One half of the Stanley Cup Finals dance card has been filled out, as the Vancouver Canucks wrapped up their series with San Jose in bizarre fashion late last night. Over in the East, the Boston Bruins have that same opportunity tonight, as they face Tampa Bay in Game 6 while holding a 3-2 lead.
Follow after the jump for reaction from both the Vancouver and San Jose sides, and the rest of your morning hockey notes...
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Nashville Predators News
Paul McCann - No Tuesday Announcement? Hmmmm...
Paul calls out the Globe & Mail's Stephen Brunt for his premature reporting of the Thrashers-to-Winnipeg deal as "done" a few days ago. A seasoned journalist knows exactly what he's doing when using declarative language like that, and Brunt apparently got ahead of the facts.
Top 15 moments of the 2010-11 Preds season: #10 | Section 303
When Leggy swatted the Blue Jackets...
The View from 111: Does the NHL's Business Model Work?
Mark looks around the league and wonders if the overall model is broken. I say no, it's just designed to look that way at the local level. Not there aren't some teams in big trouble (the Islanders, Blue Jackets, Coyotes, Thrashers and Panthers come to mind).
Predators get particular when it comes to addition of minor league defenseman - Nashville City Paper
It turns out there's a sinister reason why the Preds had such an interest in Victor Bartley.
Country music star Dierks Bentley jumps into hockey with both boots - ESPN
The most famous member of the Upper C league at Centennial Sportplex had one of his songs picked up in commercials for the Stanley Cup playoffs.
Around the NHL
Game 5 Report Card ; Wish You Were Here - Nucks Misconduct
They're going bonkers in Vancouver, where a late goal in regulation sent the game to overtime, and an odd (and I mean really odd) goal by Kevin Bieksa in the second extra period sent the Canucks back to the Stanley Cup Finals for the first time since 1994. Somebody update the prediction tracker, I had Vancouver in 5!
Dwayne Roloson gets the start in net for Tampa Bay Lightning in Game 6; Bergenheim questionable - Lightning Strikes
It's back to Rollie the Goalie for Tampa Bay.
Cowardly Bettman ignoring evidence of Thrashers fans | Jeff Schultz
I can't blame folks in Atlanta for feeling bitter, not one bit.
Atlanta Mayor on losing Thrashers: "We will get through it" - Houses of the Hockey
Yeah, this guy doesn't sound like he's going to miss the NHL.
Why yes, Winnipeg is excited for the NHL, why do you ask? - Puck Daddy
Meanwhile, the champagne is on ice in Manitoba.
CBCSports.ca - Canadian division could get a push, plus 30 thoughts
Elliotte Friedman notes that as they take a year to consider division realignment, lots of options could be on the table.
Stunning Numbers: Power failures, penalty magnets in NHL playoffs - Puck Daddy
Jordin Tootoo was at his agitating best during these playoffs.
Blackhawks great Stan Mikita diagnosed with tongue cancer - The Globe and Mail
Our best wishes go out to the Hall of Famer.
Sweden’s Coaching Closing the Gap - The Goalie Guild
Some insight here on the rise of Swedish goaltending over the last several years, and what the future holds.
What To Wear: NHL Awards | Play Money
Attention, Buddy Oakes... Tip #1 is for you, pal.
Blues Prospect Tarasenko Chooses Sibir, KHL for 2011-12 Over NHL | Hockey Independent
Vladimir Tarasenko is a tantalizing prospect, but he won't be coming to St. Louis any time soon.
What, no Jagr? Agent says Jaromir only talking to KHL teams - Puck Daddy
Yeah, this isn't so surprising. Forget all that speculation about an NHL comeback.
The Wonderful World Of Doc Emrick's Vocabulary - The Copper & Blue
Parsing the senior play-by-play man's call can be, well, a laborious undertaking for sure.