Postgame quotes; playoff standings update

Is it possible the European Leagues are, after all this time, still underrated by NHL scouts? Jonathan Bernier (remember him?) was supposed to be the Kings’ goalie of the future, but he’s been in the minors since October. Meanwhile, Swedish goalie Erik Ersberg is playing out of his mind for the Kings, giving them the stability they’ve needed at the position all season. Of course, for the Kings, Ersberg has arrived about five months too late.

And then there’s Jonas Hiller.
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Say hello to fourth place.

Good news, Ducks fans: Your team is three points ahead of the Stars after beating them in Dallas, which is big because it proves you can beat the Stars in Dallas. That literally hasn’t happened all season. The bad news: Jeremy Roenick fooled Nicholas Backstrom tonight during a shootout in Minnesota, giving the Sharks a victory, two more points in the standings, and a near-lock on second place in the Western Conference. That’s almost assured if the Ducks lose in San Jose on Friday; even if the Ducks win it’ll be hard to make up three points on a hot team with only six games left in the season.

Translation: Say hello to fourth place in the West and a first-round Stanley Cup playoff series with Dallas that begins at Honda Center, second week of April. 

Hey, it sure beats fifth place!

Give him an ‘A’.

Just noticed that Scott Niedermayer officially has an ‘A’ on his jersey for the Dallas game. That’s because of captain Chris Pronger’s suspension. No one will wear the captain’s ‘C’ until Pronger comes back for the regular-season finale. In the meantime, Niedermayer (last year’s captain), Chris Kunitz and Rob Niedermayer will wear the alternate captain ‘A’s.

Flukiest 5-goal game ever; playoff standings update.

In my second-half-of-the-season preview, I wrote that it’s easier to divide this season into three parts:

1. “Ducks 1.0”: pre-Scott Niedermayer, pre-Doug Weight.
2. “Ducks 2.0”: post-Niedermayer/Weight, pre-Teemu Selanne.
3. “Ducks 3.0”: post-Selanne.

The team that beat the Blues on Saturday with (somehow) five goals played like Ducks 1.0. It was ugly. The Blues are uglier.

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