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13/02/2019

o support the team, we want to send people home happy,

PITTSBURGH -- The NHLs most unlikely post-season success story is nearly bald, his hairline an unwitting casualty to three decades spent hidden under a goaltenders mask. Air Max 720 Cheap China . All those long winters -- including 16 in the best league in the world -- never led to long springs, however, for Tomas Vokoun. Until now. Halfway through the 2013 Stanley Cup playoffs the two-time All-Star turned journeyman backup holds the key to the Pittsburgh Penguins playoff hopes. He is, for the first time in his life, the "hot goalie" during the most important time of year. Heading into Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals against the Boston Bruins Saturday night, Vokouns numbers appear to be a misprint. Seven starts. Six wins. One very stoic and largely anonymous presence at the back of Pittsburghs star-laden attack. Given a week to ponder his remarkable run after taking over for struggling Marc-Andre Fleury in Game 5 of the first-round series against the New York Islanders, Vokoun insists hes trying not to think about what it all means, with varying levels of success. "You just know that youre playing well, youre trying to do the right things," Vokoun said. "You try not to treat it any differently, even if you know the stakes are just getting bigger." Its a phenomenon unique to goaltenders this time of year. For all the talk about the importance of playoff experience, the guys in the back of the net can sometimes seem immune to the pressure. Vokoun never played on a team that made it past the opening round of the post-season until Pittsburgh ousted the Islanders in six games three weeks ago. He was hardly overcome by the stage in the second round against Ottawa, allowing all of 11 goals in five games, including a pair of of meaningless scores after the Penguins already had things well in hand during Game 4 and 5 routs. NHL history is littered with callow goalies who have ended up lifting the Cup. Martin Brodeur was 22. Patrick Roy was 20. Ken Dryden was 23. Jonathan Quick was 4-8 in the playoffs before going 16-4 and leading the Los Angeles Kings to the championship at 26. Vokoun is at the opposite end of his career but enjoying the same kind of coming-out party. Its uncharted territory for a player acquired for a mere seventh-round pick last summer as an insurance plan should Fleury falter. "He has been one of the better goalies in NHL," Pittsburgh general manager Ray Shero said. "He just happened to be playing in Nashville and Florida, not in the media spotlight." One thats certainly going to ratchet up over the next two weeks. It can get unnerving. For proof, he need only look 180 feet down the ice on Saturday night at Bostons Tuukka Rask. The Bruins were on the cusp of a berth in the conference finals in 2010 with a 22-year-old Rask leading the way. Boston took a 3-0 lead over Philadelphia in the second round when the season suddenly imploded. A 5-4 overtime loss in Game 4 morphed into three more defeats, including a 4-3 collapse in Game 7 when Rask squandered a three-goal, first-period lead. Though he played 29 games the following season, he didnt see a second of ice time in the playoffs as Tim Thomas carried the Bruins to their first title in nearly four decades. "Its different if youre playing or if youre not," he said. "You had something to do with it on the ice." Rasks role (and his view) will be much more involved this time around. And Boston coach Claude Julien thinks Rask may have turned a corner of sorts in the second round against the New York Rangers. Boston bolted to a 3-0 lead once again and went up 2-0 early in Game 4. The Rangers recovered -- thanks in part to a curious goal in which Rask appeared to screw himself into the ice -- to win in overtime. Rask bounced back in Game 5, turning aside 28 of 29 shots as the Bruins moved on and perhaps obliterated any lingering doubts about their goaltenders resilience. "That Game 4 couldve been a lot more devastating than it was," coach Claude Julien said. "How he rebounded in Game 5 shows me that theres no issues there." Of course, the high-flying Penguins have a way of creating issues. Pittsburgh peppering Evgeni Nabokhov and Craig Anderson into early exits a combined four times during the first two rounds while averaging 4.27 goals per game, the highest scoring average at this point in the playoffs in 20 years. A highly efficient power play and a remarkably skilled roster led by former MVPs Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin helps. Still, for all its considerable firepower, Pittsburgh is not invulnerable. The Penguins were similarly loaded three years ago when they ran into Montreals unheralded Jaroslav Halak in the second round. The then-24-year-old became impenetrable as the series wore on and the Canadiens won in seven games. The memory of that stunning failure remains fresh and the Penguins are well aware Rask and Bostons smothering defence could provide an even more impenetrable shell. "We have to make (Rask) uncomfortable," Pittsburgh coach Dan Bylsma said. In the end, whichever goaltender finds his comfort zone is the one that will extend his teams season into the first days of summer. Its a ride Vokoun is intent on enjoying, one the oldest player on the Stanley Cup favourite thought may never come. "This is what you play for," he said. "Its taken a long time to get here. Yeah theres pressure but really its just about doing your job. "Thats all I can do." So far, so good. Air Max 720 Cheap Wholesale Air Max 720 Wholesale Free Shipping .Y. -- Jayna Hefford scored the winning goal Friday as Canada survived a scare with a 4-3 win over Sweden at the Four Nations womens hockey tournament. http://www.airmax720outletcheap.com/ . -- Peyton Manning will have all of his wide receivers available for the first time in a month when the Denver Broncos begin their playoff run Jan.Garry Monk says his Leeds team are determined to prove they are among the big hitters of the Sky Bet Championship by defeating leaders Newcastle in Sundays mouth-watering lunchtime showdown, live on Sky Sports 1. Newcastle are thriving under Rafael Benitez and have won their last seven in the league, as they bid to make an immediate return to the top flight.But Leeds are also better placed than they have been for a while, three wins in a row having taken them into promotion contention themselves. Leeds vs Newcastle November 20, 2016, 1:00pm Live on Get Sky Sports Get a Sky Sports pass And former Swansea boss Monk thinks a packed Elland Road will witness another positive display from his side on Sunday.On paper this will be the toughest test of the season, said Monk. Newcastle are top of the league, which means they have been the best team so far.They have high calibre players and a high calibre manager, they have the most expensive team in the league, so you wwould expect them to be where they are. Air Max 720 Sale Cheap. Our approach is no different, our job is to give 100 per cent and try and put our best football on the pitch, and we know that, when we do that, we can fight for a result.We have a capacity crowd ready to support the team, we want to send people home happy, and we are going out there determined to win the game. The goals have been flowing this season for Dwight Gayle and Newcastle A Champions League winner with Liverpool and a former Real Madrid boss, Benitez has been part of some huge club occasions but he admitted he was looking forward to Sunday.It will be a massive game for everybody, said Benitez.But its the kind of game you want to play. Garry Monk is a good young manager who is growing and will get better in the future.The atmosphere in training has been fantastic, everyone has been working hard. Im really pleased with everyone.Upgrade to Sky Sports now to watch Man Utd v Arsenal this Saturday and get the first six months half price! Also See: How good are Newcastle? Pruttons predictions Perez wins EFL goal of the month Derby revert to Pride Park Cheap Hoodies From China Discount NFL Shirts Cheap NFL Jerseys Authentic Cheap NFL Jerseys China Wholesale China Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys From China Cheap Jerseys Cheap Jerseys Fast Shipping China Jerseys Stitched Jerseys ' ' '

20/09/2019

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