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Boston is in the Stanley Cup final but who will join them, St. Louis or San Jose?

 

It's looking like St. Louis.  Let's see if the Sharks still have some of that magic left.

 

Either way, just scored tickets to Game 2!


*BISCUIT - SEASON 16 - TARNISHED SILVER BISCUIT PLATE CHAMPION*

 

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If Binnington can keep up his Rookie of the Year status, I can see St. Louis beating Boston in the Finals.  The series won't be over quickly though, it's probably going to go the full 7 games.


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As stated in another thread, I was a huge Brett Hull fan as a kid.  Being from Boston, I've always loved the Bruins, but for a couple years in the early 90s, I liked St. Louis just as much (Hull, Oates, Joseph, Brown, Butcher, Shanahan, Janney) ... those players are long gone, but I've always wanted to see them win a Cup.  Now they FINALLY make it to the Finals and it has to be against the friggin' Bruins.  I was torn with the Blues-Sharks series since I also feel the same way about Jumbo Joe.

 

I am obviously rooting for Boston, but at least I won't be totally pissed off if it goes the other way.  I find it hard to believe that the last time they were in the Finals was in 1970.  Bobby Orr scored his famous flying goal, St. Louis skated off the ice and never returned.  That city deserves a Cup.  Just not this year :)


*BISCUIT - SEASON 16 - TARNISHED SILVER BISCUIT PLATE CHAMPION*

 

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To add to that the Blues have one of the longest streaks of making the playoffs in NHL history. The longest would be Montreal however a questionable event caused them to miss a year thus they didn't make the 69-70 playoffs. As a result, the Bruins have the longest. Statistically, the Blues are one of the best teams in sports history at qualifying for the leagues respective postseasons. Since the team's introduction to the league in 67, the team has missed a total of 9 post seasons. They have made the other 42.


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I also want to point out that if the playoffs are continuing with consistency, then the blues sweep the bruins lol.  The isl's, who swept the pens, got swept by the canes, who were swept by the Bruins. Gotta keep the theme going considering that it has been a long time since even 1 team got swept after sweeping a team the series before


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I also want to point out that if the playoffs are continuing with consistency, then the blues sweep the bruins lol.  The isl's, who swept the pens, got swept by the canes, who were swept by the Bruins. Gotta keep the theme going considering that it has been a long time since even 1 team got swept after sweeping a team the series before

 

 

How poorly this comment has aged lol


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Who do y'all think is going #1? Kaapo or Jack Hughes? 

 

Personally, I hope NJ chooses Hughes so that the Rangers could have Kakko, because I think Kakko has the higher ceiling and who likes New Jersey anyways hahah


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I think Hughes would be better for NJ than Kakko. Hughes would fill in better at #2 than any other Cs in terms of the future and center depth is key. Besides if Hughes fell to the Rangers they would have an overabundance of young promising Cs. That said Hughes would go nicely in NY too. Personally, I don't care one way or another.


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Personally, I hope NJ chooses Hughes so that the Rangers could have Kakko, because I think Kakko has the higher ceiling and who likes New Jersey anyways hahah

 

Truer words have never been spoken. :)

 

I'm from New Jersey, and I can tell you, most New Jerseyans prefer other teams like the Rangers.

 

I will say this though, the Devils organization has been great with youth hockey in the state.  They started sponsoring the state high school hockey tournament back when I was in school in the late 90's.


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Truer words have never been spoken. :)

 

I'm from New Jersey, and I can tell you, most New Jerseyans prefer other teams like the Rangers.

 

I will say this though, the Devils organization has been great with youth hockey in the state.  They started sponsoring the state high school hockey tournament back when I was in school in the late 90's.

 

 

That is true too with the development of prospects. I'm a rangers and Canucks fan. Since Canucks always get Bettman'ed in the lottery, I gotta pull for the Rag's to get kakko. I think Hughes is gonna be a stud too, but he does seem like a better fit on NJ.

 

As a rangers fan tho, I am extremely nervous that GM Gordon will pull a Boston and go off the board. He has been slowly turning the rangers into team Russia lol

 

Also Rain, as much as they have an abundance of centers, chytal has been played more as a winger, while Anderson is slowly looking more like a bust. It is still too early to label either as a bust, but having that extra center stud is not a bad thing either. Especially since one of them could become trade bait and net an nhl caliber blue liner that the rangers desperately need


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That was a tough one.  Devastated for my Bs, but happy for St. Louis - both the team and the fans.  Binnington played out of his mind early on and Rask let in two, not easy saves, but very stoppable shots.  That was the difference.  Congrats to the Blues.  Next season can't come soon enough.


*BISCUIT - SEASON 16 - TARNISHED SILVER BISCUIT PLATE CHAMPION*

 

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Yup, next season is the Red Win....hmm....yeah I’m not even going to finish that sentence. But, hey, Yzerman’s back!


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I'm going to go on a limb with potentially dark horse teams and say the Stars or Coyotes from the West vs the Panthers or Flyers from the East next year.

 

That said an alternate from each conference to watch for. West: Chicago. 2 years ago when everybody was still picking them to win the cup I was picking them to finish well out of the playoffs due to a lack of depth. They more than made the playoffs that year but their lack of depth got exposed to the tune of being swept in embarrassing fashion by the Preds. Last year when most were picking them as a bubble team I was picking them bottom of the standings. I may have jumped the gun a bit two years ago but I got it right this year. That said I think there are a number of young players now ready to start filling in a number of holes in the lineup. There are still issues with the roster however the C depth is fairly decent and the winger group isn't too bad either. The question marks for me is at D and behind Crawford in net. Keith rebounded from a disastrous first few months of the season but it is clear that he is now long in the tooth. Seabrook is even longer in the tooth and has had a more dramatic fall. The only player to step up thus far and fill in adequately is Gustafsson and I am not yet sold that he will be able to repeat last season.

 

East: Rangers. I think I am a year ahead on this but they have 3 big name young players joining the team this upcoming season and that isn't even touching on who they pick at #2. The talent they are stockpiling is starting to get a bit ridiculous to not think that something will happen soon. The question for me is the potential log jam in net. It makes sense to give Shesterkin a year in the AHL to adjust but what if it takes nowhere near that long? The other thing is Shattenkirk has yet to have a good healthy season. The problem here is that there are a number of young defenders looking like they are ready for the NHL leaving one spot for the 3 veteran D on the Rangers. I see Staal being the one that is least likely to get moved. As a result, if two of the three do get moved it would likely be Shattenkirk and Smith. It isn't that Staal is the worst of the three. It is that NHL teams would be unlikely to convince the Rangers to eat 2+million in salary to trade him.


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if two of the three do get moved it would likely be Shattenkirk and Smith. It isn't that Staal is the worst of the three. It is that NHL teams would be unlikely to convince the Rangers to eat 2+million in salary to trade him.

 

 

Either Smith or Shatty will likely be bought out.  Saying that Staal isn't the worst of the three is a toss up.  All 3 of them are below average dmen who need to be exiled to the AHL.  I watched almost every Rangers game this year.  Staal is basically a 6th skater on the ice for the other teams, Smith is exiled to forward because he is so bad, and Shattenkirk is getting benched in the 3rd and at times healthy scratched, yet he gets paid like a top dman.  Tbh, they each showed flashes of their old selves this season, but they are nowhere near even playing like playoff team caliber 7th defensemen.  

 

That said, with all of the talent in the system, hopefully, a quicker turn around is in order.


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I would argue that you are devaluing Stall and Shattenkirk too much. Staal is a lot like Girardi. A rather solid defensive player and valuable front of the net player. Rangers fans were saying the same about Girardi yet when he left and went to the Lightning suddenly what he brought was more noticeable as it was now missing. Taking Staal away too leaves no defender on that roster that is adept at winning front of the net battles. It goes unnoticed by many but one weakness that other teams were exploiting this past season against the Rangers was front of the net presence that other teams could establish as only Staal was capable of winning those fights with any regularity. Staal's weaknesses as a player are his lack of mobility and his play offensively leaves much to be desired. That said he isn't near the turnover machine that you elude to. The issues with Staal and Girardi isn't that they are, or were, playing poorly. Girardi went to Tampa and was seen as a valuable part of their D group yet his play wasn't any different than when he was in New York. The issue is how big their contracts are, or were for Girardi. They were being overpaid for what they were and by a not insignificant amount. Most other players of their archetype were getting around 3-4 million tops around the league yet the Rangers were paying them closer to 5 million.

 

Shattenkirk is a victim of the teams greatest deficiencies. He is a pure puck-moving defenseman. Were there stretches where he wasn't playing well? Yes, of course. However, there are a few things that you have to understand with Shattenkirk. First, he is, and will always, be a defensive liability. He is no different than the Gostisbehere or Erik Karlsson in that regard. Second, he gets his points off of his passing. Which means that the team in front of him has to be good at scoring. This, however, is unlike Ghost or Karlsson in that they can also get goals on their own as well via their really good shots. Thus Shattenkirk isn't putting up the numbers but it isn't his fault alone as he has relied on his teammate's ability to score to get points in the past. Third, in general, he actually is playing fairly well however he doesn't have the team around him that can really help him play to his best. In St. Louis he had a veteran team around him that could cover for his deficiencies through their own solid D play and could also score on their own which maximized what he could do. In Washington, the scorers were there and the team around him could cover for his deficiencies to a degree however he didn't have the time to get familiar with the system and that was the focal point to his issues when he was there. However, in New York, he joined a team that was, frankly, at the point of needing to undergo a rebuild. That means a younger team that is going to make mistakes which means that the team can't cover for his defensive deficiencies. To boot the team struggles to score. Ultimately the issue is that what the team is currently just doesn't work well with what Shattenkirk both needs and brings to the table.

 

Smith, on the other hand, should have been nothing more than a rental grab. I get that he played well after being traded for but what he could bring to the team was not worth anywhere near the 4 million plus that he got in extension. Nobody in their right mind would offer a 3rd pair Dman 4 million plus.


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I agree with what you say about Staal and shatty to an extent.  Staal's leadership and ability to win battles are great.  The problem is in the last minute when rangers are protecting a lead and hemmed in their zone.  I look at his contract as being similar to the one Colorado bought out for brooks orpik.  He is too expensive and struggles to clear the puck in big game moments.  On a reduced salary, he'd be a great option.  We could downgrade on Staal for sure as I agree, many are quick to judge him, but when a team is already struggling defensively, he and Shattenkirk don't help the cause.  With Shattenkirk, I also witnessed him struggling to hold the line on numerous occasions as well as fanning on easy passes and shots, creating scoring chances for the opposition.  I won't fault the player for an occasional whiff, but he does it far too often.  It appears as though his puck handling ability is in decline as it always looks like he's playing through a sprained wrist.  I may be a little over critical on them, but to me they are delaying the rebuild.

 

That said, Keandre Miller looks like he'll have a studly future in NY!!!


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I agree with what you say about Staal and shatty to an extent.  Staal's leadership and ability to win battles are great.  The problem is in the last minute when rangers are protecting a lead and hemmed in their zone.  I look at his contract as being similar to the one Colorado bought out for brooks orpik.  He is too expensive and struggles to clear the puck in big game moments.  On a reduced salary, he'd be a great option.  We could downgrade on Staal for sure as I agree, many are quick to judge him, but when a team is already struggling defensively, he and Shattenkirk don't help the cause.  With Shattenkirk, I also witnessed him struggling to hold the line on numerous occasions as well as fanning on easy passes and shots, creating scoring chances for the opposition.  I won't fault the player for an occasional whiff, but he does it far too often.  It appears as though his puck handling ability is in decline as it always looks like he's playing through a sprained wrist.  I may be a little over critical on them, but to me they are delaying the rebuild.

 

That said, Keandre Miller looks like he'll have a studly future in NY!!!

 

Orpik is a great comparison to be using for Staal. That said he helps defensively he just doesn't do a good job of clearing the puck out of the zone. A helps but can hurt kind of deal.

 

There is a reason that Shattenkirk was more of a half wall to point position on the powerplay in St. Louis. He hasn't ever been particularly good at holding pucks in either.

 

Also, they might be more helping in that they helped get the Rangers the 2nd overall pick. It just depends upon which way you look at it.


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I was reading a recent article on a popular website yesterday that graded every player's playoff performance with extra emphasis on the Finals.  There were 3 players that were given an A+ that I think are worth discussing.

 

1st) Tuukka Rask. 

 

I remember when Rask got his first real chance in Boston was the 2010 season when Thomas went down.  He looked solid and very promising.  He carried the Bs all the way to the Quarterfinals where they blew a 3-0 lead to Philly.  I didn't blame Rask for this collapse.  Fast forward to 2013.  Bruins are back in the Finals, 2 years removed from Thomas winning them a Cup and Rask is playing lights out.  Then the Blackhawks pretty much light him up every other game and steal game 6 by scoring 2 goals with just over a minute to play.  This is where my opinion of him changed.  I haven't liked him since then.  It just seems that "big" game after big game, he cannot elevate his game or steal games.  I'm aware my opinion might be unfair as I often compare him to Tim Thomas who was just unreal during that Cup run, but it is just what I have seen since 2010 through current day.  Fast forward to Game 7 of this year's Finals.  As good as Rask played through the playoffs, I just had a feeling there would be a collapse.  I literally predicted exactly what happened in Game 7.  Bs dominate the first period and the Blues get very few chances and Rask won't make the big saves.  Surely enough, that's what happened.  I cannot blame Rask for those goals - BUT- they were VERY stoppable.  Keep your stick on the ice and you stop the 1st deflection and the biggest chance of the night was the 2nd goal.  Sure, it was mostly on Marchand for deciding to go off for a line change with 10 seconds left, but Rask could have kept Boston in the game by making a huge save at the end of the first, but he just can't.  He's been given every opportunity to be the hero in Boston and he fails time and time again.  He's a GREAT goalie who cannot elevate his play in big games (see Thomas, Quick, Murray, Binnington, etc.).  In the end, Binnington stole 2 or even 3 games in this series and Rask stole none.  You can have your own opinion about Rask, but be warned - I will argue my point, which I have been with many people since 2013, until we are both blue in the face. 

 

2nd)  Torey Krug

 

Krug exploded on the scene in the 2013 playoffs by scoring 4 goals against the Rangers in his NHL playoff debut.  The 5'9" blueliner is an underdog.  Undersized and sometimes out-muscled, but always seems to make the smart "think ahead" play.  He's masterful at creating scoring chances and drives the Bs power play.  Many of my friends do not like him for considering him a defensive liability, but I've been telling everyone the entire playoffs that he has been the most consistent and best player for the Bruins (he led the team in points in the Finals btw and overall points if you take away empty net points for that matter).  If the Bruins forwards could actually finish, he would have had at least 10 more assists.  He was extremely physical all playoffs and didn't shy away from anyone.  As a vertically challenged person myself at 5'10", he is someone I love to see succeed.  Anyways, I just felt like letting everyone know that he is my 2nd favorite Bruin all time, that I've seen live.  1 being Bergeron and 3 being Bourque.  I'll round out the top 5 with Chara and Thomas.  Sure the great #4 Bobby Orr was best, but hey, I'm not THAT old.

 

3rd Ryan O'Reilly

 

Now it's time to give credit where credit is due.  Holy sh!t was this guy a beast all playoffs long.  He is the reason St. Louis took home the Cup (well, and Binnington, but mostly O'Reilly).  He deserved that Conn Smythe.  Just dominated at both ends of the ice.  He also played with a broken effing rib that he suffered in the 2nd round vs. Dallas.  There is nothing not to like about this guy.  If Krug and Rask (debatable) get an A+, O'Reilly deserves an A++.  I remember a story 2-3 seasons ago when Crosby speared him in the marbles, O'Reilly was asked about it after the game and basically said "eh, it's hockey, it happens".  Man, I wish this guy was a Bruin.  I am currently looking for the GPHM version of O'Reilly. 


*BISCUIT - SEASON 16 - TARNISHED SILVER BISCUIT PLATE CHAMPION*

 

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I am currently looking for the GPHM version of O'Reilly. 

 

Man wouldn't that be the best haha

 

After games, I like scrolling through comments from the fans of the team that lost.  I always see Bruins fans sh!tting on Rask.  He went through that rough patch before his leave of absence.  Afterwards, he yet again proved his ability to dominate basically up to game 7 (few rough patches in between but not major).  Krug is honestly a beast.  His trainwreck hit Robert Thomas was amazing to watch, this coming from someone who hates the Bruins.  


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Man wouldn't that be the best haha

 

After games, I like scrolling through comments from the fans of the team that lost.  I always see Bruins fans sh!tting on Rask.  He went through that rough patch before his leave of absence.  Afterwards, he yet again proved his ability to dominate basically up to game 7 (few rough patches in between but not major).  Krug is honestly a beast.  His trainwreck hit Robert Thomas was amazing to watch, this coming from someone who hates the Bruins.  

 

Haha.  Yeah, most Boston fans can be really passionate.  It can be annoying at times.  I'm too old to get all bent outta shape or blow my lid on social media :) (I must have got it all out when we lost to Chicago).

 

I don't "hate" Rask, nor do I wish for his failure.  He's a really good goalie and I'd love to see him win a Cup.  I just think he's overrated, that's all.  I trust him to get Boston to the playoffs - and to provide solid play when the Bruins play well... but I don't trust him to steal games in big moments.  It's been proven over and over again.  He was given 3 chances to steal a game in the Finals (games 2, 4 & 5) when Boston played below average.  Then in game 7 the Bs outshot STL 12-2 and had all the momentum and he lets in the next 2.  I saw it coming and it's frustrating.


*BISCUIT - SEASON 16 - TARNISHED SILVER BISCUIT PLATE CHAMPION*

 

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Ya fair enough.  The Rangers have a very critical fan base too.  I feel like Rask is better suited in a tandem type role.  If he had a goalie that was similar in skill splitting games with him, he would probably perform better.  Kinda like a Schnieder and Luongo tandem in Vancouver at the time or a Smith / Rittich tandem.  That way it would reduce some pressure off of him.


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