ATD #9 Jim Robson Semifinal: #2 Trail Smoke Eaters vs. #3 Kootenay Ice

05-27-2008, 12:38 AM
Trail Smoke Eaters
Coach: Scotty Bowman
Assistant Coach: Claude Ruel
Captain: Bryan Trottier
Alternate Captain: Art Ross, Jim Peplinski

Aurele Joliat - Bryan Trottier - Ken Hodge
Keith Tkachuk - Igor Larionov - Martin St. Louis
Dean Prentice - Rick MacLeish - Shane Doan
Dave Balon - Joel Otto - Jim Peplinski
Henrik Zetterberg

Jacques Laperriere - Harry Cameron
Art Ross - Leo Reise Jr.
Dollard St. Laurent - Joe Simpson
Don Awrey

Bill Durnan
Charlie Hodge

Aurele Joliat - Bryan Trottier - Ken Hodge
Joe Simpson - Harry Cameron

Keith Tkachuk - Igor Larionov - Martin St. Louis
Jacques Laperriere - Art Ross

Dean Prentice - Joel Otto
Jacques Laperriere - Dollard St. Laurent

Dave Balon - Bryan Trottier
Art Ross - Leo Reise Jr.

Kootenay Ice
Coach: Anatoli Tarasov

Valeri Kharlamov - Vladimir Petrov - Boris Mikhailov
Dennis Hull - Cooney Weiland - Barney Stanley
Yvon Lambert - Don Luce - Cecil Dillon
Steve Vickers - Mike Ricci - Kevin Dineen
Mike Rogers, Barry Pederson

Valeri Vasiliev - Vladimir Lutchenko
Ray Bourque - Ferm Flaman
Terry Harper - Ron Greschner
Steve Chiasson

Mike Richter
Al Rollins

Valeri Kharlamov - Vladimir Petrov - Boris Mikhailov
Vladimir Lutchenko - Ray Bourque

Steve Vickers/Yvon Lambert - Cooney Weiland - Cecil Dillon
Ron Greschner - Ray Bourque

Don Luce - Cecil Dillon
Ray Bourque - Fern Flaman

Cooney Weiland - Kevin Dineen
Valeri Vasiliev - Terry Harper

Evil Sather
05-27-2008, 10:14 AM
PP1: Kharlamov-Petrov-Mikhailov Lutchenko-Bourque
PP2: Vickers/Lambert-Weiland-Dillon Greschner-Bourque

PK1: Luce-Dillon Bourque-Flaman
PK2: Weiland-Dineen Vasiliev-Harper

I'd ask everyone not to vote on this series as I will be out of town and away from a computer until Thursday morning so I'll be unable to argue my point. Anyone wanna take over for a couple days until I get back? GBC? You live for this time of year :nod:.

But if you don't and people don't wait to vote I understand. Best of luck to Shawnmullin in any case, you have a solid team (albeit one with holes I will ruthlessly exploit :D ).

05-27-2008, 05:55 PM
PP1: Kharlamov-Petrov-Mikhailov Lutchenko-Bourque
PP2: Vickers/Lambert-Weiland-Dillon Greschner-Bourque

PK1: Luce-Dillon Bourque-Flaman
PK2: Weiland-Dineen Vasiliev-Harper

I'd ask everyone not to vote on this series as I will be out of town and away from a computer until Thursday morning so I'll be unable to argue my point. Anyone wanna take over for a couple days until I get back? GBC? You live for this time of year :nod:.

But if you don't and people don't wait to vote I understand. Best of luck to Shawnmullin in any case, you have a solid team (albeit one with holes I will ruthlessly exploit :D ).

When is voting due anyway?

Best of luck to you too sir. You have a solid team... albeit one with holes I will ruthlessly exploit :P A battle between Cranbrook and Trail! Not too shabby. Old rivals and an easy travel schedule.

First thing that strikes me here is that I think we each have a couple of obvious advantages.

I think the clearest edge the Smoke Eaters have is in goal. Mike Ricther is better suited for back-up duty in this draft than anything else. He had one very strong playoff run in his career. But cosnsistency is an issue there. He was never the best goalie in the NHL and I'd suggest rarely even in the top 3 during his career. Richter was magnificent in one World Cup, but tell me what goaltender hasn't had a handful of great games in a row? It was a legendary performance, but it doesn't match up with the rest of his career. On the other hand, Bill Durnan is one of the best goalies of all time. He was the top goaltender in the NHL for almost his entire career. We're talking about an elite starter versus at the best a lower tier starter and more likely a good backup.

Look at Richter's voting history...

89-90: 7th place in Vezina voting (1 third place vote), No all-star votes
90-91: 3rd place in Vezina voting (1 first, 1 second, 5 thirds), 5th in all-star votes, 4th in Caldver voting
91-92: 9th in Vezina votes (1 third), 7th in all-star votes
92-93: No Vezina votes, No all-star votes
93-94: 6th place in Vezina voting (1 second, 5 thirds), 4th place in all-star votes
94-95: No Vezina votes (14 other goalies got votes), No all-star votes
95-96: No Vezina votes (11 other goalies got votes), No all-star votes
96-97: 6th place in Vezina voting (2 thirds), 10th place in all-star votes (1 third)
97-98: No Vezina votes (9 other goalies got votes), No all-star votes
98-99: No Vezina votes (9 other goalies got votes), No all-star votes
99-00: No Vezina votes (10 other goalies got votes), No all-star votes
00-01: No Vezina votes (12 other goalies got votes), No all-star votes
01-02: No Vezina votes (11 other goalies got votes), No all-star votes
02-03: doesn't count only played 13 games

Over his career, Mike Ricther was never on the post-season all-star team. He only received votes four times. Once 4th, once 5th, once 7th and once 10th.

He never won a Vezina and only received votes five times. Once 3rd, twice 6th, once 7th and once 9th.

According to both those measuring sticks, Mike Ricther was never the best goalie in the world. He was never even second best. He may have been third for one season. He was only worthy of even getting votes for either achievement in four or five seasons out of his long career. In the years he didn't, he was essentially not even considered top 10 in the league.

On the other hand, Bill Durnan was voted to the first all-star team 6 out of the 7 seasons he played in the NHL. He was recognized as being the best goalie in the league every year he played in it but one. He had the best GAA (the Vezina trophy) six out of the seven seasons he played in the NHL.

-6 time first all-star
-6 time Vezina winner
-He finished second in Calder voting in 44
-He finished third in Hart voting in 46
-He finished second in Hart voting in 49
-He finished fifth in Hart voting in 50

It's a monumental mis-match in my favour. The record of achievement isn't in the same ballpark IMO.

Coaching is another distinct advantage for me given that I have the greatest and winningest coach of all time teamed with his long time assistant (and a cup winner as a head coach himself) on a team that suits their winning style of play. Bowman will get the most out of these players and develop a winning strategy.

Up front the Smokies I think have superior depth. The Russian 5 are a strong unit, but at this point pervious chemistry pretty much goes out the window. That's great early in the regular season, but by now all these great players should've adapted to each other. I'm sure in a regular season and playoff round Joliat/Trots/Hodge have become a unit too. Especially when they're a line that suits each other's skills. There's more scoring and more physical play from all my forward lines than what the ice can bring. I think physical play will be a definate advantage on my sides when it comes to forwards. I think my fourth line brings a lot more to the table with guys who can play two ways, hit hard and score more than almost any fourth line in the draft. I think almost my entire forward group is defensively responsible. There are maybe one or two guys you could point to that aren't known for being able to check their hat and play at both ends of the ice. So even if the Ice have an advantage on the blue line, my forwards are clearly capeable of contributing to an elite team defensive scheme.

Up the middle I'm clearly stronger IMO with Trottier/Larionov/MacLeish/Otto vs. Petrov/Weiland/Luce/Ricci... the most obvious advantages ther are Trottier vs. Petrov and Otto vs. Ricci IMO. However I think I win those match ups one through four. That being said he definately has an advantage in terms of third line RW. Dillon vs. Doan is certainly at this point a plus for the Ice.

On the other hand, the Ice have a superior defensive top 4 and I won't even try to dispute that. Bourque is clearly the best defenceman and probably the best player in this series. However, his advantage there is because of a particularely strong defensive top four that I think weakens him elsewhere in the line-up. Is my top four as strong? Absolutely not. But my defence is a well balanced group built for a well balanced team. I don't put too much pressure on any pairing. For example, Lapperiere will be the most used ES defenceman and PK defenceman, but Simpson and Cameron carry the PP duties. No one will get overworked or exposed here. The Ice have an advantage on D more so than I would suggest we have a disadvantage.

The Ice are a very tough, challenging team with a lot of players I like. I think they'll be tough to beat. However, clearly better netminding, superior depth at forward and the best coaching in the draft (IMO) should make up for a disadvantage against their defence and any possible chemistry advantage they may still have with the Russian 5.

05-27-2008, 07:47 PM
Two things immediately spring to mind when I look at these lineups.

One is the huge mismatch that is Durnan vs Richter.

The second is the awesomeness that is Bowman vs Tarasov.

Nalyd Psycho
05-29-2008, 05:03 AM
An underrated match-up...

-The Smoke Eater's defense isn't overly impressive, but Laperriere may be able to handle that tight play of the Ice's big unit. That said, Durnan will have to be in full Octopus mode.

-The Ice's top four is sick and blows the Smoke Eaters out of the water. But the Smoke Eaters have much better depth up front.

-I have no idea what is the deciding factor.

God Bless Canada
05-29-2008, 05:48 PM
This is a really interesting series. If you're looking strictly at a forwards vs. forwards, defence vs. defence, etc., match-up situation, the only comparison that is close is up front. Give the Ice a big edge on the blue-line, give the Smokies a big edge in net and behind the bench.

Both teams can score. The Ice have the two solid scoring lines, and a strong offensive player on the third in Cecil Dillon. They can also some good offence from the defence. Trail also has excellent offence on their top two lines, and I think they're deeper, with scoring from the third line, and possibly some the fourth line with Balon. (Kootenay definitely doesn't have a player with Balon's offensive ability on the fourth line). Trail does have a lot of defencemen who are capable of jumping into the rush, and providing some offence.

The blue-line is excellent for the Ice. The second pairing is really the first pairing. Bourque-Flaman is one of the best in the draft. I'd take both of the Ice's pairings over either Trail tandem. And the Ice have Terry Harper as a rock on the third pairing.

I really like Trail's team defence. Their blue-line corps is likely the worst left in the draft, but they have excellent team defence. Their third line, as far as a two-way line goes, is unmatched. All three guys can score; they're all rock-solid in their own zone. Dave Balon is an offensive threat for the fourth line. (And he's excellent defensively, too). I like the overall team defence on the Rangers, and it is better than what the Smokies have, but it's not as big as it should be.

A big edge in net for the Smokies. Durnan is excellent. Richter should be a back-up. As I've said before, I think Al Rollins is the better goalie. But he's still a big step beneath Durnan. The brick wall defence for the Ice will be handy, but it'll be tougher to handle the offensive depth that the Smokies possess.

Coaching is interesting. Normally I'd give Bowman a big edge over Tarasov. Not as much in this series, because Tarasov has his boys for this draft. But Bowman also has his reunion with Ruel. I said from the start that Trail had the best coaching in the draft. I don't see any reason to think otherwise.

05-29-2008, 10:43 PM
In regards to my defensive group. I realize I don't have a first or second round worth guy on this crew, but I still think theyr'e a strong, well balanced defensive unit that compliments my forwards very well.

Lapperiere: Not a top 10 #1, but a guy who was the top defenceman on a few cup winning teams, a Norris winner and a multiple time post season all-star. He had a fantastic reach and one of the best poke checks in the game. He was strong and could handle physicality, but he was disciplined.

Pair him with Harry Cameron and I think you have a very interesting pairing. He was incredibly talented. You're talking about a guy put up 88 goals and 139 points in 128 NHL games. He had more than a PPG in an era where they didn't count as many assists. He scored at a ridiculous clip. Cameron is not a one dimensional defenceman. Even though he was a dynamic offensive defenceman, he is also known for having a punishing physical dimension and tremendous competativeness. He's a multiple time cup winner and the first guy to ever score what is now called a Gordie Howe hat trick.

Art Ross and Leo Reise Jr again creates a pairing of a goal scoring, quick defenceman with a defensive rock. Looking just at Ross' NHA career you can see he definately had the ability to put the puck in the net...

In 131 NHA games he scored 58 goals. He had 16 goals in 18 games one season. 11 goals in 19 in another. And we're not talking about the start of his career. Ross also put up 10 goals in 8 CAHL games. He scored 12 in 17 games in the MHL. 8 in 10 games in the ECAHA. Remember we're just talking about goals not points. These are impressive totals.

From his Legends bio:

Ross recorded 85 goals in 167 regular-season games and provided stability and savvy in the defensive zone. He won the Stanley Cup twice as a player

He rapidly earned the distinction of being one of the top rushing defensemen in the game.

Ross's play attracted the attention of the Kenora Thistles, who worked out a loan agreement with Brandon in time for their Stanley Cup challenge against the Montreal Wanderers in January 1907. During the two-game set, he received numerous ovations from the Montreal crowd. Although he didn't score, Ross made a number of quality offensive rushes that contributed to Kenora's Stanley Cup win. A year later, Ross's services were purchased by the Wanderers in a move that strengthened an already formidable outfit. Ross was a key reason the Red Bands finished at the top of the Eastern Canada Amateur Hockey Association standings and then beat back the Stanley Cup challenges from Winnipeg, Toronto and Edmonton.

So I think it's fairly obvious that Ross was one of the best rushing and producing defencemen of his era. However, what put me over the top on Ross is that he also brings other elements to the game. For example, also from his Legends bio:

He followed with two years in Ottawa, where he introduced the "kitty bar the door" defensive alignment that baffled teams preferring a freewheeling offensive game.

As a player he introduced a defensive system that baffled offensive systems. This is not a one dimensional player. This is a guy with a true understanding for the game and hockey sense beyond his peers. His understanding of the game helped him become an innovator in coaching and management as well. He was a leader on the ice and then a leader in the sport.

So far we're looking at two dimensions of his game, but lets also not forget that Ross can bring a physical edge to the game as well.

He was a fearless and rugged defenceman and never shied away from a fight. One of his most legendary was with Minnie McGiffen of the Toronto Blueshirts in which both players were arrested for assault and referee Cooper Smeaton almost got arrested.

So Ross is one of the top rushing defencemen of his era, he had a wonderful understanding of the game and hockey sense, he innovated a defensive system while still a player that baffled offensive teams, he was was fearless and rugged enough to get into the kind of fight that is intense enough to get him arrested and charged. He's a mutiple cup winning star. He was a superstar in his era and a leader who went on to contribute to the game off the ice as well.

Pair him with Leo Reise Jr.... a multiple time post-season all star and a rock in his own zone.

With the Wings, Reise played his best hockey, pumping home two overtime goals during a bitterly fought semi-finals series against the Leafs in 1950 ... During those years, Gordie Howe, Ted Lindsay and Red Kelly enjoyed the headlines while Reise worked in the background, performing a great deal of the spadework that kept the Wings at the top of the standings.

An all-star defenseman who performed capably in the shadows of such Hall of Famers as (Black) Jack Stewart, Red Kelly, Bill Quackenbush and Marcel Pronovost, Leo Reise played a quietly effective game and owned a reputation for scoring clutch goals, especially during the Stanley Cup playoffs ... Reise netted only four goals in 70 regular-season games, but the offensive outburst wasn't surprising. During his career, he averaged a goal every 18 games during regular-season play, but tallied once every six games in Stanley Cup competition ... A stay-at-home defenseman known for his fierce bodychecks ... "He was very businesslike and played his position very well," teammate Marty Pavelich said of the six-foot, 205-pound Reise.

Now into the third pairing... we have I thinik one of the most underrated defenceman for a long time on this thing who has started to get more respect. Again a terrific rushing defenceman who can get the puck up the ice and contribute on the score sheet. A man who Newsy Lalonde called the best hockey player in the world. He was known as a scoring blue line, but also given credit for being a fierce competator and being able to hold his own physically.

Three time WCHL First Team All-Star
One time WCHL Second Team All-Star
57 goals, 42 assists in 113 WCHL games
8th all-time scorer in WCHL history as a defenceman

Before he was sent overseas he captained the 1916 Allan Cup champions 61st Battalion team of Winnipeg ... winning a Western Hockey League First Team All-Star berth in 1921-22. He was named to the First Team on three occasions and to the Second Team once. At the time, "Newsy" Lalonde called Simpson the greatest living hockey player ... "Bullet" Joe Simpson was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1962.

Simpson was a great skater, a defenceman whose end-to-end rushes wowed fans wherever he went. The nickname "Bullet Joe" was well deserved and his fame well understood by everyone who watched him play the game at another level than most.

Stan Fischler: (

Simpsons was a lightweight at 155 pounds, but he tore into the foe with the confidence of a 200-pounder.

Once again with the balance I was trying to create I paired Simpson's speed and rushing ability with a winner and defensive rock in Dollard St. Laurent.

One of the others included St. Laurent who settled onto the Habs' blueline corps as a stay-at-home regular. Over the six seasons that followed, he doled out tough bodychecks and adhered to defensive zone fundamentals in textbook fashion. His efforts contributed to three-straight Stanley Cup victories between 1956 and 1958 ... After the third championship, St. Laurent was sold to the Chicago Blackhawks ... In 1960-61, the troops pulled together and finally ended the championship drought by ousting the Red Wings in the finals ... St. Laurent continued to clear creases for the Hawks until the end of the 1961-62 campaign ... defenseman Doug Harvey, lobbied to have him transferred to the Rangers, but a deal couldn't be worked out. In the meantime, St. Laurent took a hard fall to the ice in Quebec, breaking his leg and ending his aspirations to make it back to the top.

Again I'm not suggesting my group is as powerful a unit as the Kootenay group. They are a fantastic group espectially in the top four. However, I built a defence to compliment my team.

I have a forward unit that I'd say is full of two-way, scrappy players. My defence was built with again... balance in mind. Each pairing had a rusher and scorer with a defensive rock. All the guys here are known winners.

The other thing is that by balancing out the defence this way, I don't put too much pressure on any one guy to do everything. The key players on the power play are Cameron and Simpson. On the PK it's Lapperiere, Reise Jr and St. Laurent. The ice time should be well balanced and there are guys here who can take care of every job on the ice.

I clearly made a sacrifice by picking Trottier and Durnan before I picked a #1 defenceman. The sacrifice was not having a Robinson/Park/Chelios level top defenceman. However, I don't think Lapperiere is a huge step back... and I think Durnan is such a monumental advantage over Richter that I'm glad I did that. I also think ag uy like Trottier started our plans towards creating a defensviely responsible forward unit that can play in tandem with our D to limit chances and make life difficult on the opposition.

All I'm doing in this post is saying that I think our D is well built and strong enough to push us forward. I know Kootenay has the advantage, but I don't think their defensive advantage is as substantial as our goaltending advantage...

Add that to the superior depth I think the Smokies have up front, the two-way play edge, the grit edge and the coaching edge... I think that should be enough to win a 6 or 7 game series with a very tough and challenging Ice team.

05-29-2008, 11:13 PM
I agree with Nalyd and GBC that this is an underrated match up though. There are lots of very interesting elements to this series. I hope when Sather gets back we can get a little more talk going. Some of these other series' are loaded with co-GMs mucking up the waters ;)

Evil Sather
06-01-2008, 09:55 AM
This one is my big regret, I've had like 30 second bursts where I could use the internet the last week or so and as such couldn't put together any sort of defense of my case, which I think I could have done.

I didn't even vote because I'm not just going to make picks without taking the time to make a detailed analysis, it's dishonest to just pick randomly looking at rosters for 5 seconds.

I'd like to thank Trail for a good series ahead of time and predict the voters will take them in 6, though I would take the Ice in 7 ;). GG sir.

06-01-2008, 02:47 PM
Smoke Eaters off a great start

Infront of a an enthusiastic home crowd the Smoke Eaters didn't hesitate to kick start the scoring. With eight minutes into the game Larionov found an open Martin St.Louis. Richter got down early and the former-MVP snapped it upstairs. Trottier added one later and the period ended with a score of 2-0 in favour of Trail. During the second period Bill Durnan made several strong saves in order to keep his team in lead but he could do nothing against a great tic-tac-toe play by the Russian five. Lutchenko to Petrov , Petrov to Mikhailov and it's in. Kootenay continued their their comeback try but Rick MacLeish got his name on the scorsheet right before the siren sounded. Trail extended the lead by 2 more goals by Joliat and Laperriere. Bourque scored late in the third but the goal had little impact on the result.

Trail wins the game 5-2 and leads the series 1-0

1st period
8:02 - St.Louis (Larionov,Ross)
15:14 - Trottier (Cameron)
2nd period
6:33 - Mikhailov (Petrov,Lutchenko)
19:48 - MacLeish (Doan)
3rd period
6:14 - Joliat (Trottier,Laperriere)
11:04 - Laperriere (Hodge,Simpson)
17:44 - Bourque (unassisted)

the rest of the write-ups will be there by tomorrow.

06-01-2008, 03:12 PM
Sather... I voted for Saturday in hopes you could make your case. Sorry it didn't work out. I still really like your team.

06-03-2008, 01:39 PM
Sorry for the delay , bat watching the wings game 'til around 6:30am and see them losing kind of pissed me off ^^

Eat that Trail!

After a bad start in game one the Ice were looking for venegance. In a great defensive team effort they managed to shut out Trail and tie the series. Bodies were flying everywhere in the first period , most notably Ray Bourque's hit on Art Ross near center ice. Reise send him on the trolly tracks and the last thing Ross would see for a while was Bourque's shoulder. Taking the momentum from that hit , Bourque scored just moments later on a nicely set-up play by Weiland. Kootenay continued their physical play and gave Trail little chance to come back. Mikhailov scored the insurance marker midway through the third period and added an empty net goal later. With the series tied we'll be in Kootenay for the next two games. Stay tuned.

Kootenay wins 3-0 and has tied the series at 1

1st period
14:45 - Bourque (Weiland)
2nd period
3rd period
11:15 - Mikhailov (Petrov,Kharlamov)
19:01 - Mikhailov (unassisted)

Kharlamov gives Ice the lead

"Tha was an awesome game by Valery. After that second goal we were just standing in awe for a few seconds and he does it so gracefull." - Raymond Bourque in a post-game interview when asked about his teamate's performance.

Things did not start out great of Kootenay in their first game on home ice. Flaman made a bad giveaway that led to a goal by Ken Hodge. Doan tied the game minutes later but Bryan Trottier regained the lead for his team. For that point on Kharlamov took over. With great burst of speed he beat Laperierre for the puck , got it behind the net and scored on the wrap around. Goaltender didn't look good on that one but things got even worse for him on Kharlamovs next goal. The soviet dangeld past everyone ,fooled Durnan with an easy move and scored his second marker. His third goal to complete the hattrick was a classic Soviet tic-tac-toe with Kharlamov on the trigger for a hard slapshot. The Ice led the game 4-2 and the building was on it's feet. The frustrated Smoke Eaters weren't able to turn the game around and are now trailing in the series.

Kootenay wins 4-2 and leads the series 2-1

1st period
7:19 - Hodge (unassisted)
12:51 - Doan (Bourque,Prentice)
14:09 - Trottier (Laperierre,Joliat)
2nd period
8:01 - Kharlamov (unassisted)
12:47 - Kharlamov (Petrov,Lutchenko)
15:28 - Kharlamov (Mikhailov,Vasiliev)
3rd period

Crucial game 4 won in great overtime effort

"It was so important for us to win this game 4. Instead of trailing 1-3 were are now tied and looking for the lead again." - Scotty Bowman

Not unsimilar to game 2 the forth game of this Divisional Semis with lots of hits and physical hockey. This time it wasn't as one-sided. Trail threw out some good hits too and played the body really hard. This led to a lack of scoring chances in both the first and second period. Early in period 3 Aurel Joliat , the feisty dwarf-sized winger found his way through Vasiliev and Lutchenko and beat Richter gloveside high with a great shot. Joliat's team was unable to contain the pressure that was now put on them by Kootenay and Dennis Hull tied the game with 3 minutes left. Neither team could end it in regulation and were set for the first period of overtime hockey of the series. The first period went eventless , only action notable was a nice save by Durnan on Stanley. The second period offered everything the first lacked off. Both teams charged on a torrid pace with both goalies having a giant load of work early. That worked proved to be too much for Mike Richter as he let lose an easy rebound. Joliat took that gift without hesitation and scored the series tying goal.

Trail wins the game 2-1(OT) and ties the series at 2

1st period
2nd period
3rd period
5:41 - Joliat (Cameron)
17:01 - Hull (Weiland,Bourque)
Overtime period 1
2nd period
7:44 - Joliat (Cameron,Trottier)

06-03-2008, 03:30 PM
Durnan redeems himself in goaltending performace extraordinaire

The game couldn't have started worse for Bill Durnan. 39 seconds into the game Vladimir Petrov shot in puck in net direction to go of for a line change. Durnan totally misread the shot and it somehow ended up in the net. Trail had a hard time shaking off that blunder and produced little offence. Their opponent could not exploit that either and the first period ended with score of 1-0. Kootenay started the second with a pure offensive firework that Durnan somehow was able to withstand. The charge continued but Durnan was everywhere. He robbed Kharlamov,Bourque and Mikhailov on several occasions. With their goalie remaining unbeaten the Smoke Eaters regained new strenght and started a counterattack. Unlike his counterpart Mike Richter wasn't able to withstand. Larionov and Trottier scored quick back-to-back goals. Joliat added the empty net goal to complete the comeback sparked by an awesome performance by Bill Durnan.

Trail wins the game 3-1 and leads the series 3-2

1st period
0:39 - Petrov (Vasiliev)
2nd period
3rd period
14:18 - Larionov (St.Louis,Tkazuk)
15:00 - Trottier (Laperierre,Cameron)
18:14 - Joliat (unassisted)

The Ice keep them selves from melting

Defense is winning the championship. An old saying but the team from Kootenay is definetly build after that phrase. With the superior defensive effort all led by Raymond Bourque and Valeri Vasiliev the Ice were able to stay alive against a offensively harmless looking team from Trail. They also have to thank their goalie Mike Richter. He turned his play around after a sub-par performance in game 5 and was a solid factor Kootenay's win. No risks were taken in period one and period two started in similar fashion until Kharlamov took matters into his own hands and beat half of the Smoke Eaters defense all by himselft. He passed the puck cross-crease to a rushing Ray Bourque , who converted with all his routine. That score stood for a while but in the midts of period three Barney Stanley scored the game winner for Kootenay.

Kootenay wins the game 2-0 and ties the series at 3

1st period
2nd period
13:37 - Bourque (Kharlamov,Mikhailov)
3rd period
10:21 - Stanley (Hull,Weiland)

Trail blasts it's way to round 3

After the last rather low-scoring games the Smoke Eaters looked like they had some offensive force saved for this deciding game 7. Trottier initiated 2 beatifull goals in first period. On a fericious forecheck he destroyed Flaman , got the puck in front of the net and Joliat scored through Richter's five-hole. Later Trottier would work his way past Lutchenko and no-look pass the puck to a rushing Harry Cameron. Trail did not settle down their offensive game this time and it looked like they had some real fun out there. They passed and shot at will with Kootenay just watching. After Simpson blasted a shot from the point Tkachuk saw his chance and crushed the hard. Richter had no chance on that play and the score was 3-0. Ken Hodge added another goal after some strong defensive work by Igor Larionov. Kootenay had already surrendered on the game and took a statist role in a movie written the Smoke Eater's offensive corpse. MacLeish and Prentice would provide some secondary scoring late in the game and setteld the final score of 6 to 0 in their favour. The Smoke Eaters advance to round three with fashion.

Trail wins the game 6-0 and wins the series 4-3

1st period
5:33 - Joliat (Trottier)
11:12 - Cameron (Trottier,Joliat)
2nd period
4:00 - Tkachuk (Simpson,Reise)
16:07 - Hodge (Larionov)
3rd period
16:17 - MacLeish (Doan,St.Louis)
17:36 - Doan (MacLeish,Larionov)

3 Stars of the series
1.Bryan Trottier
2.Bill Durnan
3.Ray Bourque

Congrats to shawnmullin for advancing to round three! and congrats to Evil Sather for making it to the second round and building an awesome team. Hope you can be around more next time.

06-03-2008, 04:19 PM
Thanks for the great write ups.

Thanks for everyone who voted for us. I'm really proud of it.

ES who knows what would've happened if you were around to argue your case.

Evil Sather
06-03-2008, 10:27 PM
Very interesting writeups. Little surprised we were given 7. GG.