FOX Sports Florida TV Analyst "Red Deer" Randy Moller played in 815 NHL games over 13 years and has more than 20 years of experience in the NHL broadcasting field. His blog for FloridaPanthers.com discusses the on-going 2019 NHL Playoffs.
If the casual sports fan has taken a recent dip into the National Hockey League's playoff pool, their reaction around the office water cooler would certainly evoke emotions closer to that displayed after a viewing of the latest Avengers film.
We have witnessed history in this sport of skill, speed, toughness, passion and emotion.
Four of the top regular season teams bounced in the first round, including the Tampa Bay Lightning and Calgary Flames, one and two in their respective Conferences points-wise. Both out of the frozen spring dance quicker than a Frank Vatrano wrist shot.
Momentum, or lack thereof, again took center stage in the upset wins, as the Pittsburgh Penguins, Winnipeg Jets and Nashville Predators also couldn't reverse their late regular season swoons in time. The New York State Lottery's theme "It only takes a dollar and a dream" can also be interpreted to the National Hockey League's "Just get into the playoffs".
How else could we explain the dramatics through this first round in the battle for Lord Stanley's Cup? Hockey is a game of mistakes. No goal has ever been scored without a mistake committed. It becomes about limiting your misfortunes and persevering through adversity. If you can amp up your confidence and determination the icy path to hockey history could be all yours.
If you have experienced it, you thirst for it again. If you haven't, you can't imagine what it's like.
Stanley Cup Playoffs…take a deep breath. We are just getting started.
See you at the rink,