recommended change made by League general managers is approved Wednesday. The rule change would shift final determination on goalie interference away from on-ice officials to the NHL Hockey Operations Department, which would include a member of the NHL Officiating Management Team comprised of former referees.  The hope is the rule change will be in place by the end of the regular season. It first needs approval by the NHL Board of Governors and the NHL/NHLPA Competition Committee. The proposal by the GMs makes no changes to the standard under which goaltender interference is judged, and includes no changes to the criteria governing whether on-ice calls should be overturned. 


  • Louis Blues defenseman Alex Pietrangelo, Colorado Avalanche center Nathan MacKinnonand Toronto Maple Leafs goaltender Curtis McElhinney have been named the NHL's "Three Stars" for the week ending March 18.  Pietrangelo led the NHL with 3-6-9 in four games to power the Blues (39-28-5, 83 points) to a 3-1-0 week and within one point of the final playoff spot in the Western Conference.  MacKinnon paced the NHL with six goals and ranked second with eight points (6 2-8) in four games as the Avalanche (39-25-8, 86 points) went 3-1-0 to climb into the first Wild Card spot in the Western Conference.   McElhinney went 3-0-0 with a 1.57 goals-against average, .955 save percentage and one shutout as the Maple Leafs (43-22-7, 93 points) posted a perfect week to move within two wins of matching the single-season franchise record (reached in 1998-99, 1999-00 and 2003-04). 


    Power Ranking:

  • X - Nashville (1)
  • X - Tampa Bay (2)
  • Boston (3)
  • Winnipeg (5)
  • Vegas (4)
  • Toronto (6)
  • San Jose (10)
  • Washington (7)
  • Minnesota (8)
  • Colorado (11)
  • Pittsburgh (9)
  • Anaheim (16)
  • Los Angeles (12)
  • Columbus (17)
  • Philly (14)
  • St Louis (19)
  • Dallas (13)
  • Florida (15)
  • New Jersey (20)
  • Calgary (18)
  • Rangers (23)
  • Carolina (22)
  • Islanders (21)
  • Edmonton (25)
  • e - Chicago (24)
  • Detroit (27)
  • Montreal (26)
  • Ottawa (28)
  • e - Arizona (30)
  • e - Vancouver (29)
  • e - Buffalo (31)


    Looking ahead: 

    Bos:   @STL on 3/21, @DAL on 3/23, @MIN on 3/25, @ WPG on 3/27, vs TBL on 3/29

    Car:  vs ARI on 3/22, @ OTT on 3/24, vs OTT on 3/26, @ NJD on 3/27

    NYR: @ PHI on 3/22, vs BUF on 3/24, vs WSH on 3/26, @WSH on 3/28, vs TBL on 3/30, @CAR on 3/31


    Other Notable games:

    Wednesday, 3/21:  (4 games) Thursday, 3/22:  (10 games) Friday, 3/23:  (5 games) Saturday, 3/24:  (12 games) Sunday, 3/25:  (5 games) Monday, 3/26:  (9 games) Tuesday, 3/27: (9 Games) Wednesday, 3/28:  (4 games) Thursday, 3/29:  (10 games)



    Minor League Hockey Minute





    Steve:  University of Illinois feasibility Study



    College Hockey Minute:


                    NCAA Tournament field announced on Sunday:


    Go to Bracket Page…



    USCHO Poll: Pairwise Rankings:




    Don Lucia has stepped down as Minnesota’s head coach after a 19-year run that included two national championships, the school announced Tuesday.  Lucia, 59, will finish his final season under contract at Minnesota as special assistant to the athletic director through the 2018-19 school year.  “Gopher Hockey is not just a college hockey program, it’s a cultural institution in the state of Minnesota, built on more than 90 years of success and tradition. Few have contributed as much to that legacy as Don,” Gophers athletic director Mark Coyle said in a statement. “He knows how much I appreciate everything he has accomplished in his 19 years as head coach, but he and I also agree that it’s time for someone else to lead our program. From his program’s commitment to academic excellence to the banners his teams raised into in our rafters, I can’t thank him enough for what he’s contributed to the success of Gopher Hockey.”  Lucia’s the second-winningest active coach of a Division I men’s team at 736-403-102, behind only Boston College coach Jerry York’s 1,053 victories.  In 19 seasons at Minnesota, Lucia posted a 457-248-73 mark, in addition to national championships in 2002 and 2003.  Lucia’s Minnesota teams won eight league regular-season titles (four in the WCHA, four in the Big Ten) and four playoff titles (three in the WCHA, one in the Big Ten).  But the Gophers didn’t qualify for the NCAA tournament in two of his final three seasons and had first-round exits in his last two NCAA appearances, in 2015 and 2017.


    NCAA Division III Bracket:




    Picks of the week:

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    Listener Feedback / Action item for the week


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