Andy McDonald and Chris Kunitz each had three points in one period during Anaheim's 5-1 rout of Vancouver in Game 1 of the Western Conference semifinals. That tied a club record for points in a period. . . .
each had three points in one period during Anaheim's 5-1 rout of Vancouver in Game 1 of the Western Conference semifinals. That tied a club record for points in a period. . . .
Calgary coach Jim Playfair didn't get a vote of confidence from GM Darryl Sutter this week during the Flames' end-of-season news conference. "I'm not going to say we had a great year, and I'm not going to say we had a bad year. I think it's OK," Sutter said. "The philosophy of this organization since I came here is OK is not OK." . . .
Look for the Flyers to re-sign goalie Antero Niittymaki. Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren said agent Larry Kelly is no longer looking to place his client in Europe but to re-sign him with the Flyers. . . .
Tampa Bay has cap problems (again) next season and might have to move Brad Richards. The Flyers won't bite on Richards, but would if it were Vinny Lecavalier (no way). . . .
Devils goalie Marty Brodeur gave up four goals in the first period of their series opening 5-3 loss against Ottawa. Last time he did that was April 28, 2001, in the third period of a 6-5 overtime win against Toronto. "It was a like a snowball for [Ottawa]," Brodeur said of this latest game. "They just kept on touching everything and putting it in the net." . . .
Brotherly matchups in the Western Conference semifinals: Anaheim's Scott and Rob Niedermayer against Vancouver's Henrik and Daniel Sedin. The last time a pair of brothers faced a pair on another team in a playoff series was in 1986, when Quebec's Anton and Peter Stastny met Hartford's Dave and Wayne Babych in an opening-round series won by the Whalers in a three-game sweep. The Flyers have some history here, as well. In 1985, it was Rich and Ron Sutter vs. the Rangers' James and Steve Patrick, followed by Rich and Ron Sutter vs. Quebec's Peter and Marian Stastny, although the latter did not play . . . Vancouver and Anaheim have never met in the postseason. This is the first time that two West Coast clubs have met in an all-Pacific-time-zone series since 1993, when Los Angeles defeated Vancouver, four games to two, in a second-round series . . . Will the Minnesota Wild be financially able to re-sign goalie Niklas Backstrom, who led the NHL with a 1.97 goals-against average this season? They are paying Manny Fernandez $4.3 million on a three-year, $13 million contract. The Wild already have $31 million committed against the salary cap for next season. "It's been a fun year here, and I enjoyed every moment," Backstrom said after the Wild were eliminated. "Either way, there are a lot of big contracts here on this hockey club, and there's definitely going to have to be choices made." . . . Best wishes go out to Bill Seiberlich, a goal judge at Flyers games, who underwent quadruple bypass surgery this week at Pennsylvania Hospital . . . Finally, Peter Forsberg turned down his Swedish invitation to the IIHF World Championships, admitting his physical problems are an issue. Forsberg struggled with Nashville and we suspect his right foot was the culprit given how many times he fell on the ice. His foot led to a ghastly turnover that cost the Predators a game in the San Jose series. In retrospect, the Flyers seemed to have done very well trading him at the deadline for Scottie Upshall and Ryan Parent. Upshall will be playing on a top line for the Flyers next fall; Parent will likely be on the blue line for the Phantoms. As for Forsberg, he admits it's questionable he'll even play hockey.