The Nation Notebook: Wild in tough, Snow's security, and KHL shenanigans

Christian Pagnani
April 17 2017 07:00AM

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The Nation Network Notebook is a regular feature that rounds up interesting news, stories, and rumours from around the NHL that don’t quite deserve their own article. 

The playoffs have begun! The Blues have taken a 3-0 in their series against the Wild. The NHL says Garth Snow is doing okay. Matt Calvert gets a game off for his cross-check. One KHL team might be doing whatever it takes to win.

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Goalies and the Playoffs Part 3: How to Win a Series

Joel Short
April 16 2017 10:30AM

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© Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports

We know that goalie performance is a major factor to playoff success. I wanted to get a better sense of just how big a factor it is, so I looked at shot volume and Sv% for every best of 7 playoff series since 1984. (I excluded the first round for 84 to 86, since it was then a best of 5.) 

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NHL First Round Preview: Chicago Blackhawks vs. Nashville Predators

Megan Kim
April 13 2017 01:04PM

This is part of a playoff preview series based at NHLNumbers.com

While some of the playoff landscape is not quite what we've been used to -- welcome back, Leafs and Oilers -- we're at least in familiar territory with the Central Division. Stop me if you've heard this before: The Chicago Blackhawks coasted to a first place finish in the Central (and the Western Conference) and will face the second wild card in the first round. This year, the second wild card happens to be the Nashville Predators.

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NHL First Round Playoff Preview: Washington Capitals vs. Toronto Maple Leafs

Scott Maxwell
April 13 2017 10:16AM

Here ye, here ye, let me tell you the tale of David and Goliath. In the words of the ancient prophet who hails from Toronto, Drake, the Toronto Maple Leafs "started from the bottom, now we here". The Maple Leafs finished in last place, and despite upgrading their goaltending and goal scoring, with those being their biggest problems in their last place finish, many still picked the Leafs to finish bottom five. However, they proved everyone wrong (except Jeff Veillette), on route to their best season in the cap era, thanks to young rookies Auston Matthews, Mitch Marner, and William Nylander.

Meanwhile, the Washington Capitals had another Goliath season, with their second consecutive Presidents trophy. And as if the team wasn't good enough, they added Kevin Shattenkirk at the deadline to an already stacked team. They had a slight bump after that, but are red hot going into the post season to face the inexperienced Maple Leafs.

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NHL First Round Playoff Preview: Calgary Flames vs. Anaheim Ducks

Adam Laskaris
April 13 2017 08:00AM

The Flames and the Ducks! What a classic matchup! Right? Right?!

The Calgary Flames come in featuring a lineup of Johnny Gaudreau, Sean Monahan, and "18-year-old" Sam Bennett, while the Anaheim Ducks sport an older contingent of Ryan Getzlaf, Ryan Kesler, and Corey Perry as their core trio. 

While neither team gets their rival matchup in Edmonton and San Jose, the teams get to fight it out against one another in a season where both teams were quite uncertain of their expectations going into it.

The teams have no playoff history in recent times as they haven't played since 2005-06, when the Ducks were still going by the "Mighty" moniker. The Ducks won that series in seven games, that also took place in the first round. The Ducks lost to the Oilers, who then made it all the way to Game Seven of the Stanley Cup Finals. I'm not sure what happened, but I don't think they've won the Cup since 1990.

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