Top Line: Stanley Cup Final Game 1 reacts; NHL trade rumors; more links
By Allan Muir
An annotated guide to this morning's must-read hockey stories:
• There are heartbreakers. There are crushing defeats. And then there is the Bruins' 4-3 triple overtime loss to the Blackhawks in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final.
• Eric Duhatschek says that Game 1 was "a purely fascinating study in the art of playoff hockey, all momentum swings and desperation plays, almost two games for the price of one."
• Bruce Arthur's take: the Cup final opener went from a rolling joy to a sliding stalemate to a march into the night, into mystery.
• Here are five things we learned from Game 1.
• The Hawks were so depleted after the victory, writes Ken Campbell, that if you had walked into their dressing room without having watched the game, you would have had no way of knowing whether they had won or lost.
• Forget the buttoned-down defensive style. This was the type of thrilling, up-and-down play that gives hockey a good name.
• Overtime hero Andrew Shaw was the right man in the right place at the right time.
• Mistakes and bad bounces doomed the Bruins in Game 1. Plus, you know, getting outworked by Chicago for about 65 percent of the night.
• There's no update yet on the nature or severity of Nathan Horton's injury, but his departure may already have cost Boston Game 1. Doesn't look good moving forward, either. Hard to believe the Bruins can compensate for his loss with either Tyler Seguin or Jaromir Jagr.
• After blowing their chance to steal Game 1 on the road, the Bruins now are focusing on Game 2.
• Neither the NHL nor NHLPA deserved a Cup final as compelling as this, writes Damien Cox, but the Bruins and Blackhawks delivered a classic, just the same.
• Cam Cole writes that Gary Bettman's annual state of the league address served as a reminder of how fans were played by the league during the lockout.
• If the Flyers sign Mark Streit, it all but ensures that Danny Briere and Ilya Bryzgalov will be bought out.
• Pittsburgh GM Ray Shero says he won't trade goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury, disappointing the dozens of team representatives that are lined up outside his office with progressively larger bags of pucks in tow.
• Did you know that Kent Huskins is the second-best defenseman in the NHL? Yep, there's an advanced statistical analysis model that proves it. Don't feel bad if you don't know who Kent Huskins is. Or if you don't understand why people spend so much time with such lousy numbers.
• Here's a great piece from Deadspin on the North Korean national team at the World Hockey Championships in South Africa. This is some truly crazy stuff.
• Tragic story out of Latvia, where it appears that Oilers prospect Kristians Pelss has passed away. A seventh-round selection in 2010, Pelss split this season between the AHL and ECHL. Our condolences to his family and teammates.
• With the young defender headed into restricted free agency, the St. Louis Blues have to define Alex Pietrangelo as a future franchise defenseman or one who is merely pretty good. After a lackluster 2013 season, that's not an easy call to make. • Is Sergei Fedorov considering returning to the KHL as a player-coach with CSKA?