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Nathan Douglas

Stanley Cup Playoffs

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It's getting late in the post-season, so this thread won't have nearly as much speculation as it would have a month ago, but is anybody here following this year's playoffs? I confess I usually stop paying attention when my team gets knocked out (and as a Leafs fan for the last decade, this is a certainty whenever they do make the play-offs - but since reconnecting with my Canucks roots a couple years ago I'm finding a similar fan cynicism alive and well on the west coast), but this year has been so full of surprises with the other match-ups, that it's proving compelling enough to keep me watching.

A day before Vancouver got booted, I found myself won over by Montreal's never-say-die Game 6 performance against Pittsburgh. Being born-and-bred in Ontario, I would never dream of cheering for the Habs, ever, and yet I can't help but do so now, and not just out of the usual nationalist habit of going for whatever Canadian team is left in the running. They've got the perfect narrative going for them, being the underdog, but when they play well, it's a joy to watch.

Ditto for Chicago. Local pride dictates that I loathe them (and the loss still stings), but once again, I can't help but be impressed by how they play. Is it me, or does it seem like this year's playoffs feel more desperate, more passionate, more heartfelt than in previous years? I don't remember playoff hockey being this exciting, or unpredictable.

So, for final matchup, I'm hoping for Chicago and Montreal. And I think I'd be fine with either getting it, with a slight edge for the Habs. I'm going lukewarm on the Sharks and really don't like the thought of Philly hoisting the cup.

Anyone else have thoughts or predictions?

P.S. With all of the Olympic fever petered out, it's kind of funny and sad to see how Stanley Cup coverage (in Canada at least) seems to have completely overshadowed the World Hockey Championships, where Canada has fared dismally. We're too busy with the NHL to mourn.

Edited by N.W. Douglas

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Um, yeah. Go Nederland! U.S.A., U.S.A.! I REALLY tune out when the 'Wings leave the scene. I take little solace in the animosities of a 'Wings fan though I did enjoy the fact that "America's Team" got dumped a little early (Penguins). No self respecting Detroiter ever routes for a Chicago team, so I'm eagerly awaiting the World Cup Finals in South Africa.

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