Whether playing a team outside the
He's taking the season in seven-game slices — "The Pope would be in town and it would still be like Game 4 of our segment," Hartley said — and he's not altering his message to a team that has so far exceeded expectations.
"It's not time to start singing a different tune to our guys. We don't change a thing," he said last week. "What I like about our team, what I'm very impressed about our players is I don't feel an ounce of pressure or an ounce of nervousness. They're a bunch of kids going to the circus and they're having fun."
Break out the peanuts and cotton candy. The Flames are third in the
Hartley, who coached Colorado to the
It's working: The Flames have "won" or broken even in every segment except a 0-6-1 slide in December. "But credit to our players, they never gave back and next segment we cranked it up," Hartley said. "We forgot about it and we've been good."
Good enough, probably, to bring their circus to the playoffs for the first time since 2009.
A model of consistency this season, the Nashville Predators didn't lose two straight games in regulation until late February and have been vying for first overall. But their first stumble has been a big one.
Unable to protect a 2-0 lead they carried into the third period Sunday against the Ducks, they were stung by a 4-2 loss that extended their slide to 2-8 and left them third in the West. "You get excited for these ones," goaltender
The Predators' offense has slowed; they've been outscored, 30-17, the last 10 games. "It's both ways. We're also giving up a lot. That's not a good combination when you don't score and give up goals," Rinne said. "Our game is not that bad. It's just the results. It's the little details that are biting us and you've got to take care of your own end first."
This won't end well
Owner Hasso Plattner, Wilson and Thornton have spoken and have a working relationship, the Mercury News reported, but the topic is sure to be raised during the Sharks' trip to Canada this week and distract from their already doubtful playoff quest. Matters could be resolved this summer; it will be easier to part ways with Wilson than with Thornton, who has a no-trade clause in a contract that runs through the 2016-17 season.
General managers began three days of meetings in Boca Raton, Fla., on Monday by discussing three-on-three overtime if four-on-four doesn't produce a winner. The
Hockey Vision Las Vegas, the group exploring interest in an NHL team there, said Monday it was within 1,000 of its goal of 10,000 season-ticket deposits. ... The Arizona