CHICAGO -- The buildup finally is finished. After days of discussion and dissection, the 2013 Stanley Cup Final between the Boston Bruins and Chicago Blackhawks will commence Wednesday with Game 1 (8 p.m. ET; NBC, CBC, RDS) at United Center.
Once the puck drops, the answers to all the questions that have been raised during the past four days of inquisitions will begin to reveal themselves.
Asked to identify the biggest key to the series, Boston's Rich Peverley hinted at the frustration the players are starting to feel as they wait to get back to those things they can control -- mainly their actions on the ice.
"That's for you guys to write about, I don't know," Peverley told NHL.com during Stanley Cup Final Media Day on Tuesday. "They have a lot of depth, we have a lot of depth; they are playing really well at the right time and I feel like we are playing pretty good right now, too. I think it is going to be a really good series. I can't focus on one thing."
Nobody can identify just one thing that will win or lose the final series of the 2013 Stanley Cup Playoffs, but here are five key questions whose answers will play a part in determining which team will raise the Stanley Cup later this June.
Hossa doesn't claim to have this inside information because he lives across the street from Chara in Trencin, Slovakia; rather, he knows his Chicago Blackhawks will have their work cut out now that they're matched against the 6-foot-9, 255-pound captain of the Boston Bruins in the Stanley Cup Final.
"He's the biggest guy on the ice and his stick is so big that if you don't move your feet, he's going to hurt you," Hossa said. "He's going to come close to you and pin you on the board. You have to make sure you're moving your feet, stop and start."
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I don't think today was my most solid game that I've had, some rebounds here and there. I know there's a lot of work to do, not every game is going to go as good as these last few. I've just got to make sure I keep working and keep trying to get better.