Kukla's Korner Hockey
from the Red Deer Advocate,
Real hockey fans celebrate their team’s victories by cheering loudly, singing in the streets, waving flags, or drinking themselves stupid. Real hockey fans don’t burn police cars.
Calgary’s famed Red Mile has been a shining example of how hockey fans should honour their home team — granted, I am a little bias as I am a Flames fan.
A little nudity and public drunkenness aside, (OK, a lot of nudity) thousands of Calgary fans have managed to celebrate the Flames’ playoff victories in peaceful fashion. When the Flames made their surprise playoff run in 2004, the insane parties on the Red Mile didn’t result in looted stores or burned police cars.
from Bob Ryan of the Boston Globe,
The Bruins were props.
Their assigned role in this production last night was to play the part of the overwhelmed opposition. They were not to interfere with the plot line, which called for Montreal to reassert the superiority of a No. 1 seed against a No. 8. And your Bruins followed the script magnificently, right down to allowing a cherry-on-the-sundae goal with eight seconds remaining in a 5-0 celebration of Canadiens hockey.
The Bruins threatened to mess with the plot in the first period, when they had the preponderance of the legitimate scoring chances.
from the Montreal Post,
No matter how hard they tried, members of the mob could not tip the vacant police car on its side. They dented its doors, shattered its windows and, with nothing left to break, they sought to set it aflame.
So just after midnight, more than two hours after the Montreal Canadiens claimed victory in their National Hockey League playoff series, a group of young men shoved cardboard boxes into the cruiser a few blocks from the arena. A crowd watched as flames engulfed the empty car.
About a half-dozen Montreal police cruisers were already burning, or about to be burned, as post-game celebrations dissolved into rioting early Tuesday morning.
added 7:29am, from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star at his Spin blog,
It was more a spasm of opportunistic vandalism than a hockey-related riot, yet it will leave an ugly mark on the city today.
From a sports point of view, no longer will Montrealers be able to mock Torontonians for the way in which they take to the streets with honking car horns after the Maple Leafs win a playoff round, if anyone in the GTA can actually remember back that far.
The Habs-Bruins series was a first rounder, yet the honking was there in the streets of Montreal, evidence, some would say, of the very different demographic that makes up the Montreal fan base these days.
added 8:52am, from Elliotte Friedman of the CBC at his From the Pressbox blog,
Canadiens defeat Bruins 5-0. Bruins put up a fight the whole series but the Canadiens had their number tonight.
Washington takes on Philadelphia tomorrow night in a game 7 after defeating the Flyers 4-2. Ovechkin had the game winner early in the 3rd and put the game out of reach with another goal later in the 3rd period.
from Bill Simmons at ESPN Page 2,
Look, sometimes a sport can just evolve in the wrong direction. It happened to tennis, it happened to pro wrestling and it definitely happened to hockey. This was a sport that thrived on rivalries and feuds—Montreal and Boston, the Rangers and Islanders, Philly and Washington, Montreal and Toronto, Montreal and Quebec, Montreal and everybody—so by moving key franchises and adding too many other ones, fundamentally, they were killing the one thing that made the sport so great. As a Boston fan, how am I supposed to get fired up during the regular season for a steady stream of Nashville, Columbus, Carolina and Anaheim? It’s insane. It’s illogical. Hockey should never have more than 22 teams, and half those teams should be playing in Canada, where it’s the national sport and the citizens truly care about the game.
before you come to a conclusion, keep reading...
From Tim Wharnsby at the Globe & Mail,
All eyes will be focused on rookie Montreal Canadiens goalie Carey Price and how he deals with the pressure cooker of a game seven in the Stanley Cup playoffs.
Price has been coddled by the Canadiens since he gave up five more goals in Montreal’s wild 5-4 loss to the Boston Bruins in game six on Saturday evening. He wasn’t made available for interviews yesterday and again this morning after the Canadiens skate.
Did this maneuvre to shield him only add to the anxiety he’s already experiencing in the hours leading up to tonight’s elimination game?
via Spector at the Soapbox section of Spector’s Hockey,
Why the Bruins will win: The momentum and confidence is now fully on their side and all the pressure is now on the Habs at home. They’ve outworked the Canadiens in nearly every game in this series and will continue doing so. Appear to have gotten to Habs goalie Carey Price, while Tim Thomas will play well between the Bruins pipes.
Why the Canadiens will win: They should get a confidence boost from the rabid hometown crowd. Their young scorers finally came through in Game 6 and should follow it up in Game Seven. The coaching staff will stress out-working the Bruins, including making the physical sacrifices to make the plays that win playoff games. Carey Price will again stand tall in goal.
from Fluto Shinzawa of the Boston Globe,
For the Canadiens, tonight will be the first time they face a possible season-ender. The Bruins, however, have been fighting to extend their season for quite some time….
Montreal swaggered into the series with all the confidence expected of a club that had claimed all eight meetings with the Bruins this season. Their chests ballooned even bigger when they took Games 1 and 2 at the Bell Centre, riding hotshot goalie Carey Price and the stick of world-class talent Alex Kovalev, who netted a seemingly back-snapping overtime goal to give Montreal a 2-0 series lead.
But four games later, Montreal looks like a broken team that’s staggering at the wrong time.
from Jack Todd of the Montreal Gazette,
It’s cardiac time in Montreal. Grab the heart pills, Mabel, make sure Daddy has taken his Valium, pull up a seat within dialing distance of your 50-inch HDTV and get ready to sweat 50-calibre bullets.
Game 7. And how many of you had already made other plans for tonight, assuming the blue-blood Montreal Canadiens would have taken care of the upstart Boston Bruins long before now?
They’re running the marathon in Boston today and this postseason already seems like a marathon - not for the teams, but for the fans who are home chewing their lips off. It’s so bad, Jewish guys are saying Hail Marys at Passover and Catholics are bowing to Mecca. Down on Crescent St., Milan Lucic is the new Darcy Tucker.
from Scott Morrison at his Viewpoint Blog at CBC,
Funny, but wasn’t this the kind of scenario supporters of the Montreal Canadiens had always worried about…
- Having a rookie goaltender and dealing with the pressure of the playoffs. After giving up five goals in the first four games of the series, Carey Price has now been beaten five times on consecutive nights by the Boston Bruins, though he was hardly solely to blame for the latest defensive collapse.
Included in that total, was in each of the past two games, with a chance to put the Bruins out of their misery, the Canadiens gave up four goals in both third periods. Not good.
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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