Truth & Rumors > NHL

In St. Louis, 'the cavalry is coming'

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07:40 AM ET 04.16 | A first-round series between a pair of Western Conference rivals awaits, and, for St. Louis, the timing couldn't be better. Listen closely and you can almost hear the thumping of the horses' hooves coming over the hillside. "The cavalry is coming," Blues forward Brenden Morrow said. Morrow, who was in a walking boot just a few days ago, was a surprise skater in Tuesday's practice, but he wasn't the only one making progress toward playing in Game 1, or least at some point in the series. T.J. Oshie returned to the ice four days after taking a vicious head hit in Minnesota, Vladimir Tarasenko has shed the cast on his right hand and was firing off a series of shots and defensemen Alex Pietrangelo and Barret Jackman were back after missing Sunday's regular-season finale against Detroit.

St. Louis Post-Dispatch

T.J. Oshie, Getty Images T.J. Oshie, Getty Images

The Ducks have a goalie problem

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2500
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35

07:58 AM ET 04.15 | Less than a month ago, Jonas Hiller was a man gearing up for what was a nearly guaranteed playoff appearance as Anaheim's starting goalie. After a few poor starts got him benched to end the regular season, Hiller now appears to be the top-seeded Ducks' last resort in net in the first round. ... [Hiller] realizes he'll likely watch one of Anaheim's two rookie goalies make his playoff debut at Honda Center on Wednesday. Frederik Andersen and John Gibson have 31 combined games of NHL experience, but they've both seized the opportunity created by Hiller's minor slump. Hiller is still featured prominently on the wallpaper on the Ducks' website, but that might be the only place Anaheim fans can see the soon-to-be free agent in uniform again unless the rookies falter.

TSN.ca

Jonas Hiller, Getty Images Jonas Hiller, Getty Images

Lundqvist admits contract hurt him

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2991
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37

07:57 AM ET 04.15 | What a difference a few months makes in the kingdom of Henrik Lundqvist. [In] fact, it is hard to believe he is the same person who struggled through the first three months of the year, a period in which he was benched a couple of times as he sought to deal with myriad issues, including stalled contract talks that went into December. ... "Early in the season there were a couple of distractions. I'm not going to lie -- the contract played a part," said Lundqvist, who signed a seven-year, $59.5 million extension on Dec. 4 after also dealing with an early-season injury that remains unidentified. "When you add everything together, it was not perfect. It was the most challenging part of my entire career." Lundqvist steadied himself over the Christmas break.

New York Post

Henrik Lundqvist, Icon Sports Henrik Lundqvist, Icon Sports

For Hertl, beating L.A. is personal

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3577
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46

07:57 AM ET 04.15 | Sharks rookie Tomas Hertl may have missed games this season, but his attitude is more than ready for the second season. For Hertl, whose season was derailed by Dustin Brown's knee on Dec. 19, "It's personal. It's L.A." Through his improving English, Hertl said he was ready for his first taste of playoff hockey after suiting up for the final two regular season games against Colorado and Phoenix over the weekend. "Oh yeah. For me, it's more motivation because [it's] L.A. ... I want to beat L.A." The 20-year-old is aware that the intensity of an NHL playoff game is ratcheted up a few notches from the regular season. "More physical, more speed. For me, it's the first time. It's playoff time, and I hope it's good and I am ready."

CSN Bay Area

Tomas Hertl, Icon Sports Tomas Hertl, Icon Sports

Bruins can't count on shut-down D

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3630
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62

07:56 AM ET 04.15 | On the upside, Bruins defenseman Dennis Seidenberg did skate Monday at TD Garden, and he remains ahead of schedule in his recovery from ACL and MCL surgery. [But] Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli cautioned against expecting Seidenberg to return at some point during the playoffs. The B's have not ruled out a postseason return for Seidenberg, however, after initially declaring him out for the season at the time of his injury in late December. "We're not counting on Dennis to be back," Chiarelli said Monday. "We're going to be very cautious with his injury. He has been skating and that's pretty much all I can say on it." Adam McQuaid also skated Monday in his comeback from a quad strain that limited to 30 games this season.

WEEI.com

Dennis Seidenberg, Icon Sports Dennis Seidenberg, Icon Sports

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