After trying for a while to get back on board last night, I gave up and went to bed.....which was good as I could reflect on the game and series so far.
- It's funny how other sports' championships have such tight officiating, NFL has 1,000 replay decisions, MLB adds more umps, the NBA gets real fine, (lordy how I hate basketball's final moments, 25 seconds always takes 25 minutes to complete, especially at the college level), but because hockey has tended towards becoming a special teams oriented sport, the refs allow just about everything so as not to have the contest decided by the man advantage.
The unwritten code is you suck it up and play through the pain, (anyone hear Joe say ANYTHING about his injury?). I agree with Wensink, it was a 2 minute slash and would've been called in the regular season, (and about 5 or 6 other calls against the B's in the first OT).....and please, no whining about acting....there isn't a soul on this board that hasn't complained about the archaic officiating over the last few years, eh?
But after years of suffering through some of the most bizarre incidents known to sportkind, it really is a great feeling to have something go our way for a change.
- With that being said, this Montreal team is not that far away from being a very good team.
-- Ryder IS a good player, and like Joe, it's a matter of time before he finally breaks out.
-- That Koivu line gives me fits.
-- Some likened Ribiero to Gilmour....I see a bit of it but until he gets some of the same type of facial scars that Gilmour has to break up the continuity of his (Pirates Of The Carribbean) Johnny Depp mustache, he'll be known as "Hollywood"
-- The only reason why we're still in it is because Theodore has been Dafoesque....great saves sandwiched around atrocious goals.
-- They need Begin back...he's the closest thing they have to Travis Green's Clod Lepeeuw imitation.
-- I like the atmosphere up in Montreal, it has a European soccer craziness to it.....alas it also has the foul embellishments. Some of these guys could play for Italy's Serie A.....
-- Post CBA Montreal should be interesting....Kovalev showed he why he's considered a talented enigma. The need a character stud for a leader and if the financial landscape looks good I think they'll try and grab big name UFA.....a (no chortling please) Guerin, Arnott, Leclair, Tkacuk or do you think even a Prospal type of player? Like they B's they need forward depth or they're not going to go any further than they are now.
- Raycroft is our MVP. Anyone who thinks otherwise should just shut up and go back to their knitting.
- Nylander is a close second.....the chemistry he has with Sammy and Bergeron is great. Please, someone come up with a nickname for them.
- I wasn't a big of Travis Green when he was picked up.....I'm glad I was wrong. He's the nasty bugger that every team needs to get through the playoffs.
- And speaking of eating my words, I miss Tugboat Teddy but Hilbert looks like he was taking notes when he was sitting in the pressbox. He's still a little bit tentative out there but he ain't making any mistakes either and is willing to take a hit.
- In the replay you could see Lapointe say "it was a dive", on his penalty.....and it was definitely embellished. I hope his hits don't start getting the Ken Belanger reputation calls.
- Speaking of dives, PJ, cut the crap and play the way we know you can play.
- Anyone notice on the Montreal board that they accused Joe of turning towards the boards to take the boarding call? Like we've never seen Joe turn his baig body to shield the puck from defenders, eh?
- Despite the anti-USA crap that's been filtering through at the Bell Centre and the Montreal board, let's show some class on Friday.
My wife isn't the biggest hockey fan in the world but she always marvels how nice and well-spoken hockey players are whenever they're interviewed.....let's show that he Boston fans are the same way and refrain from the moronic "Yankees Suck" mentality.
- Rolston is gone....or at the least he doesn't get a raise. I thought his versitality made him a valuable 3rd liner...but last night in the waning moments of the game, after Joe won 3 crucial faceoffs in out own zone, Roslton lost the next 2 badly....he won't check, lousy at faceoffs, doesn't have the anticipation of PJ or Donato, and his speed is no good if he can't hit the net.
- The 700 lb. may finally be breaking through, (who was it that called for Knuble to take pounding in front of the net again?), and Murray picked a helluva time to finally show why he's here.....
- I agree with Wensink...this is a great series....some real up and down play and that first overtime had my heart racing. I'm still a bit dazed.
I thought Rolston did outstanding last night, tying up Ribeiro in our zone. He seemed determined not to let him near the net for his third goal of the night!
Much like Murray, the rest of his game is starting to get tiring and frustrating....at least Murray came through with what he's paid to do...I saw Rolston finally show some grit on one play in the OT....pinchinga player against the boards when he normally just waves his stick when he curls away.