Wednesday, May 08, 2013

Stanley Cup Roundup*

As always, there are some seriously good series being played in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. All Original Six teams made the playoffs, the top two markets in the country (New York, LA) each have two teams in the mix, Canada was well-represented, and there are no teams from truly poor hockey markets like Phoenix or Nashville. And we're already rid of the Vancouver Canucks.

Sharks 4, Canucks 3 (OT) - Sharks win series 4-0
Vancouver went with Cory Schneider and it didn't really work out. This was a matchup between teams that perennially choke in the playoffs, so one of them had to advance and one had to be embarrassed. I had to post a pic of a hot girl in Vancouver colors, since I won't have a chance to post anymore in the upcoming weeks.

Blackhawks 3, Wild 0 - Blackhawks lead series 3-1
Chicago only lost 7 games in regulation this season, and Minnesota doesn't appear to be much of a match for them. The Wild aren't healthy and the Blackhawks have Patrick Sharp, who had 2 goals in the game and has 4 in the series.

Senators 3, Canadiens 2 (OT) - Senators lead series 3-1
Only 8 penalty minutes in this game. There were about 30 times as many penalty minutes in the previous game. Montreal got conservative in the 3rd period and it screwed them. Ottawa grinded out a pair of goals. Carey Price appeared to hurt his groin at the end of the 3rd and backup Peter Budaj allowed the Kyle Turris game-winner. Ottawa scares me more than any other team in the East. They're getting 110% from their talent and they've been working their asses off all season. Every game they played against the Bruins was close and they got better and better against the B's as the season progressed.

Islanders 6, Penguins 4 - Series tied 2-2
The Penguins have the best skaters in the NHL. No doubt about it. They're stacked. Unfortunately, their goalie is Marc-Andre Fleury. He allowed 6 goals on 24 shots. One fourth of the shots on goal went by him. And some of them were hideous. He's allowed 14 goals in the last 3 games, and Vokoun might get the start in Game 5.

Tonight's games...

7:00pm - Bruins @ Maple Leafs - Bruins lead series 2-1 - NESN/NHL Network
The Bruins need to remain consistent. Tonight they have an opportunity to start burying Toronto's grave. They also have an opportunity to give Toronto a second life.

7:30pm - Capitals @ Rangers - Capitals lead series 2-1 - NBC Sports
The Rangers were up against it and Game 3 and came through. Washington looks good, they have Ovechkin, they have depth, and the Rangers don't seem to know how to win playoff series. However, the Caps will have to find another gear to knock them out.

9:00pm - Kings @ Blues - Series tied 2-2 - CNBC
The defending Champions don't look as sharp as they did last year. I haven't seen much of this series but St. Louis has looked good from what I have seen. And Jonathan Quick has looked human.

10:00pm - Red Wings @ Ducks - Series tied 2-2 - NBC Sports
This series is a big reason why Detroit will be moving to the Eastern Conference. A fanbase in the Eastern Time zone is forced to watch playoff games at 10:00pm. On weeknights. Not good for business. One good thing is if Detroit wins they could face Midwest rival Chicago in the next round. And if Anaheim wins they could face California rival LA.