Friday Links: First Chance To Dance

Joe is getting some teeth pulled out of his face so you guys are stuck with me today. You can e-mail Justin for a full refund if you’d like. I’ll understand.

Let’s talk playoffs, shall we? Seems to be a popular topic around these parts. These playoffs have been kind of insane. Yes, every year the playoffs are kind of insane, it’s the nature of hockey, and we do like to elevate current situations because we have a short memory. Even just last year, four of eight first round series went seven games. That was nutty. But here’s my bold prediction for what is going to make this year even more hectic. This year, we are going to see the Cup head back to a city that’s never hoisted it before.

Now, I realize that three of the remaining eight teams have won the Cup before (New Jersey, Philadelphia & New York) but, here’s the thing. They’re all in the Eastern Conference. Every team remaining in the Western Conference is a Stanley Cup virgin. And it’s not even close. The Kings have made the finals once in the 1992-1993 season (damn you Kerry Fraser!), the Blues haven’t made a trip to the big dance since making it in each of their first three seasons (1967-1970). Nashville and Phoenix haven’t even gotten close. Phoenix hadn’t even won a round until this year, and Nashville’s only won two of their own.

Personally, I find this far more interesting than any sort of Cup chase to “bring the Cup back to Canada” or some such nonsense. It’s always fun to see something that hasn’t happened before and it’s going to make the race in the West all the more exciting, especially once we get closer to the finals itself. These playoffs have been crazy enough as it is, this could make them even crazier. I’m excited. This is going to be fun.

Now let’s just hope a team from out east doesn’t screw the whole thing up.

Links To The Past

 

  • Here’s your second round TV schedule. Adjust your lives accordingly. (Puck Daddy)
  • There’s a big new stadium opening up in Markham. I’m not really sure how I feel about it, but I will say this. Please don’t name your team the Markham Chargers. That’s just…no. (Toronto Star)
  • A eulogy, of sorts, for the Ottawa Senators. (Ottawa Citizen)
  • Who are the front runners for the Conn Smyth Trophy after the first round? I’ll give you a hint, his name rhymes with Road Magoo (ESPN)
  • Pekka Rinne is really good at his job. No, I mean, he’s really good. (The Tennessean)
  • Want to hear some random facts about the New Jersey Devils? Of course you do. (Philly.com)
  • Roberto Luongo has a list of teams he’s willing to waive his no-trade clause for and Toronto is apparently one of them. Is he worth the, what are sure to be weekly, Damien Cox articles? (The Leafs Nation)
  • Some young upstart named Tim Thomas might be available in the off-season. (The Hockey News)
  • Here’s a look at David Backes competency as a captain with a Star Trek reference thrown in there for good measure. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)
  • Probably the worst way to get injured in a playoff game.