The Grand Rapids Griffins are one win away from their first trip to the Calder Cup Finals. Thanks to some stellar goaltending from Petr Mrazek, the Griffins shut out the Oklahoma City Barons on back-to-back nights, posting 4-0 and 3-0 wins on Saturday and Sunday, respectively, to take a 3-2 series lead. Now, the series shifts back to Grand Rapids’ Van Andel Arena for Games 6 and 7, with the Griffins needing just one win to advance to the final round of the AHL playoffs.
Speaking of Mrazek, his outstanding play between the pipes forced us to bend the rules for Michi-gamer a bit, and he kicks off this week’s list. Click this link to read why, and you’ll quickly understand.
If you’re within driving distance to Van Andel, we urge you to go to Game 6 tomorrow to support the team.
On Friday, we were down at Joe Louis Arena for locker room clean-out day with the Red Wings. The big news items of the day were that GM Ken Holland has no plans of using an amnesty buy-out on Johan Franzen, and that Pavel Datsyuk wants to stick around for a while. More news on the day can be found right here. We also posted a feature on Danny DeKeyser, because even though he hasn’t played in a while, he’s still the talk of the Red Wings’ locker room…and he still needs to clean out his college apartment.
Joakim Andersson and Jeff Blashill talk to Griffvision after the Griffins’ Game 5 win.
In the span of a weekend, the Chicago Blackhawks took a commanding lead in their third-round series with the Los Angeles Kings. Playing on back-to-back nights Saturday and Sunday, the Hawks picked up 2-1 and 4-2 wins, and now head to Hollywood knowing that if they can win at least one game on the road, they will have a chance to eliminate the defending Stanley Cup champions on home ice in Game 5.
The Pittsburgh Penguins had a little trouble Saturday evening in Game 1 of their series with the Boston Bruins. The top seed in the East was clearly rattled by the B’s physical play, with both Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin especially flustered and overly-talkative. Malkin even dropped the gloves with Patrice Bergeron in a scene reminiscent of his ‘fight’ with Henrik Zetterberg in 2009.
Tempers flared in Chicago last night, too, with L.A. back-up goaltender Jonathan Bernier staring down Chicago netminder Corey Crawford after Crawford stepped in to help out Jonathan Toews in a little skirmish. This photo that Aaron Ward tweeted sums up the situation pretty well.
— Aaron Ward (@aaronward_nhl) June 3, 2013
It’s like a cup of coffee for your Monday morning…