Kings sweep Blues to advance to Western Conference Final, Devils take 3-1 series lead over Flyers, updates on the other playoff clubs, and the Coyotes reportedly have a deal to keep them in Arizona.
LOS ANGELES TIMES/STLTODAY.COM: The Los Angeles Kings are headed to the Conference Final for the first time since 1993, downing the St. Louis Blues 3-1 to sweep their series. It’s been especially sweet for Dustin Brown and Anze Kopitar, the longest-serving Kings, who’ve suffered through several years of frustration to reach this point.
NJ.COM/PHILLY.COM: The New Jersey Devils downed the Philadelphia Flyers 4-2, taking a 3-1 lead in the series and pushing the Flyers to the brink of elimination. Flyers star forward Claude Giroux might face suspension for a high hit to the head of Devils forward Dainius Zubrus. The Devils have also benefited from the strong play of late-season acquisition Marek Zidlicky, who’s turned his game around after struggling earlier in the season with the Minnesota Wild.
THE TENNESSEAN/ARIZONA REPUBLIC: The Nashville Predators face a daunting task to rally back from a 3-1 series deficit against the Phoenix Coyotes, who’ll be without defenseman Rostislav Klesla, who’s been suspended for Game Five for boarding Predator Matt Halischuk in Game 4. The Coyotes, however, could receive a lift from some good news, as league commissioner Gary Bettman will reportedly announce a tentative deal has been struck with a new ownership group to keep the team in Glendale.
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS/WASHINGTON POST: The New York Rangers hope putting more shots on net will help them break through the defense of the Washington Capitals, as the series momentum appears to have shifted in the latter’s direction. Capitals captain Alexander Ovechkin is not expected to be suspended for a high hit in Game Four on Rangers defenseman Dan Girardi.