By Brian Rauf, Chat Sports
The second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs continued Thursday with the Washington Capitals grabbing a 4–3 overtime win over the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 1 of the series. Both Western Conference semifinal series start Friday night.
Check out the latest NHL news and rumors below.
• Tampa Bay Lightning forward Steven Stamkos is “close to game shape,” but a return could be weeks or months away, reports ESPN’s Joe McDonald.
• Capitals forward Tom Wilson’s knee-to-knee hit on Penguins forward Conor Sheary will be reviewed by the NHL Department of Player Safety, reports the Associated Press.
• New York Islanders defenseman Ryan Pulock could return from an upper-body injury for Game 3, reports Newsday’s Arthur Staple.
• The Philadelphia Flyers are not looking to trade goalies Steve Mason and Michal Neuvirth, reports CSN Philly’s Jeff Neiburg.
• Minnesota Wild general manager Chuck Fletcher said the team hasn’t decided on potentially buying out Thomas Vanek, reports the Star Tribune’s Michael Russo.
• The NHL and NHLPA have agreed on rules for a potential expansion draft, reports TSN’s Gary Lawless.
• Anaheim Ducks forward Ryan Kesler, Boston Bruins forward Patrice Bergeron and Los Angeles Kings forward Anze Kopitar were named the three finalists for the Selke Trophy, the NHL announced.