NHL broadcaster Pierre McGuire admitted he was taken by surprise when at the end of his post game interview with P.K. Subban following the Canadiens Game 7 win over the Bruins in the second round, after the Montreal defenceman planted a huge kiss on McGuires forehead as he exclaimed, "Yeah baby!" before heading off to celebrate with his teammates in their dressing room. "I didnt see that coming at all," McGuire told TSN.ca recently. But what McGuire has always seen coming was the performance and level of play Subban showed in the Canadiens run through to Game 6 of the 2014 Eastern Conference Final. Subban finished the playoffs with 14 points in 17 games, with seven of those points coming in that series win over the Bruins. He played a major role in helping Montreal upset the Presidents Trophy winners and helped lead his team to within two wins of their first Stanley Cup Final berth in 21 years. As McGuire pointed out, it wasnt just Subbans skill - that helped him win the 2013 Norris Trophy - that allowed him to take a big step forward in the playoffs, but also the enthusiasm he showed in that interview and how he applies that both on and off the ice. "I remember when P.K. went to his first World Junior Championship and talking to him before he flew over to Pardubice," McGuire said. "He was beaming and just so excited to go over there and to be part of the experience. Obviously then he was such a raw talent and hes worked hard to get to where he is now. But that excitement and enthusiasm for the game has never faded. Its still there now and thats a main reason for what youre seeing now. Thats why hes a leader. He loves the game; he plays it the right way and youre seeing that more and more now. Can he improve? Yes and hell tell you that. But what youre seeing now is the potential anyone who knew him well saw." While winning the Norris Trophy last season impressed his teammates, that passion for the game and what he did to help the Canadiens go deep into the playoffs was equally if not more impressive. "Hes definitely maturing and hes showing why he won the Norris Trophy," said teammate Carey Price on Saturday. "He had an excellent postseason. For us to win the Cup, were going to need him to play that way. Hes a fun-loving guy; hes fun to hang out with and he makes it enjoyable to come to the rink every day. Hes a really good buddy of mine obviously and I was happy to see him succeed in the playoffs and prove a lot of doubters wrong." Canadiens defenceman Mike Weaver was acquired at the trade deadline and in his short time as Subbans teammate, realized how infectious the 25-year-olds love of the game was having an effect on him. "I think a lot of the time the enjoyment of the game is sometimes forgotten," said Weaver, who is an unrestricted free agent in July. "You almost gotta get back to the time when you had fun playing hockey and instead of it being a job, its more of a privilege. Playing with him and even in playing in Montreal, I started to enjoy the game again." When told of Weavers comments, a flattered Subban told the media that enjoying the game and embracing the moment has always been an important part of his approach. "I enjoy every moment," Subban said on Saturday. "Through the ups and downs you have to because as much as careers are long, theyre short too. You just dont know what can happen so you have to enjoy your time when youre out there. The playoffs are a fun time to play and I obviously enjoy playing that time of year." Subban, who is a restricted free agent again this July (this time with arbitration rights), will continue to be a hot topic as the offseason gets under way. But before he headed off for what will be his shortest summer yet as an NHLer, he made it clear he wants to continue to enjoy the playoff moments with the Canadiens and help them build towards and achieve their ultimate goal of winning their 25th Stanley Cup. "Theres something about that," Subban explained. "Theres something about building a team and being part of a special group that youve seen grow from the bottom up and add blocks along the way. Theres something special about winning with a team like that. I believe we have an opportunity to do that here. I look at the Montreal Canadiens winning the Cup in 93 and only being to the conference finals two times since then, and Ive been to them both times. A lot of guys go their whole career and never make it to a conference final and get to within two wins of a Stanley Cup Final, so I understand the importance of taking advantage of those moments. Its unfortunate we didnt get that done this year, but I know that the future is bright and theres going to be plenty of opportunities for us to redeem ourselves and take that next step." James Murphy is a freelance reporter who also writes for NHL.com, the Boston Herald and XNsports.com. He covered the Boston Bruins/NHL for last 11 seasons writing for ESPNBoston.com, ESPN.com, NHL.com, NESN.com, the Boston Metro, Insidehockey.com and Le Hockey Magazine. Murphy also currently hosts the radio show "Murphys Hockey Law" heard Saturdays 9-11 AM ET on Sirius/XM NHL Network Radio and 4-6 PM ET on Websportsmedia.com. In addition to that, he is a regular guest TSN 690 in Montreal and Sirius/XM NHL Network Radio as well as a hockey analyst on CTV Montreal. Sherrick McManis Jersey
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. LaQuinton Ross scored 17 of his 20 points in the first half, hitting his first four 3-pointers, to send No.TORONTO – There may come a time in the next few years when the Houston Astros are a good baseball team. That time, however, is not now and with apologies to the "Its Early" crowd, with whom we typically should all agree hardly removed from opening day, this three-game home set with the Houston Astros is important to the Blue Jays. Nobody is suggesting that, say, if Toronto gets swept its season is over. But a check of the math tells you it doesnt help. The Blue Jays, by virtue of their perch in the American League East, have the unenviable task of playing 76 of their 162 games against their four divisional opponents. They get the New York Yankees, Boston Red Sox, Tampa Bay Rays and Baltimore Orioles 19 times each, a veritable meat grinder that can chew up and spit out the hope for a successful season all by itself. Lets say, for the sake of argument, the Blue Jays go 38-38 against their own division. That leaves 86 games against non-divisional opponents. To get to 90 wins, which likely wont be enough to win the division and may or may not be enough to capture one of the two wild card spots, Toronto would have to go 52-34. So far, after splitting a four-game series in Tampa Bay and disappointingly dropping two of three at home to the Yankees, the Jays are 3-4 within the AL East. Houston marks the first non-divisional opponent and due to the make up of the schedule, this is the only time the Astros will visit Toronto all year. It doesnt matter whether its April, June, or the intensity filled months of August and September, Houstons only here once and when they visit the Jays need to make hay. More than anything, manager John Gibbons wants his club to better protect home soil. "Ive always said you cant bury yourself early," said Gibbons. "Especially in this division, its an uphill battle and its real tough to come back. Were trying to get off to a good start and with more games at home itd be nice to finish up good at home. Youve got to play good at home, its no secret. Hold your own on the road and play good baseball at home." JEKYLL AND HYDE ROTATION The biggest question facing the Blue Jays (3-4) heading into the season centred on the starting rotation. Could it hold up in the toughest division in baseball? In the wins, Dr. Jekyll rules the day. When Torontos lost, Mr. Hyde rearrs his ugly face.dddddddddddd. Heres a look at the numbers through the first seven games: In the three wins, no runs allowed in 20 2/3 innings pitched. April 1: Drew Hutchison, 5.1 innings pitched.April 2: Mark Buehrle, 8.2 IP.April 5: R.A. Dickey, 6.2 IP. In the four losses, the starts have allowed a staggering 20 earned runs in just 16 innings pitched (11.25 ERA, averaging four innings pitched per start): March 31: R.A. Dickey, 6 earned runs in 5 innings pitched.April 3: Brandon Morrow, 4 ER in 5 IP.April 4: Dustin McGowan, 4 ER in 2.2 IP.April 6: Drew Hutchison, 6 ER in 3.1 IP. ROTATION JUGGLING Mondays off day has afforded manager John Gibbons the opportunity to flip R.A. Dickey and Dustin McGowan, meaning Dickey will start Thursdays series finale against the Astros and McGowan will open a three-game set in Baltimore on Friday night. "Thatll split up Morrow and McGowan," said Gibbons. "The two guys were watching a little bit. Put Dickey in the middle and he can eat some innings, anyway." Dickey has repeatedly said he prefers pitching under a roof, although Gibbons denied the forecasted cool conditions outdoors in Baltimore factored in to the decision. REYES UPDATE Jose Reyes, eligible to come off the disabled list from a strained left hamstring on April 16, ran the treadmill and took ground balls during batting practice on Tuesday afternoon. "Ill know better when I start running and see how Im feeling," said Reyes. "For now, Ill just take it day by day and see what happens." Reyes has been hitting to maintain his batting stroke but still has yet to run at full speed. When Reyes is ready to play, he expects to appear in at least a couple of minor league rehab games before returning to the Blue Jays. JANSSEN UPDATE Casey Janssen, out with an abdominal/back strain, doesnt think hell be ready to come off the disabled list when hes eligible on Sunday. "Probably not," said Janssen. "I dont know the exact date but Ive got to get on a rehab somewhere; hopefully shortly thereafter." Janssen expects only to need one or two minor league rehab games before hes back with the Blue Jays. If he continues to progress, its not unreasonable to expect Janssen to return mid-to-late next week. Cheap NFL Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys Wholesale NFL Jerseys Jerseys From China Wholesale NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys Cheap Jerseys
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