1-48) - First place in AL Central After Baltimore, th
#1
MONTREAL -- When Lars Eller and Rene Bourque are outscoring anyone on the top line, you know that something is going right for the Montreal Canadiens. Nike Air Max Uk Sale Outlet . But it took until the playoffs for the Canadiens to find the balanced attack they have sought all season. Getting offensive production from all four forward lines has helped them win the opening three games of their first-round series against the Tampa Bay Lightning. They can sweep the best-of-seven series with a win on Tuesday night at the Bell Centre. "Thats a big strength," Eller said Monday. "I cant stress how important it is to have everybody involved, everybody contributing." Players who underachieved on attack all season, notably Eller and Bourque, have found new life in the post-season. It has helped the normally low-scoring Canadiens average four goals per game against the Bolts, who are missing top goaltender Ben Bishop to an arm injury. Bourque, a two-time 27-goal scorer who had a dreadful campaign of only nine goals, has three in as many games in the playoffs while playing left wing with centre Eller and right-winger Brian Gionta. Eller, who had 12 goals in 77 games including stretch of 24 games with only one assist, has two goals and shares the team scoring lead with four points with Brendan Gallagher and defenceman P.K. Subban. The Eller line has produced five goals, one more than Gallaghers unit with Tomas Plekanec and Brandon Prust. The top line of David Desharnais, Max Pacioretty and Thomas Vanek has scored only twice, but has combined for 29 shots in three games. The fourth line of Daniel Briere with Michael Bournival and Dale Weise has only one goal, but it was a big one as Weise scored in overtime in Game 1. "Right now we have momentum and were riding that wave," said Eller. "We knew depth was going to be important and I think a big part of why were having success is we have all four lines contributing in one way or another. "I guess the playoffs are just bringing out the best in all of us." The Lightning are aware they have dug themselves a deep hole. Only three teams have ever come back from a three-game deficit to win an NHL playoff series, most recently the Philadelphia Flyers against Boston in the second round in 2010. The Canadiens are 31-0 when holding a 3-0 lead. Tampa Bay had its best outing in Game 3 on Sunday night, but dropped a 3-2 decision. They thought they had a 2-1 lead in the second period, but Ryan Callahans goal was waived off due to Alex Killorns incidental contact on goalie Carey Price. "That was obviously a tough one to swallow," said Lightning star Steven Stamkos. "A couple of calls didnt go our way. "We cant dwell on it now. We realize the situation were in. We just have to win one game. Our backs are against the wall. Im pretty sure youre going to see a good effort from us. Thats our motto right now: Just win one, then lets go back home and see what happens." Some wondered if Stamkos would be fit to play after taking an accidental knee to the head from Canadiens defenceman Alexei Emelin late in the second period. He returned for the third, but admitted later he took a major whack to the head. "I feel pretty good so, yeah, Im expecting to play," he said. "I got tangled up with Prust there and slid in. "I dont think Emelin saw me and I got a pretty good knee to the head. Now that I saw it, I dont think there was any intention or anything. It was just kind of a play that happens in a game." Emelin and his defence partner Andrei Markov were given a day off as the Canadiens held a short practice at their suburban training centre at the same time the Lightning skated at the Bell Centre. The talk was mostly about how all four Montreal lines have played well in the series, which is a surprise on a team whose first unit carried the attack for much of the season. After Vanek was acquired at the NHL trade deadline, he, Pacioretty and Desharnais produced 20 goals in the last 18 games of the regular season. "Im not surprised," said coach Michel Therrien. "We have to play well as a team defensively and that includes our forwards and our defence. "We have to stick to our structure, stick to the game plan. This is when were at our best offensively. When we start running around, thats when we get in trouble. But a lot of credit goes to the players. They stick to the game plan and they believe in it. And they have a lot of fun to play in that structure because they get results." Montreals only area of concern is special teams. The power play that went 0-for-23 over the final eight regular season games has only one goal in 11 chances in the playoffs. They spent the time leading up to the series working on the power play, but it continues to struggle. "The only thing we need to improve on is the power play," said Vanek. "We got some good chances again, but weve got to start burying our chances. Its something Im sure well address and get better at." The Lightning have two goals on six chances against Montreals penalty killing, which was fourth best in the league in the regular season. So far, the Canadiens have done enough at even strength to beat coach Jon Coopers young Lightning. Now they hope to end it in four games. As teams have always done in that situation, the Canadiens told each other the fourth win in the hardest to get. "The first three were pretty tough, too," said Vanek. "Cliches are cliches. We enjoyed the win. Everyone felt good about it. Todays a new day. Well get back to work and hopefully we can close it out." Coopers message was much the same -- just win the next one. "Im not going to throw out all the cliches and lets win one for the Gipper and all those little kinds of things," he said. "The reality is you cant win a series in one game. "I truly believe theres not much more wrong that can go against us. At some point karmas going to come around and we just need it for one night. All of a sudden you just gotta win one and you win that one and everybodys back on a plane. Who knows what happens after that?" Nike Air Max Cheap Uk Online . -- Phil Mickelson came to the St. Wholesale Air Max Uk . Those cheers seemed more special this time because the captains run on Broadway could soon be over. The adoration surely sounded much nicer to Callahan than all the recent trade talk. http://www.ukairmax.com/ . He was 90. The team announced Monday that Adams had died, saying he "passed away peacefully from natural causes." The son of a prominent oil executive, Adams built his own energy fortune and founded the Houston Oilers.The next nine days probably wont determine the Toronto Blue Jays playoff fate, but the upcoming stretch of games definitely will play a role. Over the next three series, Toronto will face the East-leading Baltimore Orioles, the Central-leading Detroit Tigers and finally the Wild Card-vying Seattle Mariners. The Blue Jays can put themselves in a better position to make the postseason for the first time since 1993 with a solid record over this stretch or they could put themselves out of it entirely with a disastrous one. So the question is: How many games will the Blue Jays win over the next nine days? Baltimore Orioles (63-48) - Four games ahead of Blue Jays for first in AL East This one has been marked on Torontos calendar for quite some time. The clubs have split the first 10 games of their season series and the Jays can pull within a game of the Orioles for the division lead with a sweep. Toronto had been playing good ball until they ran into a pesky Astros squad, losing three of four in Houston over the weekend. Toronto should get a jolt to the lineup as Brett Lawrie was activated from the disabled list Monday night and is expected to get the start Tuesday in the opener. Baltimore, on the other hand, has been red-hot since the All-Star break with an impressive 11-6 record. The Orioles are also the American Leagues best road team with 33 victories away from Camden Yards so far this season. They acquired relief pitcher Andrew Miller from the Boston Red Sox on deadline day and seem to be putting things together both at the plate and on the mound.  Baltimore will go with Bud Norris (8-7), Wei-Yin Chen (12-3) and Miguel Gonzalez (5-6) while Toronto will counter with Mark Buehrle (11-7), Drew Hutchison (7-9) and J.A. Happ (8-5) over the three-game set. There should be plenty of power too at the hitter-friendly Rogers Centre, as the Blue Jays and Orioles sit one-two in homers with 134 and 133, respectively. Detroit Tigers (61-48) - First place in AL Central After Baltimore, the Jays welcome to Toronto the team with arguably the best pitching staff in all of basebball. Nike Air Max Discount Uk. Justin Verlander, Max Scherzer and now David Price lead the Tigers starting staff with each having won a Cy Young award over the last three seasons. And then theres the very formidable Anibal Sanchez and Rick Porcello, who have combined for a 21-10 record this season. The Jays will likely have to face Sanchez, Scherzer and Price over the three-game set next weekend. Detroits arms are one thing to worry about, but theyre also one of the best hitting teams in the American League. They are first in team batting average (.277 – 13 points better than the second place Los Angeles Angels), first in on-base percentage (.331) and first in slugging percentage (.435). If the Blue Jays want to be considered a legit playoff contender, taking two of three from the well-rounded Tigers would be a good step. Seattle Mariners (57-54) - Two games behind the Blue Jays for the second Wild Card spot Toronto wraps up this critical stretch out west at Safeco Field against the Mariners, who may sneak into the playoffs with a Wild Card entry, but theyve fallen off as of late, losing six of their last 10. Ace Felix Hernandez may anchor one of the leagues better pitching staffs (they lead the Majors with a 3.05 team ERA), but their hitting has left a lot to be desired. Theyre last in the American League in RBIs with 402 and second last in team batting average with .243. The Jays could possibly put the Mariners away in this series, in a place thats become a home away from home because of all the west coast fans that come down from B.C. for the games. Looking ahead, the Blue Jays will play the Orioles six times, the Mariners four times and the New York Yankees four times over the final two weeks of the season at the end of September.  Those games will undoubtedly determine Torontos season if theyre able to stay in contention until then. But that is then and this is now, and the Blue Jays need to think about taking care of business in the present day. Having said that, how many games will the Jays win over this critical nine-day stretch? As always, its Your! Call. China NFL Jerseys Cheap Nike NFL Jerseys NFL Jerseys Cheap Wholesale NFL Jerseys Cheap Basketball Jerseys Online Stitched Hockey Jerseys Wholesale Baseball Jerseys Football Jerseys Outlet College Jerseys For Sale Cheap MLB Jerseys Wholesale Soccer Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys For Sale Wholesale NFL Jerseys ' ' '
Reply




Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)