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Eastern Conference

Lightning Advance To Eastern Conference Final For 3rd Time In 4 Years

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The Tampa Bay Lightning have done something impressive, advancing to the Eastern Conference Final for the third time in four seasons with a 3-1 series clinching win against the Boston Bruins on Sunday.

Tampa Bay is the eighth team in the past 20 years to clinch a berth in the Conference Final three times in a four-season span.

Tampa Bay will now face the the winner of the Pittsburgh Penguins-Washington Capitals second-round series.

“It’s good but it will be gratifying if we win two more series,” Lightning forward Ryan Callahan said (h/t NHL.com). “We’ve been here before so the shock and awe of really getting this far really isn’t there. We are happy with our first two series, but there is so much more work to do and we realize that.”

Tampa Bay will now focus on rest as they await their next round opponent.

“We won four in a row, I don’t think it has anything to do with our mindset other than we got over a hill, we needed to do to beat the Boston Bruins, who I can’t say enough that they’re an exceptional hockey team” Lightning coach Jon Cooper said.

“But it just gives us rest. There’s some banged up bodies in there. That’s what happens when you go through playoff rounds. Anything you get the rest, not only the body but also the mind, it’s huge for us.”

Detroit Red Wings

Red Wings’ Anthony Mantha Out Four To Six Weeks

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The Detroit Red Wings will be without bright spot forward Anthony Mantha, who has developed impressively this season, will miss four to six weeks with a hand injury and will undergo surgery today, according to Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press.

Mantha injured his hand while fighting with Patrik Nemeth of the Colorado Avalanche, a game that resulted in the two-game suspension of Tyler Bertuzzi.

Mantha has picked up 14 points in 27 games this season.

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Eastern Conference

Flyers Hire Chuck Fletcher as General Manager

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The Philadelphia Flyers have announced the hiring of Chuck Fletcher as the team’s new general manager, according to a team announcement on Monday.

Fletcher, who becomes the eighth man to serve as GM in franchise history, will take over for Ron Hextall who was fired back in November.

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Eastern Conference

Devils’ Steven Santini Sent To AHL On Conditioning Loan

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The New Jersey Devils have sent defenseman Steven Santini to the AHL on a conditioning loan as the 23-year old works his way back from a broken jaw, according to NHL.com’s Tom Gulitti.

Santini has played in only one game for New Jersey this season, struggling to catch on as a full-time player for the Devils, and has only played in 76 NHL games during his short career after the Devils selected him with the 42d pick in the 2013 NHL draft.

 

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