Game 5 of the 2013 Stanley Cup Finals goes down tonight, and if you’re a fan of either team or just a fan of hockey in general, you’re probably preparing to be somewhere near a television when the puck drops. Hopefully, you can stay up late, because the way this series has gone so far, an extra period or two is practically guaranteed tonight.
There is no doubt about it – the NHL has benefited from the insane amount of overtime games that have graced the 2013 playoffs. The fact that three out of the first four games of these finals have also gone into overtime certainly ramps up the excitement level of these finals – but what interests me more than anything is that, so far, we have seen two distinct types of games head into extra periods. Games 1 and 4 provided us with rather high-scoring affairs, with finals of 4-3 and 6-5. Game 2, however, was a much more tightly-contested, defensive grind, low-scoring affair, which ended 2-1 in OT.
I know that I personally enjoy watching those low-scoring games, in which the tension and anticipation mount because any goal could be the last one scored. Some people, though, love to watch players flying up and down the ice, shredding the defense with crisp passes, eye-popping stick handling skills, and the sort of highlight-reel goals that make you leap out of your seat. Those types of shootouts feature optional D and wild momentum changes that leave you wondering, “How can the other team top that?”
Which type of game do you find to be more entertaining? Enjoy, and may the hockey gods grant you your wish tonight!