MHH Playoffs Live Thread! Eliminations abound! April 22, 2012

LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 18: Head Coach Darryl Sutter of the Los Angeles Kings is smelling orca blood. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

Sorry about the delay, folks. This is what happens when you forget NHL.com lists times for our East Coast brethren. This is going to be a cut and paste job from NHL.com.

The "Is this ever going to end" Game: #5 Philadelphia Flyers at #4 Pittsburgh Penguins, Game 6, Right Now, NBC Live Stream and Some Canadian channel . Flyers lead series, 3 games to 2.

The Flyers apparently didn't like losing 10-3, so they've come out with a vengeance. Already up 4-1 at the end of the second. Looks like Syndey is going to have to cry on the golf course. Maybe.

The "Turned out to a better series than I expected" Game: #7 Washington Capitals at #2 Boston Bruins, Game 6, 3:00 PM Eastern, NBC & CBC & NBC Live Stream (3-2)

Big Story: The defending Stanley Cup champions are on the brink of elimination after Saturday's stunning loss at TD Garden.

Team Scope:

Capitals: Troy Brouwer scored one of the biggest goals of his life Saturday, as the rugged forward broke a 3-3 tie with 1:27 remaining in regulation to lift Washington to a 4-3 victory at Boston's TD Garden. Not only did it give the Caps a victory, but it moved them within a win of advancing to the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

"Some relief, that's for sure," Brouwer said, as Washington blew two leads before ultimately winning Game 5. "A lot of joy. Especially late in the game like that, we were getting buzzed a little bit, and I think they had a little bit of momentum off the power-play goal. So for us, to get a power play late, create a little bit of offense, ultimately get a goal, it's good."

Bruins: Ten months after winning the Conn Smythe Trophy as the League's Most Valuable Player in the playoffs, Bruins goalie Tim Thomas is on the verge of going home early. Brouwer's shot off the right wing appeared to be stoppable, but it managed to sneak past Thomas in a potentially-devastating loss.

"The third goal I wish I could have controlled the rebound better, and then the last goal he fooled me and beat me clean," Thomas said. "He's coming down with a lot of speed and he shot and I read that the shot was going lower. And by the time I even realized that the shot was going that high, I didn't even have time to raise my hand."

The "BEAT THE DAMN NUCKS ALREADY" Game: #8 Los Angeles Kings at #1 Vancouver Canucks, Game 5, 8:00 PM Eastern, CNBC & CBC (3-1)

Please oh please oh please beat the Canucks in their barn, Kings.

Big Story: Shifting momentum. It took a period to play out, but the return of leading goal scorer Daniel Sedin and, with him the power play, made a huge difference as the Presidents' Trophy-winning Canucks stayed alive with a 3-1 victory in Game 4 on Wednesday night. Vancouver dominated the final two periods, converted two of three man advantages after failing to score on their first 14 – and giving up two shorthanded goals – and grabbed the momentum.

The question as the series shifts back to Vancouver, is whether and of it survived the three days off between games, a result of two sold out Coldplay concerts.

The unusually long break gave Sedin, out since March 21 with a concussion, more time to find his legs and get reacquainted with twin brother Henrik Sedin and new linemate David Booth in practice. But it's also give the Kings more time to prepare for the Canucks' new looks up front, especially the reunited twins.

"We got to handle the Sedins better," coach Darryl Sutter said. "They're going to play a lot. As a group, we have to handle them better. It's pretty clear how good players they are, and they have great instincts when they're together."

Team Scope:

Canucks: Vancouver got two goals from a top power play unit anchored by Daniel and Henrik Sedin, and another on a lucky bounce with those two out on the top line. What they could really use is some offense from the second line and center Ryan Kesler, who got Alexandre Burrows back to start Game 4 and was joined by Maxim Lapierre before it ended. Kesler did set the screen that led directly to Alexander Edler’s power play goal, and was again a factor in front of the net when Henrik added a second with the man advantage. But last year's Selke Trophy winner as the NHL's best defensive forward has yet to score in these playoffs, part of a goalless drought that is now 16 games long. That's too long for a player that either scored or assisted on 11 of the Canucks' 14 goals during their second-round playoff series against Nashville last year.

"It matters the way we play, that we're doing the right things to help the team win," Kesler insisted. "It doesn't matter who is scoring -- as long as someone is."

Kings: Goals have been hard to come by most of this season, but Los Angeles continued a late-season scoring surge with four in each of the first games against Roberto Luongo. Since then, however, they've only managed to put two of 64 shots behind Cory Schneider, and have only managed four even-strength goals the entire series. They can't count on scoring two shorthanded goals like they did in Game 2, though captain Dustin Brown did have a chance at his third after getting hauled down on a shorthanded break in Game 4 and being rewarded with a penalty shot. So the Kings need their power play, which scored three times in the first two games – and once more just after another advantage expired – to break out of its current 1-for-15 funk. At least it created chances in Game 4.

"But you do have to score on them," Sutter said.


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