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04-30-2004, 06:42 AM
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Great series.

First, congrats to the Habs on an amazing season. This is a team nobody expected to even sniff the playoffs, let alone secure a spot, win a series and advance to the second round for a solid showing against the top seed in the conference. You Montreal fans should be proud. You have a fairly young team with great potential and they just got some invaluable experience under their belts. One can draw a certain parallel between this series and the Bolts-Devils series of last year, with Tampa's role reversed. The Lightning had surprised everyone with their post-season appearance and their first-round win. And against the Devils, they earned respect in a 4-1 series loss that was MUCH closer than it looked on paper, with the Bolts thoroughly outplaying NJ in a couple of games and somehow still losing. Even so, it was nice to be able to say we held our own against the eventual Cup champions (I hope the Habs can say the same in a few weeks) and I have no doubt that experience has contributed to Tampa's strong playoff run this year. In any case, the Canadiens certainly deserved a better fate than 4-0. This series was far from a rout.

Second, with only two exceptions (who I'll refrain from naming, since that would likely violate board rules, but I'm sure they know who they are and the rest of you probably do, too), it was a real pleasure talking hockey with the Habs fans during this series. You have a terrific bunch, full of insight and passion. You're welcome on the Lightning board any time.

Third ... go Bolts!

Au revoir, mes amis.

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