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KK Members Blog

Response to PSH's "Defending Stanley Cup Champion Eliminated."

05/14/2010 at 9:59am EDT

[b]Introductory note: I asked PSH what his point was in the article linked here. I received an email noting that my comment was deleted and he only wrote it so he could delete a comment. I asked again, stating I was serious. I received this email in response from PSH: [/b]

[quote]If it is a serious question, I recommend you re-read it and try to understand it, perhaps sit on a grown up’s lap and ask them to help you with the big words.

Seriously. There is no need to ask what the main purpose(s) of the post was (were). It (they) should be obvious to any reader. Basically it is my reactions to Pittsburgh’s elimination from the playoffs. It touches off several points.[/quote][b]As I expect my comment to be deleted in PSH’s post, I posted a members post in retort that the point was obvious. Here it is:[/b]

Big words are tough, I’ll agree. Anything over four letters requires me to take a minute to look it up in my handy dictionary I keep with me in case of emergencies.

Anyways, now that we are straight on that, lets go over the points you make in your article.

[quote]
The Pittsburgh Penguins were eliminated by the Montreal Canadiens with a 5-2 loss in game seven of their second round series last night. The NHL will not have a repeat Stanley Cup champion this year. The NHL has not has a repeat Stanley Cup champion since the 1998 Detroit Red Wings.
[/quote]
Agreed. The facts state this clearly.
[quote]
It has been 12 years since a team repeated as Stanley Cup champion. This is something that has not happened before in the history of the Stanley Cup…[/quote]

Hmmm, this is sort of interesting. Go on…
[quote]
...and is a sign that elite teams are no longer being formed and kept together for a period of a few years. [/quote]

Elite teams again? Oh no…

[quote]In fact, events during this twelve year period, including expansion and a salary cap, have made it significantly harder for an elite team to be formed or kept together. Today, when a team gets to be pretty good, but not (yet?) Stanley Cup worthy, the salary cap forces them to be broken up.[/quote]

Ok, so you are going to argue expansion and a salary cap have made it hard for a team to stay together. Not ground breaking (since it has been said about 1000 times by everyone) but I don’t see anyone really having a problem with it. Now I’m ready to see some support for this, maybe you have something new…your move sir.

[quote]The Pittsburgh Penguins were no elite team. The simplest reason for that is that Marc-Andre Fleury is no elite goalie. The .891 saves percentage Fleury put up in the playoffs is a large part of the reason that Pittsburgh has been eliminated.[/quote]

I agree that Fleury is streaky, this year to his detriment, last two years to his benefit. Can he fix this? Yes, as a goaltender myself, I know that this is something that can be fixed, but it does take some maturing. Will he mature? Perhaps. Also, one poor showing in a post season does not make a goalie bad.

I also agree that the Pens this year are not the Pens of the past two season. That sense of grit isn’t there.

I don’t you’ll find arguments that the Pens were an all time great team this year, hell they were 4th in conference. But you didn’t explain how this relates to either expansion or the salary cap. You mentioned Fleury having a rough playoff, and he was on the Cup winning team last year and the team that finished second the year before. That sounds pretty good to me.

[quote]The Montreal Canadiens have managed two comeback game seven victories against the President’s Trophy winner and then the Stanley Cup winner. They have done a lot of the heavy lifting in the east. They have eliminated some of the top contenders in the East Conference. They are not truly a top contender themselves. Most of Montreal’s success can be credited to the strong goaltending of Jaroslav Halak. Halak is the playoff MVP at this point. [/quote]

So Montreal beat the two favorites in the East. Yet they are not a top contender. I guess technically, I wouldn’t have guessed they would have won, so before I would not have said they were a top contender. Ok, obvious, but fair enough. So let’s see how this fits into your previous point.

[quote]It is not uncommon for a team to advance in the Stanley Cup playoffs when they get a really hot goaltender to play behind. That is probably the number one reason for playoff upsets in history. Montreal has been outplayed by Washington and Pittsburgh. Both teams carried the play and outshot the Habs, but Halak’s goaltending kept the Habs in the game and ultimately allowed them to win the series in both cases. [/quote]

Ok, again, most people agree that Montreal won because of their goaltender. That is the beauty of the sport and the playoffs in general. Goaltending adds another element that is hard to predict and when a good one goes on a hot streak, it can make any team a contender. Can make for a hell of a series too. See this one for an example.

So an upset is usually caused by a hot goalie and that has been the case throughout history. Ok. So if this is the case, how has the cap changed this? Where does this fit in? This seems to actually contradict your point that things are different now then in the past. If it doesn’t contradict the point, it at least does not support it. It seems to be the obvious, just randomly thrown in there, maybe to link to your previous post.

This should lead to another topic on another date about the problems with linking to yourself as proof of your point. That clearly wouldn’t stand up in journalism, nor even in the relaxed standards of the blogging world. Anyways…

[quote]In the meantime, we are going to see a new team get crowned Stanley Cup champion. Current trends suggest that team will not be able to be kept together long enough to repeat as champion next year. That team is likely not as good on a historical level as teams that won the cup in other eras. It is a shame. It would be really exciting to see what would happen if a couple teams had a chance to build elite teams and compete for the cup for a prolonged period of years.
[/quote]

Maybe it would be, but this isn’t what you wrote about in this article. [quote]

That would return the Stanley Cup to a level of excitement that I haven’t seen in years.[/quote]

Hmm, two huge upsets, of two very offensive teams peppering a goalie, only to be shut down by save after save. Two series which the favored team was up 3-1, only to see the upstart team come back and win it in seven?

I say that is exciting. Obviously we disagree on the definition of exciting. I have no support (though if you want, I can write a blog about it, then link to it), but I bet most people would agree with my definition.

Basically in sum, this is why I asked you to state the point of your column; you state a conclusion, then use points that have really nothing to do with that conclusion as support, then return to that conclusion at the end. I’d say that is reason enough for the question; rather, I get an insult, my comment deleted and absolutely no explanation other than a “learn how to read.”

On a final note, you know, if you treated your readers and commentators with respect, you might have some actual conversations and/or dialog with them, rather than hate you just delete. You’d be surprised, there are actually some pretty nice and smart hockey people here around KK. It is fun to listen and learn from others’ ideas in addition to throwing yours out there. It’d be good for all of us, including Paul, if you tried this. You might even find people willing to praise you for some of your articles, which I’m sure would be nice.

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