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The NHL Playoff Format & Postseason Overview

The NHL playoffs start Wednesday night. To set the tone for the entire postseason, what follows is TheSportsNotebook’s Tale of the Tape on all 16 teams—or, more accurately, a concise summation of the statistical tape measurement.

We’ve reviewed all 16 teams by every worthwhile measuring stick—do they score, and do they generate a high shot volume? Can they prevent the opponent from doing the same? How do they execute in standard 5-on-5 play, on the power play and in the penalty kill? How good is the goalie and who are the key players? What follows is how each playoff team has performed over the regular season in that regard.

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2014 Stanley Cup Betting Odds

March Madness might be over, with UConn winning the 2014 NCAA Tournament, but Spring Madness is about to begin. The NHL playoffs are every bit as unpredictable as the NCAA Tournament is, and in the case of hockey, the Madness goes all the way into June. The NHL playoffs begin on Wednesday night, so let’s set the tone with a look at the Stanley Cup betting odds.

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The 1977 Portland Trail Blazers Take Out Two Big Stars On The Way To A Title

The 1977 Portland Trail Blazers spent the NBA regular season looking like a nice, solid, up-and-coming team, but one that still had work to do in order to get to the top. The spring of 1977 saw Portland perform what is a rare feat in the NBA and its pull consecutive upsets and win ahead of their time.

Bill Walton had been the cornerstone player at UCLA in the early 1970s, and the 24-year-old was now part of the young and talented 1977 Portland Trail Blazers team. Walton combined with fellow 24-year-old Maurice Lucas to give Portland an interior combination as potent as any in the NBA.

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NCAA Tournament Coverage: Napier Completes UConn’s Run

The improbable run of UConn completed on Monday night, as the Huskies defeated the Kentucky Wildcats 60-54 to win the 2014 NCAA Tournament. The storylines from the championship game in Dallas are as follows…

*This was the tournament of Shabazz Napier. The senior guard played 39 minutes, and knocked down 22 points, on 8-for-16 from the floor (including 4-for-9 from behind the arc). Napier’s actual impact seemed much larger, as he handled the ball exquisitely, preventing his offense from ever bogging down, dribbling in and out of the lane without fear of having his pocket picked.


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NCAA Tournament Coverage: The Cardiac ‘Cats Survive To Monday Night

The world of sabermetrics—or stat geeks if you want a less complimentary term—has long been assuring us that the results of close games are decided mostly by luck, and that it’s all “variance” to use their mathematical term. The sabermetrics crowd has been thrown for a loop by the success of the Kentucky Wildcats in the 2014 NCAA Tournament, as the Cardiac ‘Cats continued their surreal run of last-second wins in a 74-73 thriller over Wisconsin in Saturday’s national semi-final.

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