The Canadiens prepare to face the Rangers in the Eastern Conference Final, plus updates on the Leafs, Canucks, Oilers and Jets. 

The Canadiens and Rangers open the Eastern Conference Final Saturday afternoon in Montreal.

The Canadiens and Rangers open the Eastern Conference Final Saturday afternoon in Montreal.

MONTREAL GAZETTE:  The Canadiens matchup with the NY Rangers in the Eastern Conference will feature “good goaltending, young studs and some familiar faces”.

CBC.CA: Game Seven between the Canadiens and Boston Bruins set a Canadian TV record for an NHL second round playoff telecast with over 4.56 million viewers.

TORONTO SUN/TORONTO STAR: Recent comments by Toronto Maple Leafs president Brendan Shanahan suggest he isn’t planning on blowing up his roster (and intends to keep Dion Phaneuf as team captain), but will demand more from the players and intends to be more of a “hands-on” president.

SPECTOR’ S NOTE: So bang goes those rumors of the Leafs trading Phaneuf this summer. Of course, if a rival team is willing to grossly overpay for the Leafs captain (like, say, if the Penguins management lost its mind and offered Sidney Crosby straight up for Phaneuf), Shanahan will rubber-stamp that deal. Otherwise, it sounds like he wants to add players to help Phaneuf. 

SPORTSNET.CA: Enough time has passed to dish some dirt about John Tortorella’s disastrous short tenure as Canucks head coach.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Fascinating stuff, I’m sure, which should titillate Canucks fans, yet is completely irrelevant to the club’s direction now. Torts is gone, as is former GM Mike Gillis, and so far the search continues for their replacements. 

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Another Oilers player has jumped to the KHL, this time Denis Grebeshkov, returning after only one unimpressive season in Edmonton.

WINNIPEG SUN: Ken Wiebe believes the Jets should make a pitch this summer for pending UFA Leo Komarov, who intends to return to the NHL next season. He spent this past season in the KHL after failing to agree to terms with the Maple Leafs.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Sounds like Komarov sees himself as a second-line winger, while NHL clubs are likely more interested in him as a checking line winger. Should be interesting to see where he ends up.  He’s said he’d like to return to Toronto but I’m not sure if he fits into their plans.