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Updated: Strader's Blog for May 19th

Thursday, 05.11.2006 / 12:00 AM / News
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Updated: Strader\'s Blog for May 19th

Hello to South Florida from Southern California!!

My latest playoff journey brings me to the left coast for the start of the Western Conference finals between the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim and the Edmonton Oilers. I'll be covering this series on NHL Radio with my former ESPN partner Darren Pang (for those of you with XM Radio, you can tune in on channel 204). We had a "warmup" game in the second round as we called Game 5 of the Edmonton-San Jose series at the Shark Tank. I believe it was the first time I had done play-by-play of a hockey game on radio since my last game as the voice of the Adirondack Red Wings of the American Hockey League back in April of 1985! It was an interesting experience and I remembered right away how different it is to call a game on radio. It's a challenge to be the eyes and ears of the audience in describing all the action. No wonder Goldie and Red Deer Randy have so much fun!

Both conference finals should be great hockey to watch and very difficult to predict the outcome. The Oilers have the only number one goalie, Dwayne Roloson, who has played in a conference final. He was with the Wild in '03 when they lost in the conference finals to Anaheim. The other three teams each have rookies in net: Cam Ward (Carolina), Ryan Miller (Buffalo), and Ilya Bryzgalov (Anaheim). The Ducks current backup, J.S. Giguere, led Anaheim all the way to Game 7 of the Staney Cup Finals in '03 before losing to the Devils. It's interesting that two of the teams started these playoffs with a different number one goalie: Martin Gerber was the man in Carolina until he lost the first two games of round one to Montreal and J.S. Giguere was replaced by Bryzgalov for Games 5 & 6 of the opening series vs. Calgary.

In the west, the Oilers have beaten the top seed Red Wings and then dispatched the top remaining seed in the second round, San Jose. I think Chris Pronger has been the most dominant non-goalie in these playoffs. But the Ducks have beaten the Calgary Flames (the team everyone said was the most feared in a seven game series) and completely dominated a very good Colorado team. I'm picking the Ducks in a long series. Their young players: Perry, Penner, Getzlaf, Lupul, Beauchemin, Kunitz and Bryzgalov have been terrific.

In the east, the Sabres beat the top seed Senators while the Hurricanes disposed of a Devils team that had won 15 straight. Carolina is one of the few teams that can match Buffalo's quickness, so I'm picking the Canes in another long series.

If I'm right, that sets up a matchup between the '02 Finals loser (Carolina) an the '03 Finals loser (Anaheim). If that happens...I'll take the Ducks in 6.

I'll "talk" to you all again from Edmonton.

SCHEDULE

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 TBL 48 30 14 4 156 127 64
2 NYI 46 31 14 1 151 129 63
3 DET 47 27 11 9 139 119 63
4 MTL 45 29 13 3 123 106 61
5 PIT 46 26 12 8 138 117 60
6 NYR 44 27 13 4 134 106 58
7 WSH 46 24 13 9 137 120 57
8 BOS 48 25 16 7 126 121 57
9 FLA 44 20 14 10 107 122 50
10 OTT 46 19 18 9 126 128 47
11 TOR 48 22 23 3 142 150 47
12 PHI 48 19 22 7 130 146 45
13 CBJ 45 20 22 3 113 142 43
14 NJD 47 17 22 8 107 134 42
15 CAR 46 16 25 5 98 120 37
16 BUF 47 14 30 3 89 167 31

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
N. Bjugstad 44 15 12 1 27
J. Huberdeau 41 8 17 1 25
A. Ekblad 44 6 19 7 25
J. Jokinen 43 4 20 0 24
J. Hayes 36 13 7 1 20
B. Boyes 42 9 11 1 20
S. Bergenheim 33 7 9 4 16
T. Fleischmann 38 5 8 9 13
V. Trocheck 28 4 9 6 13
D. Kulikov 39 1 12 -2 13
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
R. Luongo 17 10 8 .923 2.32
A. Montoya 3 4 2 .887 3.09
 
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