For Montreal, all playoff season long the motto had to be, one game at a time. They fell down 3-1 to mighty Washington before toppling the giants in seven. They traded blows back and forth with the reigning Stanley Cup champions before ousting Sid the Kid in seven games. But there wasn’t enough magic in the century old uniforms to propel the Habs into the Stanley Cup Finals – as tonight was their final game.
In probably an easy series for the Flyers despite losing game three, Michael Leighton shut out the Montreal Canadiens three times in five games to break the back on Montreal in five games.
I let the bandwagon excitement of the eighth seed get to me when I predicted they win the series in six, knocking my playoff record down to an 8-6 record. I think if the Canadiens could have taken this series to seven games, they could have found their way to battle their way into the finals.
The difference in this series was not desperation, but determination, and Richards and Carter proved that in the dying seconds of game five. They could have easily pressed the puck into the corner, and called it a night, but instead decided to out muscle the Canadiens defense for the clinching goal.
The run is over, but thank you Montreal, for dazzling us with some magic (and knocking out OV and Sid).
Philadelphia must now travel to Chicago and prepare for Game One. It would be easy to say that one of the teams left (Chicago and Philly) is one piece shy of the puzzle in capturing the Stanley Cup – but with no recent history of Stanley Cup births (’92 for Chicago; ’97 for Philly) and no championships in my lifetime (’60 Chicago; ’75 Philly).
Tags: Alex Ovechkin Boston Bruins Carter Chicago Blackhawks Finals Michael Leighton Montreal Canadiens New Jersey Devils Patrick Kane Philadelphia Flyers Pittsburgh Penguins Richards Sidney Crosby Stanley Cup Stanley Cup Playoffs Washington Capitals