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Thursday, May 21, 2015

JLB ELECTRIC THURSDAY EYE-OPENER

Tampa Bay needed an overtime goal from Nikita Kucherov to take the lead in the Eastern Final against the New York Rangers. The 6-5 victory on home ice gives the Lightning a 2-1 series lead heading to Game 4 in Tampa Bay on Friday night. Ondrej Palat popped in a pair of goals and added an assist for the Lightning.

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The United Center in Chicago will be rocking tonight as the NHL's Western final resumes with the Blackhawks hosting the Anaheim Ducks in Game 3 of their series. The Western finalists split the opening two games in Anaheim, including Chicago's triple-overtime 3-2 victory on Tuesday.

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LeBron James scored 31 points and J.R. Smith made eight three-pointers and added 28, leading the Cleveland Cavaliers past the top-seeded Atlanta Hawks 97-89 in Game 1 of the NBA's Eastern final. Game 2 is Friday night in Atlanta.

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Houston Rockets centre Dwight Howard says he has a sprained left knee and is unsure whether he'll be able to play against the homecourt Golden State Warriors in Game 2 of the Western Conference final tonight. Golden State leads the series 1-0.

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Future hall-of-famer Martin Brodeur has signed a three-year contract to become the St. Louis Blues' assistant GM. The 43-year-old former goalie played seven games for the Blues this season before retiring in late January. Brodeur won three Stanley Cups in his 21 seasons with New Jersey and is the all-time leader in a host of goaltending stats.

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The Toronto Maple Leafs are making a big bet on the man they hope will help them end a decade-long streak of not making the playoffs. The Leafs have hired Mike Babcock, who has coached Detroit the past 10 years. Babcock signed an eight-year, 50-million dollar deal that makes him the highest-paid coach in the NHL.

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The bullpen coughed up another loss for the Toronto Blue Jays last night. Reliever Steve Delabar gave up a two-run double to Marc Krauss in the seventh inning that put the LA Angels ahead to stay in a 4-3 victory. The Jays have lost seven of their last eight games and are a season-worst six games below break-even.

(CP)

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