April 22, 2011


Although it is impossible to truly follow all of the games here are some reflections and opinions from last night’s playoff action:

 1)    Choke Jobs – Three series were in action on Thursday, and all three are staring at rather large comebacks, or choke jobs, depending how you look at it. The Sharks blasted the Kings in the 3rd period to take a 3-1 series lead, capitalizing on the momentum they gained from the comeback from 4 goals down in game 3 (which should have put the Kings up 2-1 in the series).  Just two games ago, the Bruins looked done and I was calling them playoff failures. Now, the series is tied at two games heading back to Boston. Montreal fans are going crazy, and now Boston believes they are every bit as good as they were supposed to be.  Confidence issues and questions about beating the Blackhawks have to be be going through the heads of the Vancouver Canucks players, especially Roberto Luongo. The Canucks goalie stood on his head in game 3 to give the heavily favored Canucks a 3-0 series lead. Now, just two games later, some are wondering if Luongo should even start game 6 in Chicago.  Two blowouts later, the Hawks are believing they can do what the Flyers did to the Bruins last year, and come back from an 0-3 deficit to take the series.

2)     Live and die with your best – No matter how bad Roberto Luongo has been in the last two games (.750 save %) you have to play him in game 6. It is on the road in a hostile environment, but he has played very well in Chicago over the years. Not starting him would show desperation and weakness. Getting over the Blackhawks hump looks much harder today, than it did Sunday night. The only way to do it, is with your best!
3)     OT goals – When was the last time an overtime ended with a really nice goal that showcased skill? Too often OT winners are decided because of mental blunders and bad bounces. P.K. Subban added to this list last night with his brutal line change that caused a 3 on 1. The Bruins did not score on the 3 on 1, but did immediately after as the Habs were scrambling to find their defensive zone coverage (Watch it here:  http://www.nhl.com/ice/recap.htm?id=2010030134). Both OT winners from Wednesday were brutal. James Neal’s shot from the boards is one Dwayne Roloson will relive many times, (Watch it here: http://www.nhl.com/ice/recap.htm?id=2010030144) and Marian Gaborik’s  error in taking the puck away from his goalie will haunt the Rangers as they are now down 3-1 (Watch it here: http://www.nhl.com/ice/recap.htm?id=2010030114).  OT is great, but can we just see something remotely close to a brilliant play to end a game? Think back even to Patrick Kane’s goal to end the Stanley Cup last year….. utterly horrible! (Watch it here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xdVn42-vOt8)

Here is the schedule for today’s games.
Buffalo @ Philadelphia 7:30pm
Nashville @ Anaheim  10:00pm

Tweets tonight of the Flyers/Sabres game @getrealhockey.
Follow my articles and tweets @Chyz1

-Mark Chyz

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