At the end of every round I’ll do a Bests & Worsts type of thing. Ready…. set…. go…
This could also be called Biggest Upset and Most Tencious Team or Biggest Tank. There is not one sane hockey fan that would give Best Series to anyone other than The Montreal Canadiens and the Washington Capitals.
I don’t know 1 single person, expert or otherwise that said Montreal would win a game. not a single game. CBC announcer Mike Milbury said that if Washington could sweep in 3, they would. I said they would be out in 4. But as soon as they won the first game – I changed my tune.
My fiance, who has been a Habs fan since birth – literally birth - gave up when they fell behind 3 to 1. But I didn’t. I knew after that first win they could take this to game 7. But nobody – not even me and all my French Canadian blind faith – thought they would WIN in 7. And what a spectacular last game. It was an edge-of-your-seat, nailbiter right till the end!
Best Kept Secret
Steve Bernier – where the hell have you been all season?! Bernier stepped up his game in the playoffs and became a point earner, which the Canucks definitely need going in against Chicago now. Especially if Alex Burrows doesn’t find his legs… err shots… now that he’s off the Sedins’ line.
A year ago, while playing for the Vancouver Canucks, Taylor Pyatt earned the nickname Taylor Pylon. Well, at least the male fans called him that. The female ones just stared into his pretty blue eyes and didn’t care what his name was. Taylor was a slow, sluggish and couldn’t make a play or get a point. But when he left Vancouver, he left the Pylon behind. In Phoenix Pyatt was a faster, smarter player who could score. When you look at his performance this time last year versus this year – Pyatt is the comeback kid.
All hail Saint-Halak! Let’s face it every goalie had some stellar and devastating games (well, except Brodeur who had one decent moment and the rest was epic fail). But Halak kept the Canadiens alive – the 19th placed team – against Ovechkin, Semin and the rest of the 1st place team in the league. In the last 3 games of the Washington-Montreal series, Halak stopped 131 of 134 shots! And Semin, a scoring machine, did not get one goal on Jaroslav Halak even though he took over 30 good shots.
Worst Reffing Calls
There are 3 here that deserve mention;
3) the disallowed goal in the Vancouver-Los Angeles series where Daniel Sedin was accused of kicking it in. There was 0 kicking motion.
2) The penalty against a Coyote after Holmstrom grabbed the Phoenix player and pulled him down on top of him. Also, NOT calling Zetterberg “accidentally” knocking the net off to keep Phoenix from scoring.
1) Not kicking Marion Hossa out of the game after his boarding/hit from behind on a Nashville Predator. RIDICULOUS. He was totally channeling Ovechkin who had not only got kicked from a regular season game but also a 2 game suspension. Hossa should have been booted – and because he wasn’t he went on to score and dash Nashville’s hopes unfairly.
Best Reffing Calls
Disallowing the Ovechkin goal in game 7 against the Canadiens.
Disallowing the Canadiens goal in game 7 against the Capitals.
Both of these were clearly goalie interference but it takes a good eye to catch it and balls to call it in a game 7 game.
Worst Playoff Beards
It pains me to say this because everything else about him (his looks, his attitude, his game) is perfect but… Pittsburgh Penguins’ Sidney Crosby. Also Chicago Blackhawks’ Patrick Kane. It’s Crosby’s third playoff run and after 6 games he still has less hair on his face than a hippie’s armpit. Kane’s hair growth is even more pathetic resembling that of a 12 year old boy. The difference is that everything about Patrick Kane – his weight, his face, his emotional state (if you ask cab drivers, anyway) – resembles a 12 year-old boy so at least he’s consistent. Crosby. on the other hand, has manly looks, body, attitude but not facial hair.
Best Playoff Beards
Another tie – this time between Vancouver Canucks Kevin Bieksa and Montreal Canadiens’ Brian Gionta. Bieksa’s is the perfect amount of growth for a Round 1 beard. On top of that it’s well groomed and evenly distributed. Not to mention it only draws more attention to his pretty blue eyes and full lips (are any dudes still reading this…? Whatever. I don’t care).
Brian Gionta is used to facial hair, having a form of it through most of the regular season. But he, just like Kevin, has managed to keep the playoff beard nicely groomed and it gives him a rough but sexy look. Good job Gionta!
Scariest Playoff Beard
The only thing I like about the Detroit Red Wings is Todd Bertuzzi. I don’t want the Wings to make it past the Sharks but if they do make it to the Stanley Cup final Todd Bertuzzi may have to watch from the bench. It would be hard to play with a playoff beard tangled in your skate blades. Seriously – Todd grew a Grizzly Adams-worthy beard about 15 hours after they snagged a playoff spot. It’s crazy. Someone needs to get Bertuzzi a grooming kit stat!