- Jason O. Watson-US PRESSWIRE
When Gary Bettman walks to center ice sometime in the next six weeks or so, it will be to hand the captain of one very lucky hockey franchise. Not lucky to be winners of the Stanley Cup, but lucky because they are winners of the Stanley Cup. For the NHL, this season of potential winners puts the league in uncharted waters.
For the remaining teams, no one in the West has every lifted the Stanley Cup. St. Louis is the only team in the Western Conference left standing that has actually every played for the Stanley Cup, losing to the Montreal Canadiens and Boston Bruins three years running (’68, ’69, 70).
In the East, the Boston Bruins are going to a game seven against the Capitals, if post lock out history holds true, Boston won’t be winning the Cup this year because no one has won back to back rings since ’97 and ’98. The only other former Stanley Cup Winners remaining are the Devils, Rangers, and Flyers – and the Flyers are the only ones guaranteed at this point of the second round.
The Panthers should be moving onto the second round, and deservedly so. The Rangers so far have only brought the city of New York one thing so far this year, and thats the first game seven at MSG in a very long time. Lets hope the city of New York isn’t disappointed when that game kicks off. The Panthers should be hoping for a New York Rangers win, because if they have to faceoff against the Flyers, the Rat Pack stands little chance of making it out of the second round against the Flyers.
The dreaded orange and black are hungry for a chance to raise the Cup in the city of Brotherly Love – which may be a great moniker for the city – but a crappy way to describe their hockey team. The Broad Street Bullies were the last Flyers team to win the Cup, dating back to 1975.
The NHL wanted parity, and in this year’s Stanley Cup they are getting it.