The NHL playoffs continue. Several series are over, In the East, the Pittsburgh Penguins, as expected, trashed the "We've been ready for the golf course since January" Ottawa Senators in four straight. The New York Rangers continued their domination of the New Jersey Devils by ousting the latter in five games. The Philadelphia Flyers have a chance to close out the Washington Ovechkins, I mean, the Washington Capitals, in Game Six of their series tonight. That leaves just one series, where the Montreal Canadiens taken on the Boston Bruins in Game Seven of their series, and that is also tonight. As readers of this blog know, I have been a diehard Habs fan my whole life. Rather than reinvent the wheel, I am going to reprint the contents of an e-mail I sent to a friend on Sunday morning after Montreal lost Game Six on Saturday night:
"This team is gutless and leaderless, and I am almost hoping that Boston does win tomorrow night [editor's note: that's tonight, now]. The Bruins have been the better team now in five of the six games in the series, They deserve to win, unlike the Hab-nots. Frankly, if not for Carey Price's heroics in Game Two (and Game Four, now that I think about it), last night would have been the series clinching win for Boston.
The Bruins have shown more heart and effort than the Canadiens on virtually every shift. They want it more. I am completely disgusted with the Habs' play. And, it's fairly obvious that Claude Julien is badly outcoaching Guy Carbonneau. You're right, even if Montreal somehow does win tomorrow night, something which I seriously doubt, the team will get clobbered by either Philadelphia or New York in the second round. I'd rather it not waste my time and just lose tomorrow.
We could be looking at yet another piece of negative Habs' history--the first team in the history of the franchise to blow a 3-1 series lead. As I said, in order to avoid a second round humiliation, let them go ahead and do it now, rather than lose in five in Round Two."
That sums up my feelings pretty accurately right now!
Out west, the Detroit Red Wings finally eliminated the stubborn Nashville Predators in six games yesterday, and a few hours later, the Dallas Stars made sure that we would have a new Stanley Cup Champion this year by completing a six game upset of the Anaheim Ducks. In Calgary, the Flames made sure that we'd have some hockey to watch tomorrow night by winning game six against the San Jose Sharks last night, setting up a winner take all match in Game Seven. Regardless of who wins, the survivor might now have much left for the next round, as this has been an extremely bruising series. Finally, the Colorado Avalanche served notice that they will be a force in the post-season when they road the hot goaltending of Jose Theodore to a first round, six game elimination of the Minnesota Wild.
If things shake out the way I expect, we will see Pittsburgh host Boston and Philadelphia play New York in the East, while out west one of the great playoff rivalries of the 1990s will be renewed when Detroit hosts Colorado, with the winner of that series to take on the winner of the San Jose-Dllas tilt.