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Prickly Kesler was just what Ducks needed

Ryan Kesler might not look that friendly, but the Ducks believe he is the perfect piece to their Cup puzzle.

AP Photo/Julie Jacobson
3hCraig Custance

Custance: Three keys for Rangers' offseason

When Rangers GM Glen Sather started shipping away first-rounders, he upped the ante in New York. It’s about winning Stanley Cups now in that organization, so falling short of a return to the finals is a disappointment.

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24mScott Burnside

W2W4: Blackhawks at Ducks, Game 7

There is only one question left to answer in Game 7 of the West finals: Who will earn a berth in the Stanley Cup finals?

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Better matchup for Lightning: Blackhawks or Ducks? (1:50)
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1dPierre LeBrun

Game 7s are something you don't forget

It's no accident that players who stepped on the ice thousands of times can remember every detail of a Game 7 years later.

AP Photo/Julie Jacobson
3hCraig Custance

Three keys to the offseason for the New York Rangers

When Rangers GM Glen Sather started shipping away first-rounders, he upped the ante in New York. It’s about winning Stanley Cups now in that organization, so falling short of a return to the finals is a disappointment.

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Breaking down Lightning's Game 7 win (1:38)
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The celebrity that is the Stanley Cup (1:49)
Gregory Shamus/NHLI/Getty Images
1dCraig Custance

Buffalo Sabres make 'perfect hire' with an evolved Dan Bylsma

Early on during Team USA’s world championship semifinal against Russia, head coach Todd Richards noticed that the Russians had found a way to effectively counter his set forecheck so that they were attacking the American defensemen with speed.

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E:60 - Liam the Fist-Bump Kid (12:28)

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Blackhawks, Ducks hold out for a hero

Six nights of tumult and heaving emotions have led to one night to determine who advances to the Stanley Cup finals. So who goes from unsung hero to, well, sung? Potential heroes

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Lightning Video: Jon Cooper joins SportsCenter, recalls the "surreal" homecoming and how the Triplets line came to be

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Blackhawks have been here before

Over the last 10 NHL postseasons, the Blackhawks have won 71 percent of the elimination games they've played. Game 7 is tonight at 8 p.m. ET.

Coach: Lightning's eye is on the big prize

Tampa Bay coach Jon Cooper called it "surreal" to see fans waiting for the team at the airport after their Game 7 win and said it was because "Ben Bishop rises to the occasion every single time."

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Pierre LeBrun @Real_ESPNLeBrun

If Chicago wins tonight, the Tampa Bay Lightning will be the first team in NHL history to play 4 Original Six teams in one playoff year

Powers: D-men not fazed by minutes

The Blackhawks' top four defensemen have carried the load against the Ducks -- combining for more than 725 minutes -- and they relish the chance to play huge minutes again tonight in Game 7. But what sort of toll has all that time -- and all those hits -- taken? 'We welcome the opportunity'

Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire

Burnside: Kesler just what Ducks needed

No team will advance to the Stanley Cup finals because of one player. The game is too fast, too complex; the lines separating success and failure too fine for it to be that simple. But the prickly Ryan Kesler just might be the perfect piece to Anaheim's Cup puzzle. 'A force to be reckoned with'

Stephen Dunn/Getty Images