Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Kings advance to final in West

The Kings’ Mike Richards, top, celebrates his goal in a 6-2 win over the Ducks in Game 7 on Friday.

Associated Press

The Kings’ Mike Richards, top, celebrates his goal in a 6-2 win over the Ducks in Game 7 on Friday.

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Justin Williams, Jeff Carter and Mike Richards scored in an overwhelming first period, and the Kings advanced to their third straight Western Conference final with a 6-2 victory over the Ducks in Game 7 of their semifinal series Friday night.

Anze Kopitar, Marian Gaborik and Tanner Pearson also scored, and Jonathan Quick made 25 saves to help the Kings claim the first postseason freeway series in thrilling style, winning back-to-back elimination games.

The Kings advanced to a conference final rematch with the defending Stanley Cup champion Blackhawks. The series begins Sunday in Chicago.

The Kings improved to 6-0 when facing elimination this spring, shredding rookie goalie John Gibson for four goals in the first 23 minutes in Game 7.

The defeat likely ended the career of the Ducks' Teemu Selanne, 43, who has said this season would be his last.

Rangers respect Habs

The Canadiens can rest easy. They won't be disrespected by their next playoff opponent.

If anything, the Rangers are giving them too much respect heading into today's opener of the Eastern Conference final.

The Canadiens enter following a bitter matchup with the Bruins that concluded with harsh words in the series-ending handshake line.

"I know they went into the Boston series saying that they felt Boston didn't respect them. We respect Montreal quite a bit," Rangers coach Alain Vigneault said after practice Friday before traveling to Montreal for Games 1 and 2.

"They're the favorites. Against Tampa Bay and against Boston, they were the underdogs, they didn't have home ice. Now they're going into this series very likely expected to win. Pressure does funny things to different people. I'm anxious to see how we're going to react. I'm sure they're anxious to see how they're going to act."

Montreal coach Michel Therrien, who replaced Vigneault as Canadiens coach during his first stint with the team in 2000, knows his counterpart well. He didn't engage in a debate over which team is the favorite.

"The favorite? That's a media game," Therrien said. "You go in the New York paper and they're the favorite. You go in the Montreal paper, we're the favorite. I'm not paying too much attention to those things."

Penguins fire GM: The Penguins hired Ray Shero as general manager eight years ago with the mandate to build a roster around two of the game's brightest stars and turn ticker-tape parades through Pittsburgh into an annual rite of spring. Nearly a decade — but just one Stanley Cup later — Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin are on a perennially underachieving team. And Shero is out of a job.

The Penguins fired Shero three days after another early playoff exit, this one a seven-game loss to the Rangers. Coach Dan Bylsma remains in charge at least until Shero's replacement gets a chance to evaluate the organization top to bottom.

"As we looked at this team as a whole, the whole year and not Game 7 (against the Rangers), we don't think we've got a team that's got all the ingredients we'd need to have for a championship team," co-owner Ron Burkle told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. Assistant general manager Jason Botterill will serve as interim general manager.

Lucic not sorry: Bruins forward Milan Lucic said he isn't sorry for saying something that angered the Canadiens' Dale Weise in the handshake line after Montreal won Game 7 on Wednesday. No one involved has repeated what Lucic said. Media reports have said it was "I'm going to (expletive) kill you next year."

Conference semifinals


Kings 4, Ducks 3

Game 1: Kings 3, Ducks 2 OT

Game 2: Kings 3, Ducks 1

Game 3: Ducks 3, Kings 2

Game 4: Ducks 2, Kings 0

Game 5: Ducks 4, Kings 3

Game 6: Kings 2, Ducks 1

Friday: Kings 6, Ducks 2

Blackhawks 4, Wild 2

Conference finals


canadiens vs. rangers

Today: at Montreal, 1, Ch. 8

Rest TBD


blackhawks vs. kings

Sunday: at Chicago, 3, Ch. 8

Rest TBD

Eastern Conference final

Canadiens vs. Rangers

Coaches: Canadiens — Michel Therrien; Rangers — Alain Vigneault

Season series: Montreal 2-1.

Key stats: Montreal defenseman P.K. Subban has a team-high 12 points in the playoffs, taking advantage of power plays with three goals and four assists. … The Rangers are 1-7-2 in their past 10 visits to Montreal. Goalie Henrik Lundqvist has a 13-11-2 career record against the Canadiens and in Montreal is 4-5-2 with a 3.87 goals-against average and .876 save percentage. Lundqvist has not played at the Bell Centre since a 4-3 shootout victory in March 2009. His last regulation victory there was a 5-3 decision in February 2008.

Times wires

Kings advance to final in West 05/16/14 [Last modified: Saturday, May 17, 2014 12:01am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Rowdies settle for draw at home


    ST. PETERSBURG — The good news for the Rowdies is that they still haven't lost a game at Al Lang Stadium since late April. The bad news is they had to settle for a 1-1 tie against Ottawa on Saturday night in front of 6,710 sweaty fans.

  2. Bats come to life, but Rays' freefall continues (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG —The six runs seemed like a ton, just the second time the Rays had scored that many in a game during their numbing two-plus-weeks stretch of offensive impotency, and amazingly, the first time at the Trop in nearly two months.

    Lucas Duda connects for a two-run home run in the sixth, getting the Rays within 7-5. A Logan Morrison home run in the ninth made it 7-6, but Tampa Bay couldn’t complete the comeback.
  3. Rays journal: Cesar Puello, who has one major-league game, claimed off waivers

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Looking to add punch to their right-handed lineup, the Rays claimed OF Cesar Puello off waivers Saturday from the Angels.

  4. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Saturday's Rays-Mariners game

    The Heater

    SS Adeiny Hechavarria doesn't always look like he's going hard, but he showed impressive reactions Saturday in reversing field to catch a ball that clanked off the catwalk then firing to second to double up Guillermo Heredia on an attempt to tag up.

  5. Bucs journal: Simeon Rice gives master class on sacks to defensive ends


    TAMPA — As the Bucs seek their first 10-sack season from a player since Simeon Rice in 2005, who better to help that cause than Rice himself?

    Former Tampa Bay Buccaneers great Simeon Rice works with defensive end Noah Spence (57) after practice at One Buccaneer Place in Tampa, Fla., on Saturday, Aug. 19, 2017.