Thursday, April 19, 2007
Enough is enoughalo
Over the past few days on this site, there has been more talk about Sabres than at Luke Skywalker's last garage sale. I mean, it's all well and good for our resident Buffalo fans to enjoy and celebrate their casual stroll to (at least) the conference finals, but for the rest of us - okay, not Ritch, but everyone else on the site (i.e. me) - the post-season is a grueling dogfight, an all-out, no-holds-barred, take-no-prisoners, no-quarter-asked-and-none-given hyphenated-expression-fest.
I'm talking, of course, about the Devils/Lightning series.
Now if any of you humps out there try and tell me that the Devils are boring to watch, I will ask you to kindly not roll over my foot with the wheelbarrow in which you transport your enormous balls. Yes, the Devils play tight defense, and they have the best shutdown line in the league with Madden, Pandolfo, and Brylin. But this series has proven that if the opposition is talented enough and hungry enough, the Devils system can be overpowered, plain and simple. Of course, it helps to have the Rocket Richard winner, but still. I have always said that the Devils aren't boring, your team's just not working hard enough to beat them.
Talentwise, this is far from the best team the Devils have fielded in recent years. We still don't really have a #1 defenseman, our so-called top line has been underperforming all year, and without Marty Brodeur in nets, they wouldn't be touching the playoffs with a 10-foot pole (or even a 7-foot Slovak). But despite their shortcomings, they have this knack for always finding a way to win. Last night's game was a perfect example. It was a do-or-die game. You go down 3-1 in the playoffs, you can pretty much pack your bags and join the Rangers on the back nine.
Wait, what? They did? Quit fucking with me. Really? Jesus.
Anyway, last night's game was a real classic. Both teams just punching and counterpunching, with wild swings of momentum back and forth all night long. The outcome was completely in doubt from the first drop of the puck to Gomez's unbelievable top shelf game winner in OT, which to me is what makes for great hockey.
I seriously think this might be the best matchup of the post-season. Going in, I expected it to be Pittsburgh/Ottawa - Heatley, Alfredsson, and Spezza have been on fire all year, and I understand the Penguins have some sort of exciting new youngster in the lineup. The league should find out a way to call some attention to this kid.
Anyway, do yourself a favor and watch this series. If it doesn't change the way you think about New Jersey Devils hockey, I will personally come to your house and hit you over the head with a comedic reference to something unusual that would cause you great pain if it were to strike you in the head.
Posted by Ben at 3:56 PM