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Bure: Nothing tougher than playoff hockey

Hockey Hall of Fame member on intensity of postseason, enjoying games this year

by @NHL /

Hockey Hall of Fame member Pavel Bure averaged 1.09 points per game in the Stanley Cup Playoffs during his NHL career, fifth-most in the League since 1991-92, his rookie season.

But Bure, in his latest blog for, the League's Russian-language website, he writes that there is nothing like the NHL postseason. 

"Playoffs are the toughest competition I have ever played in," Bure said. "The only thing that can compare to it are the Olympics starting from Nagano 1998, when the best hockey players in the world started participating in them."

Bure had 70 points in 64 postseason games, including 16 goals with the Vancouver Canucks during the 1994 playoffs. The only player to score more since then was Joe Sakic, who had 18 with the Colorado Avalanche in 1996.

"Compared to the regular season, playoffs are totally different tournament with much more intensity and the importance of the outcome," Bure said. "The biggest difference between playoffs and the regular season is that you are playing at least four games against the same team. You get to know your opponents' style of play very well. … That's why you have to create new things and make adjustments on the fly all the time. If you have a scoring slump in the regular season lasting three to four games, you can shake it off and score in the fifth game. In the playoffs there may not be a fifth game. That's why you have to play with maximum focus every shift."

Bure said he's enjoyed watching the playoffs this year because every series has been close.

"I like the way this year's playoffs unfold," he said. "For the first time in many years not one series was a sweep and the wild-card teams give favorites a run for their money. I am sure the fans are enjoying these battles."

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