Way back in the spring of 2002, the Syracuse Crunch were getting ready for a 7th game in their second round playoff series against the Chicago Wolves. I remember then Crunch Coach Gary Agnew telling me that the only prediction for a game 7 was that it will either be a one goal game, or a blow-out. Unfortunately, the latter was true as the Crunch was eliminated after losing 6-2. Two years later, the team lost an overtime game 7 to the Rochester Americans furthering Gary’s point.
The same holds true in the NHL. Last night, the Phoenix Coyotes had momentum and they were coming home after a big win in Detroit two days earlier and it looked like the Coyotes might really be a team of destiny. The Red Wings spoiled their party by winning 6-1 and moving on to the second round. Phoenix was one of the most fun teams to watch this season. Their off-ice problems were squelched by the team’s on-ice performance. There will be a new owner, but the players and coaching staff will stay mostly intact. That means there’s potentially more to come from this franchise, in the near future.
There’s another game 7 tonight, between Montreal and Washington. The Canadiens, who were all but left for dead in this series, have new life and a hot goaltender. Jaroslav Halak, after giving up three goals on four shots and being pulled in game 3, has stopped 90 of 92 shots in the last two games. In addition, the Montreal penalty kill has allowed only one goal in thirty chances. The pressure is squarely on the shoulders of the Capitals. They won the Presidents' Trophy and it would be a complete failure to be ousted in the first round.
While I think the Caps will find a way to pull it off on home ice, I would like to see David take down Goliath.
*Throughout the season, AAA will bring you the Broadcaster's Blogs - "Bobby Mac", "Davidge Dishes" and "Rimer Ramblings." The Columbus Blue Jackets radio and television analysts will try to keep you updated on all the season action through their blogs, especially when the Blue Jackets are on the road.