For Vancouver Canucks fans still following along, there was some dram-a on the first night of what amounts to the Stanley Cup quarter-finals. Some disappointment in one NHL market and some dominance, almost spoiled by great goaltending, in another.
I’m surprised by the level of forgetfulness for commentators so far in the postseason as it relates to great netminding. Absolutely Jake Oettinger was outstanding for the Dallas Stars in the first round, but greatest performance ever?! Get serious. Plus he lost.
Here’s just one for you, and you won’t need to remind Vancouver Canucks Head Coach Bruce Boudreau. Jaroslav Halak in Game-1 and then the final three games of the 2010 opening round series when the 8th-seeded Montreal Canadiens, or should I say Halak, knocked off the top-seeded Washington Capitals, a team that finished 33 points ahead of their adversary in the regular season.
This after actually struggling in a game-and-a-half during the series and being replaced briefly by a young guy named Carey Price. Price wasn’t quite ready for prime time.
Halak ended up winning Game-seven 2-1 while making 41 saves. He made 53 saves in a 4-1 win in Game-6, after 37 stops in a 2-1 win in Game-5.
There are dozens of other examples in just the last thirty years. Get real people.
The Vancouver Canucks faithful could probably think of a few on their own.
Uh oh. The Florida Panthers, the President’s Trophy winners with the best record in the NHL this season at 122 points, have gone 0-for-21 this postseason on the power play. It ultimately didn’t matter in getting past the Washington Capitals in six games in the first round, but special teams jumped up and bit them against the Tampa Bay Lightning in Game-one of the second round.
The two-time defending champion Lightning went 3-for-6 on the power play while the Panthers went 0-for-3 on Tuesday night.
Time to click, and time to stay out of the penalty box.
The Bolts were supposed to be the team with a bit of a let down after going seven games against the Toronto Maple Leafs in a series that ended Saturday. Not so much.
Oooo, that’s a pun. In what might be one of the greatest goaltending performances in playoff history …. kidding.
Jordan Binnington was really, really good for the St. Louis Blues, yet it wasn’t enough as the dominant top-seeded Colorado Avalanche prevailed in overtime of Game-one on Tuesday night 3-2 in Denver.
The main reason the game reached overtime was because of Binnington. The Avalanche then outshot the Blues in the extra session 13-0. It helped a little that there was a brief carry-over power play for Colorado to start the period, but still.
Defenceman Josh Manson, a nifty little trade deadline pick-up from the Anaheim Ducks by Avalanche GM Joe Sakic, scored the game winner with a seeing-eye wrister at the 8:02 mark of OT. Colorado out-shot St. Louis for the game 54-25.
Just to wrap up a bit of a theme for this piece: do we really need to remind everyone the name of the game is ‘goalie’?
Battle of Alberta Wednesday night. Enjoy the Hockey Action!!