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BROSSARD, Que. -- Those impatient for the Stanley Cup to return to Canada will have just one team to root for in the NHL playoffs -- the Montreal Canadiens. For the first time since 1973, only one Canadian team has qualified for the NHL post-season. The Canadiens will face the Tampa Bay Lightning in the opening round, with only home ice advantage to be decided in the final regular-season games on the weekend. Defenceman Josh Gorges said Friday he expects a lot of attention, but it will be no more pressure than what the team deals with every day of the season. "There may be more eyes within Canada watching our games," the Kelowna, B.C. native said. "In Canada, they have their loyalties to their local teams, but come playoff time, youve watched when Vancouver was in the Cup (final) a few years ago. "Calgary, Edmonton, the same thing. The whole country rallies around because they want to see a Stanley Cup come back to Canada. But I dont think it adds anything. Theres enough pressure just because of what were trying to accomplish." In 1973, the Canadiens were the lone Canadian playoff team and they won the Cup. They are also the last Canadian team to win a Cup in 1993. They are widely considered to be long shots to go more than a round or two this time, even though theyve had an excellent season, have Canadian Olympic gold medallist Carey Price in goal, and got a major boost at the trade deadline in scoring winger Thomas Vanek. Last season, four Canadian teams made the playoffs. Only two made it in the two seasons before that. It seems odd that clubs with such enthusiastic fans and which sell out every game have so much trouble finishing in the top eight in their conferences. But Gorges said the added attention may be what makes it so difficult. "Its a little bit strange, but at the same time, its not easy playing in Canadian markets," he said. "On a lot of teams in the States, theres nothing more to it than going out and playing the game and getting the two points, whereas a lot of times in Canada, you cant escape hockey. "No matter where you go, theres added, outside things that affect your performance. I think weve done a good job here of trying to find that balance, but that could, maybe, be a reason why some Canadian teams havent been in there." The Canadiens have reached the playoffs in six of the last seven seasons, missing in 2012. Their best season since 1993 was in 2010 when they reached the Eastern Conference final. The Vancouver Canucks saw a run of five straight trips to the post-season end this season. "Going into the season, you look at all the Canadian teams and youd think most of them would be contending," said Canadiens winger Brendan Gallagher. "For us, being the only one, well probably have some of Canada on our side. "Some of them will still hate us, but it doesnt change what we do and how we have to prepare." The second-year forwards only playoff experience was in an all-Canadian series last spring, when Montreal was beaten in five games by the Ottawa Senators. "Theres so much expectation for Canadian teams to compete because the fans are so passionate and they care so much," said Gallagher, an Edmonton native. "Every fan base in Canada expects their team to be in the playoffs every year. "Im sure next year it will be different, but for us, it doesnt change anything. Were happy to be where we are and want to take advantage of it." While having only one team is rare, its an improvement on 1970, when no Canadian teams made it. Bobby Orrs Boston Bruins beat St. Louis in the final that year. The Canadiens, who are 0-for-20 on the power play in their last seven games, worked mostly on special teams going into their regular season finale Saturday night at home against the New York Rangers. The Canadiens hope a win coupled with a Tampa Bay loss will let them start the playoffs at home, but they dont seem to be sweating it one way or the other. "If its us or Tampa Bay that has home ice advantage, we dont know," said coach Michel Therrien. "But I can predict what the answers will be when we know on Sunday night: The team that has it will be really happy and the team that doesnt will say it doesnt matter." Forward Lars Eller didnt skate and it likely to miss a third game with a flu. Winger Brandon Prust is also out with an upper body injury. Therrien expects him to be ready for the playoffs but cautioned "were not quite sure yet." Forward Travis Moen, out eight games with a concussion, is also a question mark. Winger Michael Blunden was recalled from AHL Hamilton. The Canadiens announced that captain Brian Gionta edged out Gallagher for the Jacques Beauchamp Trophy as the teams unsung hero in voting by the local media. The two-way right winger has played 80 games this season after missing a large part of the last two campaigns with biceps injuries. "From the outside looking in, fans may not realize how important he is," Gorges said of Gionta. "Its not always about how many points you get, its what you do to help the team win games." 17:39ET 11-04-14 Seattle Seahawks Jerseys . Patton told The Baltimore Sun that he took an Adderall pill four days before the season finished, trying to improve his short-term focus. "I took one because I was stupid," Patton told The Sun. Rees Odhiambo Jersey .75 million contract for the 2014 season and avoided arbitration. The team announced the agreement on Tuesday. http://www.seahawksfansprostore.com/Bla ... l?cat=1013. Fans holding laudatory signs started showing up at Yankee Stadium when the gates opened at 4 p.m. Monday, an hour early in order to give them a chance to watch the New York captain take batting practice. Patrick Kerney Jersey . -- In the stadium program sold at the Miami Dolphins game on Halloween, Richie Incognito was asked whos the easiest teammate to scare. Shaquill Griffin Jersey . Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist stood tall with 41 saves between the pipes, but it was defenceman Ryan McDonagh who got the first star of the game as he had a goal and an assist and now has two goals and four assists for six points in two games.VALLS, Spain -- Slovenian cyclist Luka Mezgec earned his third stage win of this Volta a Catalunya, edging the pack in the final sprint on Friday. Joaquim Rodriguez maintained the overall lead, with the 218-kilometre (134-mile) ride from Llanars Vall de Camprodon to Valls producing no changes at the top of the general classification. Mezgec, riding for Giant-Shimano, finished the stage in 5 hours, 16 minutes at the front of a large pack. He also won the two opening stages of the seven-day race with sprint finishes. Rodriguez kept his four-second lead over Alberto Contador. Tejay van Garderen remained seven seconds behind. Nairo Quintana trailed by 10 secondds and Tour de France winner Christopher Froome was 17 seconds off the pacesetter.dddddddddddd "I hope I can reach the final day with the same advantage," said Rodriguez, who won the Volta in 2010. "We will have to be very attentive and stay focused." Contador downplayed his chances of overtaking Rodriguez. "The remaining course leaves very little margin," Contador said. "For me, the important thing is to recover physically from these tiring days." Saturdays sixth stage will take riders over 172 kilometres (107 miles) from El Vendrell to Vilanova i la Geltru. The race finishes in Barcelona on Sunday. Cheap NFL Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys Wholesale NFL Jerseys Jerseys From China Wholesale NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys Cheap Jerseys ' ' '
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