UHS COACH NYE FOLLOWING THE 2013 STANLEY CUP PLAYOFFS
I’m not sure how you all feel but the night before the first game of any Stanley Cup Final I get this whole new excitement built up inside me, it’s really hard to explain I tell ya. But let me try anyway. (Humour me ok!)
This excitement is like when we were little tykes waiting for Santa to come or as we waited for the sun to go down on Halloween night so we could go out and do some trick ‘n treating! You know what I’m talking about don’t you? It’s just I’m explaining it while you fans out there can’t or don’t want to as you might feel too embarrassed or ashamed…..ha, ha, ha not me, not this ‘ol Coach, never ashamed of the way I feel, remember I’m still waiting to grow up!
Anyway enough of this verbal diarrhea going on here, we need to get down to business and discuss about these two fine teams that are going to do battle for the shrine of all cups, The Stanley Cup.
Let’s begin at the beginning shall we. The Chicago Blackhawks and the Boston Bruins have meant 6 times in the playoffs through their 86 combined years in the NHL. The last time was in the 1977-78 season where the Bruins swept the Hawks 4-0 and they now hold a 5-1 in winning series. Also with the Hawks and Bruins in the final this giving us the first Original Six championship since the series between Montreal Canadiens vs New York Rangers in 1979.
Over the years both teams have been bottom of pack type teams and then have risen to the top with strong drafting and coaching. With the Bruins winning the cup in 2011 and the Hawks the season before in 2010 these two teams should not forget how hard these next few days will be. It will be a test of determination, strength and the will to win but most of all it should be a classic.
Let’s break it down in what the Coach calls the three finer points of the game because you have been reading all the other basic points in your local scribes.
Point One - One on One Battles
So even here I’m calling this a draw because that’s what you will get. You have two great teams who will battle for the puck until death do us part, as they say. Put Lucic along the boards against Oduya and you have a battle. Put Bickell against McQuaid and there is another one. But the one we are waiting for is who will Zdeno ‘Redwood’ Chara be up against? Will he go head to head against Captain Serious Toews or will be against Patrick’ Magic Hands’ Kane, either one they will battling hard and heavy.
Point Two – Line Matching
Here you have one team, the Bruins who have been throwing over the boards 4 solid lines even if you have to replace a third of the fourth line (Campbell out with broken leg). Coach Julien has players to replace him who can step in without missing a beat ( Daugavins or Pandolfo ). Then on the other side with Coach Q who seems to be a master of shuffling his lines (Scotty Bowman must be helping up in the press box) as he had Kane playing with different centers and wingers throughout the last series. As Sharp of the Hawks stated in the NHL.com interview the other day, ”He has a great feel for us as players, what we can bring to a particular game, [an] upcoming game. He’s done a good job of scouting teams we’re playing, looking at different matchups. I think all of us as players, we’re comfortable playing with each other. We’re used to being thrown around in different combinations and we all trust that Joel picks the right ones.”
Point Three – Big Time Players
As I mentioned earlier these teams haven’t been away from the finals that long so they have the experience. With Boston you really have a team that has not changed very much since they won the cup in 2011 and in fact adding some cup experience in with J. Jagr. While the Hawks have changed up their own team a bit since 2010 they still have Toews, Kane, Sharp, Hossa, Seabrook and Keith so don’t go giving any advantage away to the Bruins, not just yet anyway. I could on and on with the names and what could be the great possibilities of who will be the star of this series but that also will change from game to game.
So there you have the Coaches, what I call, the finer points of the series. Now you all may be wondering, Hey Coach who’s going to win it all? Well bright eyes here is what the Coach thinks – Chicago in 7 – because home ice in the finals can really make a difference. Sit back and Enjoy it’s going to be a dandy!
Until next time.
See you after the game,