Friday, April 13, 2012
Things to know from Thursday's games
By Paul Grant
Oh, this is why we traded for that guy: Martin Havlat missed half the season after coming over last summer in a trade from Minnesota. It's not a deal (for Dany Heatley) that paid dividends early on for the Sharks. But with 28 points in his last 26 playoff games entering these playoffs, the point of it all was for San Jose to gain from his habit of rising to the occasion in the postseason. Um, good start. Havlat's two goals, including 3:34 into double overtime, led San Jose to a 3-2 Game 1 win in St Louis, fortifying his playoff reputation. -- Pierre LeBrun
The night of the Martins: Martin Hanzal did the trick as the Coyotes clipped the Blackhawks 3-2 in OT. Mike Smith stood on his head -- parlance for "he played well" -- as the higher-seeded Coyotes rolled at home. Dog days are not over, thank you very much, Florence.
In other OT news ... The Bruins struck quickly in OT, Chris Kelly firing home the winner with the Zamboni sauce still drying. Tim Thomas was sold for the B's in a duel with Braden Holtby, whom Thomas praised. Good to see Thomas return to pumping tires again.
Meanwhile, in Gotham: The Rangers, completely disregarding talk that they might be upset, wiped the rink with the Senators in a 4-2 win. Score was closer than the game indicated, blah-blah-blah. Don't be surprised if the Senators bounce back with a big game Saturday night. The NHL playoffs are funny like that.