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Rite of Spring 2019: The Chase for the Stanley Cup


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38 minutes ago, Kramerica Industries said:

 

Honestly, I would give the Capitals the nod against the Bruins, but if they go out tomorrow night while Boston wins tonight, the Bruins are the runaway favorites to win the Cup, no question. There isn't a team out there who I would pick to beat them, all things taken into account.

 

Not that I have much love towards Toronto and, frankly, if they win the Cup with their core before the Lightning do I'll be very annoyed, but, I was very annoyed at them not getting the job done in front of their fans on Sunday. That was the opportunity they all wanted, right? One win at home sends you through, and they couldn't do it. I know they've won twice in Boston already, so it's not impossible for them, but good luck doing it a third time. Because now you're asking a lot to move on, being in this situation. 

 

Whether I want a Carolina shocker is going to depend entirely on what happens in that series. 

 

 

I think the Leafs chance was in Game 6 and everybody deep-down knows this. There is something real about playing for a team where you don't have to worry about lifting the weight of a city off its shoulders. The Leafs players are shouldering this huge burden, the Bruins players can just go out and play relaxed. I heard a few Blue Jackets players admit that there was some pressure the last couple years because the franchise had never won a playoff series and it'll be nice to not worry about that anymore. 

 

Of course, maybe Toronto is one of those teams where that intense pressure is magnified at home and they find they can relax better on the road. And it's very possible that Rask comes out and :censored:s the bed tonight and all of this doesn't mean anything. I just generally think A. I pick the team that wins game 6 most of the time because of momentum, especially if it forces game 7 back to their home arena, B. the home team in Game 7's is always at an advantage, and C. the Leafs have to carry this added pressure that the Bruins don't have. Two years ago the Leafs were young and happy to be in the playoffs and they gave Washington a scare, last year they could've won the series and blew it, this year they have to face the fact that the best collection of talent the team has assembled in like 50 years plus Tavares is in danger of going 0-3 in the playoffs if they don't win tonight. 

 

I would much rather Carolina win tomorrow night regardless of whoever wins the Boston-Toronto series, but that's because I want the easiest possible road for the Blue Jackets, of course. 

 

 

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48 minutes ago, McCarthy said:

 

I think the Leafs chance was in Game 6 and everybody deep-down knows this. There is something real about playing for a team where you don't have to worry about lifting the weight of a city off its shoulders. The Leafs players are shouldering this huge burden, the Bruins players can just go out and play relaxed. I heard a few Blue Jackets players admit that there was some pressure the last couple years because the franchise had never won a playoff series and it'll be nice to not worry about that anymore. 

 

Of course, maybe Toronto is one of those teams where that intense pressure is magnified at home and they find they can relax better on the road. And it's very possible that Rask comes out and :censored:s the bed tonight and all of this doesn't mean anything. I just generally think A. I pick the team that wins game 6 most of the time because of momentum, especially if it forces game 7 back to their home arena, B. the home team in Game 7's is always at an advantage, and C. the Leafs have to carry this added pressure that the Bruins don't have.

 

 

I disagree, respectfully of course. While the pressure in Boston isn’t the same as it is in Toronto because.. Canada, it’s certainly not a walk in the park. The team that easily takes the most heat in this town is the Bruins. Mostly because they’ve had a supremely talented core for a decade and have wilted under the pressure season after season (minus 2011). The core is old, the expectations are high, and there’s quite a bit of pressure on this team right now to sack up and get the job done. If they don’t I see quite a few moves being made in the offseason. 

 

In response to others comments about Washington/Boson. Braden F’n Holtby. This guy has been a Bruins killer since forever, I don’t care how bad Washington is playing I want nothing to do with them.

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1 hour ago, speedy said:

 

I disagree, respectfully of course. While the pressure in Boston isn’t the same as it is in Toronto because.. Canada, it’s certainly not a walk in the park. The team that easily takes the most heat in this town is the Bruins. Mostly because they’ve had a supremely talented core for a decade and have wilted under the pressure season after season (minus 2011). The core is old, the expectations are high, and there’s quite a bit of pressure on this team right now to sack up and get the job done. If they don’t I see quite a few moves being made in the offseason. 

 

 

Obviously there's some pressure because it's the playoffs and there's always some pressure, but the pressure on the Bruins is so minute relative to Toronto's that it might as well be non-existent. I know most of these guys weren't on the team in 2011 so they don't care about 2011, but what I'm talking about is a vibe. The team starts to lose in Game 6 and the city's first instinct is nervousness. The players feel it, the fans feel it, you can feel it through the TV. Boston doesn't have that and hasn't had that really since the Red Sox in 2004. Bruins fans haven't experienced that "oh no we're going to lose dread" since winning in 2011. That's what I'm talking about. 

 

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5 hours ago, McCarthy said:

I really want the Maple Leafs and Hurricanes to advance so we can type "The Blue Jackets, Maple Leafs, Hurricanes, or Islanders will be in the Stanley Cup Final". 

 

We're already at "Dallas or St. Louis will be in the West Final" something nobody would have said before the season, early in the season, midway through the season, or even late into the season. It was only in the final week or two that we got to that point. Same for Colorado having its shot.

 

Top two seeds out. Pittsburgh and Nashville out. Three Game 7s on deck that could knock out Boston/Washington/San Jose/Vegas. It's already a postseason for the books.

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2 hours ago, McCarthy said:

 

Obviously there's some pressure because it's the playoffs and there's always some pressure, but the pressure on the Bruins is so minute relative to Toronto's that it might as well be non-existent. I know most of these guys weren't on the team in 2011 so they don't care about 2011, but what I'm talking about is a vibe. The team starts to lose in Game 6 and the city's first instinct is nervousness. The players feel it, the fans feel it, you can feel it through the TV. Boston doesn't have that and hasn't had that really since the Red Sox in 2004. Bruins fans haven't experienced that "oh no we're going to lose dread" since winning in 2011. That's what I'm talking about. 

 

Trust me, the Bruins sect in Boston has and always will have that vibe so long as the core is here. You’re right most of these guys weren’t here 8 years ago, but the primetime players were. They’ve shown the ability to not show up, and have done it too frequently in the biggest moments. I’ll spare you the list, but I’m sure @Brass can concur.

 

As I said, it’s not at the level of Toronto. But this isn’t Dallas or Phoenix, these guys aren’t ‘relaxed’.

 

Speaking of Dallas, is there a worse crowd in hockey? They almost put me to sleep last night - felt like a game in early October.

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4 hours ago, speedy said:

Trust me, the Bruins sect in Boston has and always will have that vibe so long as the core is here. You’re right most of these guys weren’t here 8 years ago, but the primetime players were. They’ve shown the ability to not show up, and have done it too frequently in the biggest moments. I’ll spare you the list, but I’m sure @Brass can concur.

 

Agreed. There is nervousness in this game. Tuukka has shown that when the lights are the brightest, the goals he lets in are the softest. He's universally beloved in Boston, though. The nervousness, in my opinion, is more so felt by the Gallery God fans who have been forced out of the arena due to high ticket prices and snobs in suits. Boston sports don't have the Tawmy-from-Quinzee types anymore; they're essentially business meetings. There are both positive and negative aspects to that.

 

 

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I loooooooooove that the Bruins just forget how to play hockey when they take leads. I love it soooooooooo much.

 

John Moore is the worst player on the Bruins playoff roster since Kaspers Daugavins 

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The Leafs will lose this game.

Frederik Andersen isn't good enough. Kuraly made a beautiful neutral zone move on that third goal, but Andersen should have had it from that far out anyway. This isn't the first time this has happened too. He has a tendency to give up goals from far out, and it's not going to cut it in the playoffs when every goal matters.

And the defence....Jesus Christ the defence. Another game seven in Boston and another goal given up by Jake Gardiner. The D has been the Leafs' weak point all year, just like it was last year. And just like last year? It's not good enough to get it done when it comes to a seven game series against a talented team.

 

Hats off to Boston for weathering the Leafs' more consistent play this year. They earned their Ws. The Leafs didn't make it any easier on themselves with weak goaltending and absent-minded defensive turnovers though. They need to start investing in those areas if they're going to win anything with this core.

 

1 hour ago, MiK said:

Canadians of the board, what is the appeal of Don Cherry?

He has a lot of appeal for older generations who tend to share his sensibilities. These days? He's the amusing old man who rants and dresses funny.

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