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Old
05-26-2009, 06:57 PM
  #101
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Boucher's slap-pass to Rusty was beautiful.

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Old
05-26-2009, 09:05 PM
  #102
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Well, the Penguins are back in the finals.

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05-26-2009, 09:39 PM
  #103
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I hate the Penguins. Please lose again.

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Old
05-26-2009, 09:40 PM
  #104
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I hate the Penguins. Please lose again.
Ditto. Bleh.

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05-26-2009, 10:15 PM
  #105
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Canes luck ran out.

Hopefully Lidstrom, Datsyuk and Draper are back for cup finals.

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05-27-2009, 07:45 AM
  #106
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Attn: Jester,

Can we know say that the Penguins are the class of the East?

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05-27-2009, 07:56 AM
  #107
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I hate the penguins. And it sucks because our series could have easily gone the other way. And our team is most likely going to worse next year.

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05-27-2009, 07:59 AM
  #108
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Attn: Jester,

Can we know say that the Penguins are the class of the East?
no, because I don't want to hear it

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Old
05-27-2009, 08:22 AM
  #109
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This kinda sucks. I argued with a Penguins fan that there was no way in hell the Pens would make the finals. Oops.

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Old
05-27-2009, 08:29 AM
  #110
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Originally Posted by UseYourAllusion View Post
no, because I don't want to hear it
There is a difference between not accepting reality, and not wanting to hear about it.

The Pittsburgh Penguins are the class of the Eastern Conference, and I don't know how anybody that follows hockey can see it any differently. FWIW, I'm not horribly excited about it, but it is what it is.

Here's to hoping the Red Wings knock off the Blackhawks and win yet another Stanley Cup.

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Old
05-27-2009, 08:57 AM
  #111
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Originally Posted by Opus View Post
Attn: Jester,

Can we know say that the Penguins are the class of the East?
Sure, if it makes you happy.

Of course, I don't think the "class of a conference" gets outplayed in the first round and avoids a Game 7 because their opponent folds, and gets taken to a Game 7 in the next round...where their opponent once again folded for them.

Cam Ward's ridiculous run came to a crashing halt. Unfortunately for the Devs and Bruins, the reversion to mean came after playing against them.

The Eastern Conference is dominated by parity, and the Pens are not an outlier to that. The Pens are a very good team, but they aren't the team they were last year against the competition. Who knows what they will be next year against the field.

1-6 in the East was a crapshoot this year, and the number of Game 7s pretty much proves that point.

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Originally Posted by DeadPhish5858 View Post
This kinda sucks. I argued with a Penguins fan that there was no way in hell the Pens would make the finals. Oops.
Any of the top 6 seeds in the East could have made it this year. Very little difference amongst those teams (as long as Cam Ward kept his game at the level he came into the playoffs with).

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05-27-2009, 10:18 AM
  #112
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I hate the penguins. And it sucks because our series could have easily gone the other way. And our team is most likely going to worse next year.
I think their team will get worse too. You think Pens will be able to keep all Crosby, Malkin, Staal, Gonchar, Orpik, Whitney and MAF. One or two are getting traded. Not Malkin or Crosby or MAF but Staal or Gonchar or Whitney or even two of those players.

Hopefully Wings will be healthy enough to win it all again.

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Old
05-27-2009, 10:23 AM
  #113
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Originally Posted by DeadPhish5858 View Post
This kinda sucks. I argued with a Penguins fan that there was no way in hell the Pens would make the finals. Oops.
Way to go, Jinxy McJinxenstein from Jinxville.

I've watched one game so far in the conference finals. A mix of work and no interest has done me in. I'm already in baseball mode (Phillies/Orioles).

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Old
05-27-2009, 10:25 AM
  #114
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Originally Posted by Jester View Post
Sure, if it makes you happy.

Of course, I don't think the "class of a conference" gets outplayed in the first round and avoids a Game 7 because their opponent folds, and gets taken to a Game 7 in the next round...where their opponent once again folded for them.

Cam Ward's ridiculous run came to a crashing halt. Unfortunately for the Devs and Bruins, the reversion to mean came after playing against them.

The Eastern Conference is dominated by parity, and the Pens are not an outlier to that. The Pens are a very good team, but they aren't the team they were last year against the competition. Who knows what they will be next year against the field.

1-6 in the East was a crapshoot this year, and the number of Game 7s pretty much proves that point.
No, it doesn't make me happy. But the facts are the facts. The Penguins will represent the East for the second time in as many years.

The Hurricanes beat the Bruins in seven, the Penguins swept the Hurricanes. Sure...match-ups, luck, health and a few other factors come in to play...but I'm not going to give excuses as to why the Penguins are in the Stanley Cup final.

I just hope the Red Wings are worthy of winning yet another Cup.

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Old
05-27-2009, 10:39 AM
  #115
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Originally Posted by Kaktus View Post
I think their team will get worse too. You think Pens will be able to keep all Crosby, Malkin, Staal, Gonchar, Orpik, Whitney and MAF. One or two are getting traded. Not Malkin or Crosby or MAF but Staal or Gonchar or Whitney or even two of those players.

Hopefully Wings will be healthy enough to win it all again.
They've already traded Whitney.

They will keep their nucleus together, what will be important to watch with the Pens is that I think they'll struggle with depth from year-to-year (happened this year) on that club. As long as they have a system capable of dealing with those problems, they'll be okay.

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No, it doesn't make me happy. But the facts are the facts. The Penguins will represent the East for the second time in as many years.

The Hurricanes beat the Bruins in seven, the Penguins swept the Hurricanes. Sure...match-ups, luck, health and a few other factors come in to play...but I'm not going to give excuses as to why the Penguins are in the Stanley Cup final.

I just hope the Red Wings are worthy of winning yet another Cup.
Representing the East twice does not make you the "class" of the conference...it means you survived an elimination tournament. You can roll dice twice and get the same number...doesn't mean they're weighted.

And people are far too friggin casual with the word "excuses." Stuff happens in sports that explains wins and losses. Cam Ward not playing particularly great against the Pens was a big factor...just as his play down the stretch and in the first couple of rounds was huge in getting a good but not great Canes team into the playoffs and winning a couple of rounds (paired with a RIDICULOUS finish against the Devs in Game 7).

They're a good team with good players...there are other good teams with other good players in the East. If they were the "class of the conference" getting through the first two rounds should not have been the struggle it was this year. Last year they dominated the East...this year they survived.

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Old
05-27-2009, 10:53 AM
  #116
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Originally Posted by Jester View Post
And people are far too friggin casual with the word "excuses." Stuff happens in sports that explains wins and losses.
That's true. Since we scratched Sykora for good in the Washington series we've gone 8-1 and played a hell of a lot better and got Malkin to be the dominant force he should be. Good teams make adjustments and come through at crunch time. Gonchar goes down against Washington... well, we come through anyway despite him being clearly hobbled, and that creates a situation that Bylsma utilizes to a new strength as he dumps Dupuis and invents a 4th line with Sid or Malkin skating with Satan and Adams, making a pretty dangerous 4th line that you didn't face.
Perhaps the series ending 5-3 and 6-2 wins in the first rounds were even something the Pens should deserve credit for rather than those matches be explained away as the opponent folding? I mean - winners show up.

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They're a good team with good players...there are other good teams with other good players in the East. If they were the "class of the conference" getting through the first two rounds should not have been the struggle it was this year. Last year they dominated the East...this year they survived.
Lots of respect to Philly and Washington. They were both better teams than anyone we met in the East last year. Just wasn't quite enough. Our conference has gotten much better over the past year. Our domination last season said more of our opponents. We're a better team now than we were.

As for 'Class of the East' - well, that would obviously be easier to say if we had finished at the top of the regular season standings again this year. As it were we had to fight to get in because of a coaching situation and botched off-season campaign that you all know about. Since Bylsma took over, we have been the class of the East though, and that's why we're now in the Conference finals again.

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Old
05-27-2009, 11:10 AM
  #117
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Representing the East twice does not make you the "class" of the conference...it means you survived an elimination tournament. You can roll dice twice and get the same number...doesn't mean they're weighted.

And people are far too friggin casual with the word "excuses." Stuff happens in sports that explains wins and losses. Cam Ward not playing particularly great against the Pens was a big factor...just as his play down the stretch and in the first couple of rounds was huge in getting a good but not great Canes team into the playoffs and winning a couple of rounds (paired with a RIDICULOUS finish against the Devs in Game 7).

They're a good team with good players...there are other good teams with other good players in the East. If they were the "class of the conference" getting through the first two rounds should not have been the struggle it was this year. Last year they dominated the East...this year they survived.
Fair enough, I can and do respect your opinions and views...I just don't always agree with them.

To me, the Penguins are the class of the East.

This season, they survived...only until they fired coach Therrien. Since they made the switch, the Penguins having been kicking some serious ass, and I expect it to continue thru next season. I wouldn't at all be surprised if they are back in the Cup finals next season.

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Old
05-27-2009, 12:00 PM
  #118
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If winning the Conference in two consecutive years doesn't make a team the "class" of the Conference, then nothing can.

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Old
05-27-2009, 12:29 PM
  #119
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Fair enough, I can and do respect your opinions and views...I just don't always agree with them.

To me, the Penguins are the class of the East.

This season, they survived...only until they fired coach Therrien. Since they made the switch, the Penguins having been kicking some serious ass, and I expect it to continue thru next season. I wouldn't at all be surprised if they are back in the Cup finals next season.
They played us to a 6 game series where we controlled play the majority of the series...and they were taken to 7 games by the Caps. Last year they were kicking some serious ass...they lost 2 games the entire playoffs against Eastern Conf. opponents, this year they lost 5 and with a few bounces they easily could have been bounced in the first or second round...their path to the SCF was never in doubt last year.

As far as them making it back again...sure, they are and should be a good team for a number of years. Chances are, however, that they're not going to make it back next year...doesn't mean they won't, and doesn't mean you should think any less of them if they do not. Just like they shouldn't be championed as the greatest thing since sliced bread for making it twice in a row.

The playoffs, as ever, are a horrible way to evaluate teams.

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Old
05-27-2009, 12:53 PM
  #120
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Last years Pittsburgh team was better then this years version.
The Flyers pushed them in round 1, and with a couple of breaks they could have been eliminated. They got pushed to 7 games by a Caps team that IMO isnt that special defensively.
I knew the Pens would handle the Canes because the matchups easily favored the Pens. The Canes best hope was Cam Ward taking his game to a even higher level then it was against Boston and well didnt exactly work out. He look pedestrain at best.
They have a very good hockey club, I am not going to deny that but they are not far and away better then everyone else in the East.
We will see what happens in The Final.

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Old
05-27-2009, 12:57 PM
  #121
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The playoffs, as ever, are a horrible way to evaluate teams.
Maybe so but past dynasties have not been named for their regular season success.

The Pens have now won six playoff series in the last two years against five different organizations in the Eastern Conference. Another six organizations in the East have missed the playoffs in both seasons.

What do the Pens have to do, in your opinion, to earn the honourary title of 'class of the East?'

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05-27-2009, 01:06 PM
  #122
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Maybe so but past dynasties have not been named for their regular season success.
But they had regular season success as well. And I'm not sure a team without a Cup to their resume yet should be discussed with the term "dynasty" in any way.

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The Pens have now won six playoff series in the last two years against five different organizations in the Eastern Conference. Another six organizations in the East have missed the playoffs in both seasons.

What do the Pens have to do, in your opinion, to earn the honourary title of 'class of the East?'
Do what you did last year. Again.

Last year they went through the East with style points. This year it was a big time grind for them until they got to Carolina -- a clearly inferior team (as they were ALL regular season) when Ward stopped playing so well.

They're a good team...but the fact of the matter is that the Pens regressed towards the rest of the conference this season. They're not as good as they were last year against Eastern Conf. competition -- now, you can certainly argue that the rest of the conference has gotten better...but I'm less impressed with this Pens team than I was last year.

If you want the Pens to be the "class of the East" then there are a few other teams you're going to have to place right there with them this year.

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05-27-2009, 01:11 PM
  #123
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They played us to a 6 game series where we controlled play the majority of the series...and they were taken to 7 games by the Caps. Last year they were kicking some serious ass...they lost 2 games the entire playoffs against Eastern Conf. opponents, this year they lost 5 and with a few bounces they easily could have been bounced in the first or second round...their path to the SCF was never in doubt last year.

As far as them making it back again...sure, they are and should be a good team for a number of years. Chances are, however, that they're not going to make it back next year...doesn't mean they won't, and doesn't mean you should think any less of them if they do not. Just like they shouldn't be championed as the greatest thing since sliced bread for making it twice in a row.

The playoffs, as ever, are a horrible way to evaluate teams.
If if's and but's where candies and nuts, we'd have a Merry Christmas. Unfortunately for us, and the Flyers...we didn't get the necessary breaks, bounces, calls and whatever else we can classify in there to beat the Penguins 4 games. Sure, some games could have turned out differently, but they didn't. The Penguins won, fair and square...and went to the second round while the Flyers went golfing.

Who knows what season the Penguins will have next season, but I wouldn't at all be shocked to see right where they stand today. If they do, will you then concede that they are the class of the East? If they happen to win the Stanley Cup this season, will you concede that they are the class of the East? If not, what do they have to do, in your opinion...to gain that label from you?

In the last two season, the Penguins have won 12 games in the first three rounds, while no other team has. As mentioned, like you are well aware, they have represented the Eastern Conference the past two years. If it's not the Penguins, which team do you feel is the class of the East?

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05-27-2009, 01:27 PM
  #124
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But they had regular season success as well. And I'm not sure a team without a Cup to their resume yet should be discussed with the term "dynasty" in any way.
Just to be clear, I am not labelling the Pens a dynasty.

As a comparison, I would argue that the Buffalo Bills of the early '90s were the class of the AFC but certainly not a dynasty.

Quote:
Do what you did last year. Again.

Last year they went through the East with style points. This year it was a big time grind for them until they got to Carolina -- a clearly inferior team (as they were ALL regular season) when Ward stopped playing so well.

They're a good team...but the fact of the matter is that the Pens regressed towards the rest of the conference this season. They're not as good as they were last year against Eastern Conf. competition -- now, you can certainly argue that the rest of the conference has gotten better...but I'm less impressed with this Pens team than I was last year.

If you want the Pens to be the "class of the East" then there are a few other teams you're going to have to place right there with them this year.
As a difference of opinion, I care more that it was done rather than how it was done.

Match ups matter as well, which is another reason I'm more impressed with this run than last year's run. Last year they beat two teams that simply were fodder for the Penguins: the Sens and Flyers. The Rangers could strategically compete with the Penguins, but lacked the offense to beat them in a seven game series. This season the Pens defeated two teams in which the match ups were a push: the Flyers and Caps. They followed that up with a complete destruction of the Canes, who just can't compete with Pittsburgh. Their deficiencies were also compounded after mentally and physically draining series against the Devils and Bruins.

Their competition in the playoffs was better this season, which is why is wasn't such an easy road to the Finals. Of note, no team that advanced to the second round in the East last season repeated the feat this season, except for Pittsburgh. Looking at regular season records, the only other team that has had two similar regular season results was New Jersey and they were bounced in the first round both times.

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Old
05-27-2009, 01:28 PM
  #125
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In the last two season, the Penguins have won 12 games in the first three rounds, while no other team has. As mentioned, like you are well aware, they have represented the Eastern Conference the past two years. If it's not the Penguins, which team do you feel is the class of the East?
Parity. I don't think there is one. And, more importantly, there doesn't have to be one.

The only team that blew me away was Boston with the way they played early on in the season, but they dropped down from that level considerably in the second half of the season and never regained it.

For whatever reason, modern sports discourse seems to demand grand statements be attached to teams with regularity. Fact of the matter is there hasn't been a "dynasty" in the NHL since the Oilers came to the end of their era in 1990. With the institution of the salary cap, it is unlikely that we will see many dynasties going forward. There have been good teams that have won multiple cups, but the era of such distinction between teams is passing if it hasn't passed already.

I wouldn't be shocked at all to see the Penguins exactly where they are now next season...I also wouldn't be shocked to see the Flyers, Bruins, Caps, etc. in that spot...not to mention someone else (the Habs have a ton of money to refashion their team with for next season).

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