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NA Juniors Playoff Game Night: 3-24-13

Ontario Hockey League

(W5)Sudbury Wolves 5 @ (W4)Brampton Battalion 4
Best-of-7 Western Conference Quarterfinals tied, 1-1

D Dylan Blujus, BRAM: 0-1-1, +1, 2 PIM
Playoff totals: 2 GP 1-1-2, +3, 2 PIM
Season totals: 68 GP, 2-27-29, -8, 57 PIM

Blujus had a point for the second straight night, but Brampton fell at home to Sudbury despite outshooting the Wolves 34-17. Going back to the regular season, Blujus has a goal and five assists in his last five games. Game 3 is Tuesday in Sudbury.

(W5)Guelph Storm 0 @ (W4)Kitchener Rangers 2
Kitchener leads best-of-7 Western Conference Quarterfinals, 2-0

C/W Tanner Richard, GUE: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM
Playoff totals: 2 GP, 0-1-1, -1, 0 PIM
Season totals: 52 GP, 11-51-62, +18, 94 PIM

American WJC hero John Gibson (Ducks) stopped all 49 shots he faced, easily earning first star honors in the Rangers’ 2-0 Game 2 win on Sunday. The teams will make the short drive to Guelph for Game 3 on Tuesday.

KHL Playoff Game Day: 3-24-13

KHL Playoffs (Russia):

Eastern Conference Finals
(1)Kazan 3 vs. (3)Chelyabinsk 1
Kazan Leads the Series 2-0
Nikita Nesterov, Chelyabinsk, DNP
Playoff totals: 8 GP, 0-2-2, E, 6 PIM
Regular season totals (KHL): 35 GP, 0-1-1, +6, 14 PIM
Regular season totals (MHL): 2 GP, 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM

Kazan got helpers from ex-NHLers Alexei Morozov and Niko Kapanen in Kazan's 3-1 Game Two victory over Traktor Chelyabinsk. Ex-NHLer Jan Bulis had Traktor's only goal in the match. Game Three is Wednesday.

Cooper Not the Bearer of Boucher's Sins

You saw it coming.

Nine of 10 Magic 8-Balls agreed all signs pointed to Guy Boucher being out as Lightning coach in the immediate or near future.

When the biggest positive for a struggling team out of a two-game trip to Ontario is “the team responds well to 4-0 deficits,” there’s a problem. Lightning General Manager Steve Yzerman knew it and was obviously tired of it.

And it started well in advance of Saturday’s debacle to an undermanned Ottawa team; a game for which Boucher’s staff had two days to prepare.

TSN’s Bob McKenzie tweeted there was a “culture” problem in Tampa, which is damning to any coach in any league.

Combine the two and it was a near no-brainer.

Yzerman Relieves Boucher of Duties

TAMPA BAY - The Tampa Bay Lightning have released Guy Boucher from his head coaching commitment, effective immediately, vice president and general manager Steve Yzerman announced this morning.

Yzerman also announced that Martin Raymond and Dan Lacroix will share coaching responsibilities for the game tonight against the Winnipeg Jets.

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