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Rite of Spring 2019: The Chase for the Stanley Cup

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12 hours ago, TrueYankee26 said:

You should see this place when either:

 

- Yankees

- Cowboys

- Lakers

- Leafs

- Habs

 

Get their you know what together and win chips again. Will make any Boston championship look like a picnic.

 

The Cowboys have a good shot of losing in the Super Bowl to the Patriots, as do the Saints, Rams (again) and Bears

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1 hour ago, McCarthy said:

 

When was the last time a team blew their golden opportunity at home in Game 6 and then actually overcame that to win on the road in game 7? Has it ever happened? The road team that just lost game 6 at home always kind of feels like dead team walking going into game 7. 

 

Someone over at HF looked it up. The last time a team in the SCF overcame this kind of setback was in the '40s. It's happened a few times in other rounds of the playoffs, but in the Final, it's been another thing altogether.

 

From my POV, the thing is that, after Game 2, you knew the Blues were going to need to win another road game in order to win this series. Road teams win all the time in the NHL; if the Blues could win a game in Boston, you knew the Bruins could win a game in St. Louis. In many ways, home ice advantage isn't really "stolen" unless you've pulled a couple of scalps. But there's, usually, a limit to that; it's difficult to really hope for more than two road wins in a given series. The Blues managed to do that, and then managed to squander it away. Those two road wins don't matter anymore. 

 

The Bruins lost two home games against Toronto, but when they got that winner-take-all home game, they were the better team and won rather comfortably. There's not much here telling me that the Blues are a better team than the Maple Leafs, and there's not much telling me why I should expect anything to be different. After all, Freddie Andersen had held the Bruins to a total of three goals allowed in the 5th and 6th games of that series; Toronto lost that 6th game because they couldn't solve Rask. And the Rask from the end of that series and the Columbus series was the Rask we saw last night. He's no doubt the Conn Smythe winner if the Bruins win Game 7; he's been the best player for the Bruins from start-to-finish. That save where he and McAvoy conspired to keep the puck out last night was one of those moments where you immediately think "uh oh" if you aren't a Bruins fan. You knew the Blues were in trouble at that point because that's where the dangerous combination of an "on" goalie and fortuitous luck are both against you. At that moment, you felt pretty sure the Blues weren't going to win that game.

 

The one thing that might work to the Blues favor is that, Game 7 being a Game 7, there's a good chance the whistles are going to be put away. Given how much the Bruins have dominated on special teams in this series, the Blues will need every minute of that 5v5 play. I don't have the numbers in my head at the moment, but the Blues have definitely outscored the Bruins at even strength in this series. Keep that theme going, they have a chance on Wednesday. At the same time, Marchand/Bergeron/Pastrnak haven't done much 5v5 themselves in this series. How much longer can you really count on that staying the case? They could wake up on Wednesday, a game where Bruins have last change and can get favorable line matchups off dead puck situations, and nobody would be surprised. 

 

Fact is, I don't know how you pick against the Bruins. They're the better team and, when you have a team like that on the ropes, you have to find a way to finish them, however that may be. The Blues failed. You don't often get a second chance to do that. Hopefully the Blues will.

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1 hour ago, BeerGuyJordan said:

As a Nashville fan, the 2018 Preds/Jets series flies in the face of that, off the top of my head. I'm not in a position to do that kind of research right now, but I'm sure it's more common than you think.

 

In the finals, though? The last team to lose game 6 and then win game 7 was Carolina in 2006, before that it was New Jersey in 2003 but they both had game 7 at home. You'd have to do way more research way farther back than I'd care to to find a game 7 in the finals where the home team lost Game 6 and then won game 7 on the road. 

 

edit: kramerica took care of it. 

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, the admiral said:

 

I've always seen Bruins fans as kindred spirits: team's been around forever, exasperated by miserly ownership, always condescended to by the basketball snobs in town. No ill will from me on that series, it was one for the ages.

 

Same, hell of a series, hell of an ending. One thing I'll never forget, living next to The Garden in those days I went for a walk after game 6 just to get some air and soak in the last bits of a SCF - the Chicago fans I did run in to were almost apologetic, couldn't have been nicer. Crazy, really. Sure the winning of a Cup moments earlier will make anyone happy, but I can't imagine most fan bases parading through the defeated town with that kind of "we've seen some :censored:, too" camaraderie in that situation.  

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All I wanted from this series was a competitive SCF, hoping it would go at least 6 games.  It's gone to a 7th and deciding game.  It's better than last year. 

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24 minutes ago, McCarthy said:

 

In the finals, though? The last team to lose game 6 and then win game 7 was Carolina in 2006, before that it was New Jersey in 2003 but they both had game 7 at home. You'd have to do way more research way farther back than I'd care to to find a game 7 in the finals where the home team lost Game 6 and then won game 7 on the road. 

 

edit: kramerica took care of it. 

 

 

 

I figured that was your focus, but you didn't specify, so I offered something relevant I had in my head.

I know that conventional wisdom would indicate a hard likelihood that we get a Bruins win in game 7. I'm still leaning that way, but just barely. This whole playoffs has been weird enough that I don't feel particularly certain of anything.

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14 hours ago, Seadragon76 said:

Um, have you guys forgotten that after the last pasting the Bruins gave the Blues, St. Louis took two in a row?

If anything, this motivates them to get it done in Boston on Wednesday night.

 

Blues have rebounded again and again and again this season and postseason, and to write them off right now when they shouldn't have even gotten to this point by conventional wisdom seems pretty foolish to me. I'm not saying the Blues pull it off on the road, but I am saying that there's still at least three periods left for these two teams to play and losing game six does not equate to losing game seven.

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Does anyone think Tuukka will pull a Giguere and win the Conn Smythe no matter what happens on Wednesday?

 

I think we can all agree if the Bruins win, it'll definitely go to Rask. If the Blues win, O'Reilly is 2nd in points, and Schwartz and Tarasenko are 2nd and 3rd in goals, respectively. O'Reilly has 7 points in the Final with four goals in the last three games. Tarasenko has 3 points in the series (all goals), but none in 3 of the last 4. Schwartz has 2 points in the series (both assists) and no points in the last four games.

 

O'Reilly is probably the Blues' Conn leader and is making that late push (4 pts vs WPG, 5 pts vs DAL, 5 pts vs SJ, 7 pts vs BOS), but to me, no single player has made more impact in these playoffs than Rask has start to finish. Tuukka has a 1.93 GAA, .938 SV% and really hasn't had a true dud game in these playoffs. He's allowed more than 3 goals just once in Game 4 at Toronto, a game Boston still won.

 

Rask has also been spectacular in series clinchers. Tuukka stopped 32 of 33 against Toronto in Game 7 and posted shutouts against Columbus (39 saves) and Carolina (24 saves).

 

I don't know if the media will do it (there's been plenty of O'Reilly buzz over the last few games that I kinda don't see how that won't affect their choice should the Blues win), but if I had my vote, it'd go to Rask either way.

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9 hours ago, Ice_Cap said:

You know what's annoying? When people cheerypick the worst of your fanbase and pretend like that's the norm. Think it would be hard to find jerkass Blackhawks fans if I look through comments sections?

Where in my comment did I imply that all Leafs/Raptors fans were like that? By mentioning that it's on Facebook, I'm explicitly saying that it's the worst of the worst. Everyone knows that Facebook comments on major media pages are an absolute cesspool.

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Rask should be awarded the Conn Smythe no matter who wins game 7.

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1 hour ago, Still MIGHTY said:

Does anyone think Tuukka will pull a Giguere and win the Conn Smythe no matter what happens on Wednesday?

 

He should, but he won’t. Your analysis is strong regarding both positions. If the Blues win it’ll go to O’Reilly as you said. I’m also glad you didn’t even include Binnington. Despite what NBC wants everyone to think, his stats don’t even warrant him being in the conversation. He’s been okay in the playoffs and pretty horrible when he’s been bad.

 

Ultimately, I don’t think we ever see a losing player take home the MVP in a major sport again unless it’s a completely unexpected story like Giguere carrying that team. Rask has already shown an ability to get his team to this point, so they won’t give it to him. Basically, the LeBron paradox

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3 hours ago, speedy said:

 

Same, hell of a series, hell of an ending. One thing I'll never forget, living next to The Garden in those days I went for a walk after game 6 just to get some air and soak in the last bits of a SCF - the Chicago fans I did run in to were almost apologetic, couldn't have been nicer. Crazy, really. Sure the winning of a Cup moments earlier will make anyone happy, but I can't imagine most fan bases parading through the defeated town with that kind of "we've seen some :censored:, too" camaraderie in that situation.  

 

The Bruins damn near forced Game 7, and Bergeron and Hossa, to name only two (but I may as well name the two most important forwards), were so battered by the end of that series that it would have been a pure war of attrition and really could have gone either way. I felt as much relief as I did joy.

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For those rooting against the Bruins, I'll just point out Game 7 is on June 12.

 

Game 7 of the 2009 Final was also on June 12. The road team won that game.

 

"So, Kramer, you're saying a team wearing black, gold, and white won that game?"

 

... :censored:

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1 hour ago, the admiral said:

 

The Bruins damn near forced Game 7, and Bergeron and Hossa, to name only two (but I may as well name the two most important forwards), were so battered by the end of that series that it would have been a pure war of attrition and really could have gone either way. I felt as much relief as I did joy.

 

Yeah, I'd say Patrice Bergeron was a bit hurt. Considering what happened with Hossa, too, I can only imagine the pain he endured as well.

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18 hours ago, Seadragon76 said:

Um, have you guys forgotten that after the last pasting the Bruins gave the Blues, St. Louis took two in a row?

If anything, this motivates them to get it done in Boston on Wednesday night.

But they needed to get that elusive home Stanley Cup win in game 4. This time it’s not at home.

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4 hours ago, the admiral said:

 

The Bruins damn near forced Game 7, and Bergeron and Hossa, to name only two (but I may as well name the two most important forwards), were so battered by the end of that series that it would have been a pure war of attrition and really could have gone either way. I felt as much relief as I did joy.

 

That's not all you felt during that series.

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It'll be cool to see Leonard push the Raptors to a championship, but the inevitable jeering from Leafs-haters about the NBA team doing what the Maple Leafs couldn't and the Raptors' title being a harbinger for the death of hockey in Toronto is, well, I can do without it

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20 hours ago, the admiral said:

It'll be cool to see Leonard push the Raptors to a championship, but the inevitable jeering from Leafs-haters about the NBA team doing what the Maple Leafs couldn't and the Raptors' title being a harbinger for the death of hockey in Toronto is, well, I can do without it

 

I'm just game for Toronto FC fans to act like they're being ignored for their recent title.

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