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NHL News and Notes May - 9

NHL News and Notes May - 9

Hockey Today - May 9
Wed, May 9, 2007
By Associated Press

No games scheduled. Ottawa opens the Eastern Conference finals at Buffalo on Thursday.


Detroit and Anaheim will meet in the playoffs for the fourth time. The first three all ended in four games. The Red Wings swept the Ducks in the Western semifinals in 1997 and again in the 1999 quarterfinals before losing four straight to Anaheim in the first round in 2003.


Buffalo and Ottawa will face each other for the second straight postseason starting Thursday night. The Sabres eliminated the Senators in five games in last year''s semifinals, with three of the wins coming in overtime.


New Jersey center Scott Gomez said Tuesday he intends to test the market when he becomes an unrestricted free agent in July. The 27-year-old center collected 13 goals and 47 assists in the regular season, and four goals and 10 assists in the postseason. He went to arbitration last summer and was awarded a one-year, $5 million deal.


Brendan Shanahan is leaning toward returning for a 20th NHL season, and wants to stay with the New York Rangers. Shanahan can become an unrestricted free agent for the second straight summer. A year ago, the Rangers lured him away from Detroit with a one-year, $4 million deal.


The New York Islanders rewarded third-string goalie Wade Dubielewicz for leading the team''s final-week surge to the playoffs by signing him to a one-year, $500,000 contract on Tuesday.


''It will take until next May, when we get to the same point, and then you''ve got to crash through the glass ceiling, or whatever this boundary is.'''' - San Jose coach Ron Wilson, a day after the Sharks'' season ended with a 2-0 loss to Detroit in Game 6 of the Western Conference semifinals.

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Re: NHL News and Notes May - 9

Sabres LW Hecht leaves practice early
Tue, May 8, 2007
By Associated Press

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Buffalo Sabres forward Jochen Hecht left practice early Tuesday because of what coach Lindy Ruff said was a groin injury.

Hecht went to the locker room about 20 minutes before practice ended for precautionary reasons. He is expected to play when Buffalo opens the Eastern Conference finals against Ottawa on Thursday.

''He'll be fine,'' Ruff said. ''We didn't want to take any chances. The ice was getting pretty bad.''

Hecht scored twice, including the winner, in the victory that clinched Buffalo's second-round series over the New York Rangers on Sunday. The win gave the Sabres a berth in the conference finals for the second straight year.

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