It comes down to a best of three series between the Buffalo Sabres and Philadelphia Flyers for the quarterfinal series. What has been an over powering show of the Flyers pushing the Sabres around, the Buffalo Sabres have split the home and away games to keep the series tied.
I had anticipated this series going seven games, but also anticipated much closer contests. While the scores have been close, it has been that way because of goaltending. Dead to rights the Flyers should be outscoring Buffalo much more than they are.
The Buffalo Sabres have figured out how to beat the Flyers, and they have done it in games one and four. Shut them down defensively – and let Ryan Miller do the rest. Last night he did that, and possibly made the save of the series by taking the puck right off the stick of Danny Briere.
The post game on ice festivities have ensured that the Good Friday game in the city of Brotherly Love is going to be anything less than that. Pat Kaleta being elbowed in the face, Tyler Ennis getting the leg seperation after the final horn. Ryan Miller’s constant battle for space in front of the net. I understand the Sabres need to defend themselves against the antics of the dirty Philadelphia Flyers, but at that point of the game they should have laughed at the Flyers and skated to Miller in celebratory fashion. That would have said more than the attempted fist fights after the game.
In talking with Eugene from Broad Street Buzz, we have labeled this series the Cardiac Series – and the NHL should consider getting sponsors from Rolaids and Tums – because they are seriously necessary when it comes to watching these contests.
I still have faith that the Buffalo Sabres will continue to be the best team in this series, maybe not in on ice play, but at the end of the series, it will be Buffalo moving to the second round. Heading back to Philly Friday night, the Flyers look like a more dominant team, but they are frustrated – and the referees are going to be on orders to keep the after whistle activities to a minimum.
It’s a hell of a time of the year, and the teams are putting on a hell of a display. The goaltending clinic that Boucher and Miller put on at the end of last nights contest to keep the game 1-0 was absolutely brilliant.
Looking forward to a very spirited game five on Friday.