What chances would the Leafs had against the Red Wings in the 02 Finals?
If the 2002 Stanley Cup Final was Toronto vs Detroit and not Carolina vs Detroit, what chances do you think the Leafs would have had? I'm sure most people would pick Detroit based on their roster that season. However if anyone forgot that season in the two games the Leafs and Red Wings played against each other in the regular season was tied 1-1, plus that season Toronto finished 4th in the Eastern Conference with 100 points and were only 1 point behind Boston for 1st in the Eastern Conference. So it's not like Toronto would have been a 7th or 8th place team that just made the playoffs that season and etc.
Detroit tears them apart, I don't think the Leafs would have matched up well against them. Just to much depth and star power.
However in 93 I think the Leafs would have beaten the Canadiens, but thats another story.
2002 Leafs would have been torn apart by the 2002 Wings. And it would have been an EPIC series. The only thing that makes Toronto blowing their game 7 lead to Boston this year acceptable (in the Detroit vs Toronto Finals sense) is that Boston is my Cup pick. and it doesn't work if they are eliminated in the first round.
Mentioning 93... what happens if Yzerman's wrist isn't injured? Detroit surely wins that series, but how far do they go?
Wings would have shredded them like swiss cheese. It would have been a sweep of biblical proportions. Toronto would have had as much of a chance as Custer at the little big horn. There were maybe five guys on the entire leaf roster who would have been able to have played on the Wings that year.
It definitely isn't a sweep. The Hurricanes lost to them in 5 games. Game 3 also went to triple overtime before Detroit took a 2-1 series lead. So while the Wings eventually came around, they didn't shoot out of the gate against Carolina. Now, I know Carolina beat Toronto that year, but those games were in overtime in that series and a bounce the other way and the Leafs are in full control. For whatever reason the Leafs looked past this Carolina series and didn't play up to their potential.
I get the feeling had they played to their potential they'd have beaten Carolina and taken the Wings to 6 games. But this is all mere speculation.
This is one of those rare moments where I feel the Leafs aren't getting enough credit. Detroit beat Carolina in a pretty close 5-game series. They probably would have done the same thing to the Leafs. There wasn't much separating the Hurricanes and Leafs in the EC Final.
Let's not forget that Sundin and Tucker were playing hurt in the Carolina series and would have been healthier. They also didnt have coach Quinn for 2 games. That being said compare rosters and it's tough to make an argument for a Toronto victory. It likely would have been wings in 5 or 6.