The Longest Odds; plus Lundqvist, Richards, the PP mess
Remember “The Longest Yard”? These are the longest odds:
Only three teams have come back from 0-3 to win a series: the 1942 Toronto Maple Leafs (against the Red Wings), the 1975 Islanders (against the Penguins), and the 2010 Flyers (against the Bruins). These Rangers aren’t as offensively gifted as those Flyers and this edition of the Bruins is better.
Again, as I typed before my laptop froze in the MSG pressroom around 11:30 p.m. and lost some of my files, do you really want to hear about the bounces? Please. Luck is the residue of design, and in hockey, hustle and talent. The bigger, deeper Bruins have had more of both in two of the three games and will bounce the Rangers, if not in four, I imagine in five. I certainly thought this would be a longer series.
I’ve written this last year but it bears repeating, Henrik Lundqvist is the second coming of Don Mattingly. One of best players of his era at the position and nothing to show except individual awards.
If Anton Stralman and Chris Kreider are out for Game 4, who comes in? Darroll Powe? Matt Gilroy? Marc Staal, whose loss was large? Powe was on that Flyers team that rallied against the Bruins, but….We’ll get a read at noon practice.
One more time: The series changes with a power play goal or two. Fans have an absolute right to be infuriated. A five percent success rate? I have a better chance of having a big old safe drop out of a skyscraper window and hit me on the street. The coaches have to take the blame, but will not take the fall. Not in a 48-game season.
Notice how the Bruins, and a lot of teams, are far better down the middle. We’ve chronicled the demise of Brad Richards, who Torts wanted here and is nearing the end of his stay on Broadway.. Brian Boyle was up and down. Derek Stepan and Derick Brassard are keepers. Your boys need a center (again) and a scoring forward and a dose of J.T. Miller and maybe Dylan McIlrath next season, when the realignment will make it even tougher to make the playoffs.
More later, as the curtain descends...