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posted on 10-10-2018 at 02:50 AM
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Lightning coach Jon Cooper came to Boston with a plan to steal back the home-ice advantage that the Bruins took away with their Game 1 win in
Now he has bigger goals in mind.
”We can’t exhale Authentic Nathan Shepherd Jersey
,” Cooper said on Thursday, a day after the Lightning beat Boston 4-1 to open a 2-1 lead in the Eastern Conference semifinals. ”Just because we
picked one up on them, we want to make it where we have three chances to knock them out. When you have that chance, you can’t let it slide.”
Since winning the opener, the Bruins have lost two in a row. On Wednesday night, Ondrej Palat scored twice in the first 3:19 of the game to give the
Lightning a lead it never relinquished.
”They outworked us last night, there’s no doubt about it,” Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy said.
Game 4 is Friday night (7 p.m. EDT, NBCSN).
Vegas and San Jose each have a home shutout and a road overtime win through four games of their second-round series. Now it has become a best-of-three
for a spot in the Western Conference Final starting with Game 5 (10 p.m. EDT, NBCSN). The Sharks have turned things around completely from Game 1,
when they were constantly a step behind the speedier Golden Knights in a 7-0 loss.
San Jose has done a much better job limiting Vegas’ chances since then.
”That 7-0 game was not really us out there,” forward Eric Fehr said. ”We changed a lot of things. We came out flat in that game. I think we’ve
done a good job of reeling it in and playing the way we can play. That was a game we just threw in the garbage and turned the page.”
Now the Golden Knights will try to do the same after getting thoroughly outplayed in a 4-0 loss in Game 4.
”It’s a good series, there’s no easy night,” goalie Marc-Andre Fleury said. ”Nobody thought it was going to be an easy series either.
We’re in good shape, 2-2, going home.”
Cassidy fiddled with his lines in practice on Thursday as he tried to find more offense for a team that seemed to have plenty of it in the first-round
series against the Maple Leafs. With Brad Marchand and Jake DeBrusk sitting out of practice – Cassidy said he expects them to play on Friday night
– Danton Heinen skated with Patrice Bergeron and David Pastrnak on the first line and Ryan Donato got time with David Krejci on the second.
After scoring 28 goals in seven games against Toronto and six in the Round 2 opener, Boston was held to a single goal each in back-to-back games.
”We’ll probably tinker,” Cassidy said. ”I’m not going to tell you who’s going in or who’s going out, because we’ve got to get the
healthy guys sorted out first.”
ROOKIES IN THE BOOKS
Lightning forward Anthony Cirelli was the 23rd different rookie to score at least one goal in 56 NHL playoff games this year. That’s already more
than in all of last year’s postseason. The NHL record is 38 in 1981 Tramon Williams Jersey , but over the past 30 years the most was 28, in 1990 and again in ’92.
Boston’s Jake DeBrusk has six this year, leading all rookies. Minnesota North Stars forward Dino Ciccarelli scored 14 goals in ’81, the rookie
record for a postseason. Penguins forward Jake Guentzel scored 13 last year and matched Ciccarelli’s point total.
AP Sports Writer Josh Dubow contributed to this story from San Jose, California.
Although Nick Foles and the Philadelphia Eagles kept him from adding to his fistful of Super Bowl rings last winter, Tom Brady remains the best
quarterback in the NFL, even at age 41.
In the first of the weekly Associated Press position rankings for this season, Brady edged out Aaron Rodgers in voting by 10 AP football writers.
The New England Patriots star received six of the first-place votes in balloting completed before Thursday night's opener between the Eagles and
Falcons in a 10-points-to-one point system. Brady placed second with the other four voters, all of whom had Brady a notch below Green Bay's star
quarterback, for 96 points.
"The Michael Jordan/Wayne Gretzky of pro football, Brady makes everyone around him better," said AP's Barry Wilner, based in New York, who had
Brady No. 1. "That includes receivers, runners, blockers, defenders and special teams. Oh yeah, and coaches. At 41, he's still the guy."
Rodgers Authentic Jake Guentzel Jersey ,
who is coming off a shoulder injury that spoiled both his and the Packers' 2017 season, received 93 points as he finished second on all other ballots
except one, in which he placed third behind Drew Brees of the Saints.
EDITOR'S NOTE 鈥?The Associated Press is ranking the top 10 players at a different position every week of the NFL season, based on the votes and
insights of AP football writers Simmi Buttar, Dave Campbell, Schuyler Dixon, Josh Dubow, Howard Fendrich, Rob Maaddi, Arnie Stapleton, Teresa M.
Walker, Dennis Waszak Jr., and Barry Wilner. This feature will move on Fridays.
"When Rodgers is healthy there's no one more talented in the game," said AP's Josh Dubow, based in the Bay Area. "But he's missed nearly half
the season with injuries twice in the past five years."
Still, Dubow ranked Rodgers, who just signed a four-year, $138 million extension , ahead of Brady Authentic Joe Pavelski Jersey , whom he said "is
showing no signs of slowing down at age 41 after throwing for 505 yards in last season's Super Bowl. If he thrives with this depleted group of
receivers that will be another notch on his quest to be the best QB ever."
Brees was a distant third, followed by Seattle's Russell Wilson and Pittsburgh's Ben Roethlisberger rounding out the top five.
They were followed by Atlanta's Matt Ryan, injured Eagles starter Carson Wentz, who is still recovering from a knee injury that sidelined him in the
Super Bowl, the Chargers' Philip Rivers, Carolina's Cam Newton and Detroit's Matthew Stafford.
Wentz and Rivers were the only quarterbacks to crack the top 10 this season, supplanting the Colts' Andrew Luck and the Raiders' Derek Carr, who
were seventh and eighth, respectively, a year ago.
Others receiving votes were the Texans' DeShaun Watson, the Rams' Jared Goff, Luck, the Giants' Eli Manning, Carr, the 49ers' Jimmy Garoppolo and
Vikings new QB Kirk Cousins, the gem of this year's free agency class .
Receiving a single vote were Washington's new quarterback, veteran Alex Smith, the Buccaneers' Jameis Winston and Colin Kaepernick , the former
49ers QB who hasn't played since 2016 after he sparked the sport's player protests of social injustices by kneeling for the national anthem.
Just like last year Youth Kyzir White Jersey
, Brady and Rodgers easily outdistanced the competition.
Only, this time, Rodgers closed the gap with Brady, who won his third NFL MVP award last season and made it to his record eighth Super Bowl.
The Packers' season fell apart after Rodgers sustained a broken collarbone in Week 6 when he was slammed to the ground by Vikings linebacker Anthony
Rodgers "proved his greatness by his absence to injury last year rather than by his presence," suggested AP's Dave Campbell (based in Minneapolis).
Brady, Campbell said, is "still going strong at age 41, though Father Time will eventually beat Father Tom."
AP's Schuyler Dixon (based in Dallas) also put Rodgers over Brady, calling it "a nod to the not-so-distant future at the position, assuming Brady
doesn't play until he's 60."
Age was irrelevant to AP's Dennis Waszak Jr., based in New York.
"So what that he's 41?" Waszak asked. "The guy still performs like a youngster and remains the QB you want under center with a game on the line.
The cast might change around Brady, but he still delivers."
New York-based Simmi Buttar said Brady's "the G.O.A.T." 鈥?greatest of all time. As for Rodgers, Buttar said he "has only one title, but that has
more to do with the lack of help around him. Though he needs a second Super Bowl for his legacy."
AP's Rob Maaddi, based in Philadelphia, gave Kaepernick the final vote in his top 10.
Kaepernick, he said, "has that talent to be a dynamic top-tier QB if a team gives him the opportunity he deserves."
The former 49ers quarterback is locked in a grievance with the league that accuses owners of colluding to keep him off any roster and is the subject
of Nike's new ad campaign on the 30th anniversary of the iconic "Just Do It" venture.
The highly anticipated spot made its debut during the Eagles' 18-12 season-opening win over Atlanta Thursday night.
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