Now It's A Series
By Jeff Falconio
There are few things in sports as good as a Game Seven. That winner-take-all, loser-goes-home is a rare event on the biggest stage and when it comes along it needs to be cherished. But after the first two games of the Stanley Cup finals it looked like hockey fans would again be deprived of that alluring seventh game.
If you didn't watch much hockey throughout the season you still could've come to two logical conclusions after 120 minutes: the Pittsburgh Penguins really need Sid Crosby to score and the Detroit Red Wings are by far the best team in the postseason. In Game Three Pittsburgh didn't get a goal from Crosby again (though he did have an assist) but they were able to do something incredible: they capitalized on rare Detroit mistakes and turned them into goals. The Penguins dominated the third period thanks to Sergei Gonchar's power play goal midway through the period. The thing that makes Detroit so good is it seems like they never make mistakes. The Red Wings win faceoffs and rarely get penalized (Detroit had only 9 penalty minutes in the first two games.)
Pittsburgh was more physical and more aggressive, so now we have a series. Game Four is Thursday and I'm a bit perplexed by that. First of all, Friday night is hockey night. Second, the Stanley Cup goes up against Game One of the NBA Finals. Hey the NBA playoffs have been great. I was looking forward to a Cavs-Lakers series complete with $20 Chinese food but Orlando sure has been impressive. To be honest, if forced to make a choice (and I won't have to thanks to picture-in-picture technology), I'd have to pick the Cup for one reason: Mike Emrick. He is the NBC/Versus answer to WSW favorite Gus Johnson. His calls are both enthusiastic and genuine and if you don't get a bit of a rush from his patented "Zetterberg with the DRIIIVE!!" call, well there's something wrong with you. For now, Pittsburgh is back in it but if Sid the Kid doesn't get off the schnide, it'll be another Cup for Hockeytown.