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The Rite of Spring (AKA 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs Thread)


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11 hours ago, ninersdd said:

Hopefully another 3-1 collapse happens for Vegas this year!

 

I thought Vegas fans were insufferable after last year's meltdown.. if this happens again, the Vegas fans are going to become extremely rabid.

 

The sad thing? Both meltdowns come from the same problem: Failure to finish the job.

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51 minutes ago, Seadragon76 said:

 

I thought Vegas fans were insufferable after last year's meltdown.. if this happens again, the Vegas fans are going to become extremely rabid.

 

The sad thing? Both meltdowns come from the same problem: Failure to finish the job.

Honestly, it's good for the fans to suffer a bit. Their first season gave many of those new to following the sport closely unrealistic expectations for what it means to be a hockey fan, in the long term. I thought their draft would produce a batter product than we'd seen during most of the expansion era, but I never dreamed they'd see a SCF year one.

The trade off is that a lot of their supporters are having a really uncomfortable learning experience with disappointment. They're going to lose their collective minds when the team eventually fails to make the playoffs. Say what you want about Buffalo, Columbus, or Toronto fans, but they've got some of the most dedicated people I've ever seen.

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Carey Price is playing surprisingly well in these playoffs and I have no idea how.

 

At his age, he struggled to win a single game this season, he let in 2 goals in 4 shots in his practise return with the Laval Rocket. With expectations at an all-time low, he's playing shockingly well in almost all 5 Habs games in this series versus the Leafs.

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Holy heck, the Wild have forced a Game 7? I've only been halfway paying attention to the playoffs because of life stressors and what not, but man, that'd be hilarious if Minnesota pulled the wool over the eyes of a Cup favorite in the first round no less!

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1 hour ago, Crabcake said:

The Leafs absolutely, resolutely refuse to make anything easy on themselves. 

 

If/when the Leafs collapse, we can look back on the turning point that was Game 5 in OT. That no-look pass by Galchenyuk that set up a Habs 2 on 0 for the win no one expected.

 

The Habs team was beaten down. In their minds, they were already making plans on what to do in their inevitably early offseason vacation. Price let in a weak goal that forced OT. The game was in the bag for Toronto against a defeated team, and yet they still found a way to :censored: it up.

 

This is amazing to see the Habs get life back in their game like this.

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With the final four established by regular season points, here's a look at the possible brackets:

 

If Montreal wins, the final brackets are set:
#1 seed - winner  - COL (82 pts)  VEG (82 pts)
#2 seed - winner - CAR (80) TB (75)
#3 seed - winner - BOS (73) NYI (71)
#4 seed - winner - WIN (63) or MON (59)

Things are a little less clear if Toronto wins (necessary series results in parenthesis):

#1 seed - winner - COL (82)  VEG (82)
#2 seed CAR (80 - CAR W), TOR (77 TOR W, TB W), TB (75 TB W, WIN W)
#3 seed TOR (77 - TOR W, CAR W), TB (75 TB W, TOR W), BOS /NYI Winner (CAR W WIN W)
#4 seed BOS/NYI Winner (TOR W) or WIN

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I mean, the Avs are the Cup favorites for a reason. It's entirely merited. They're the only team I don't give the Lightning at least a 50% chance of beating.

 

It's actually why I really hope Toronto doesn't finish their meltdown. Obviously the Lightning need to do their part along the way, but if the Maple Leafs go out, odds are the Lightning need to beat both Boston AND Colorado to win the Cup, whereas if the Leafs win their division, the Lightning would only need to face Boston OR Colorado (and obviously Toronto). Colorado and Boston are two of the three best teams in the NHL. It's not impossible but boy would it be daunting.

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