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Tracking the Storm

The Finals: Who Ya Got?

Wednesday, 06.10.2009 / 9:56 AM ET / Tracking the Storm
By Paul Branecky
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The Finals: Who Ya Got?
I wasn’t sure that I would even watch it when it started, but I’ve really been enjoying this year’s Stanley Cup Finals.

Paul Branecky
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Although I didn’t see a second of Game 1 (after nine months of non-stop hockey and a series loss fresh in my mind, I needed a break) I’ve been on board for every game since. When Detroit won the first two I wasn’t quite as enthused about a possibly quick series, but you can’t beat Game 7 in the finals. 

I’d say it’s been a great series, but a few of the games have been surprisingly lopsided. It doesn’t quite have the same in-game drama that Canes/Devils 2009 had (last night’s game an obvious exception – great finish), but it’s been a fun ride nonetheless.

While many Canes fans will watch just to watch, it’s hard not to develop a rooting interest. This might sound blasphemous to those who subscribe to a certain theory, but I’ve found myself rooting for the Pens a little bit more. 

Besides just winning the series against Carolina, they didn’t really do anything to make me hold a grudge (“I’m not even mad - I’m impressed!” a great man once said), and their top-end guys really are a lot of fun to watch when they’re victimizing a team other than your own. Even though they don’t play in Carolina, it’s always nice to see one of Eric’s brothers get a big goal for some reason.

Also, while I have a world of respect for the Red Wings and how they manage to field a Cup contender year after year with no questions asked, I get a little bored with the same team winning in consecutive years. I’m all for some new blood at the top.

I’d be interested to hear how the rest of Carolina fans feel about it. Bitter against Pittsburgh? If you have to lose, would you feel a bit more justified in losing to the eventual champions? Neutral? Not watching?

Also, what’s your pick? With the exception of Games 1 and 3 (Detroit wins the opener at home, Pittsburgh gets a must-win to get back in the series), my gut feeling has been wrong for almost every game so far. My gut is telling me that Detroit gets it done on Friday night, which is great news for Pittsburgh, not that they need the help with a great superstition going their way

For the record, those of us at the RBC Center go way back on that tradition. Occasionally, it’s been known to get out of hand. Has Bylsma ever gone for two? What about three? Yeah, that’s what we thought.  Amateur.

Things are still pretty quiet around the office here – not sure we’ll have any announcements until next week at the earliest, but keep your eyes open all the same.  Updates to come later today.  Update: Confirmed - no announcements this week.

There is one bit of news to report, as there’s been a new addition to the Canes family. Franklin Robert Sundheim (baby behind the guy?) was born this past Saturday at 12:13 p.m. The first-born of Mike and Leah checked in at just under eight pounds, and everyone is healthy and doing just fine. Congratulations to the Sundheims, and please forgive Mike if he doesn’t blog for a little while as he learns the finer points of diaper changing. Doug and Jon, meanwhile, have no excuse.

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 MTL 74 46 20 8 195 162 100
2 NYR 72 46 19 7 219 167 99
3 TBL 74 46 21 7 242 191 99
4 NYI 74 44 25 5 226 205 93
5 PIT 73 40 22 11 202 181 91
6 DET 72 39 21 12 208 195 90
7 WSH 73 39 24 10 212 180 88
8 OTT 72 37 24 11 212 190 85
9 BOS 73 36 25 12 193 190 84
10 FLA 73 33 26 14 180 201 80
11 PHI 75 30 29 16 196 216 76
12 NJD 73 31 31 11 164 186 73
13 CBJ 73 34 35 4 198 228 72
14 CAR 72 26 36 10 165 199 62
15 TOR 74 27 41 6 193 237 60
16 BUF 73 20 46 7 138 245 47

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Faulk 72 14 31 -20 45
E. Staal 67 19 25 -14 44
E. Lindholm 71 16 19 -21 35
J. Skinner 67 18 12 -21 30
V. Rask 70 11 18 -13 29
R. Nash 66 8 16 -11 24
N. Gerbe 68 7 17 -13 24
J. McClement 72 6 13 -4 19
A. Nestrasil 44 6 13 4 19
J. Staal 36 4 14 -9 18
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Ward 18 21 5 .910 2.44
A. Khudobin 8 15 5 .903 2.62