Thursday, April 12, 2007

Sens v. Pens

This exchange was written before game1 took much for being the "match-up I couldn't wait to see..."

Senators (4) v. Penguins (5)

This is the match-up I can't wait to see.

The Penguins had to be the hottest team in the second half, playing over .700 hockey and threatening to catch Jersey for the second seed. They have an outstanding group of forwards, led by the best player in the game. At the opposite end of the ice, and perhaps of more interest, is how these Penguins managed to put up such spectacular numbers while icing a defensive corps that's built around a top 3 of Sergei Gonchar, Orpik and Whitney.

Meanwhile in Kanata, the Senators have all the depth and experience in this series, but they also have all the baggage.

I think this series will turn on game 1. If the Pens can put doubts in the Sens heads; if the post-game scrums are all about the c-word (CHOKE!) and if the Sens fail to expose the Penguin's youth, suspect D and uncertain goaltending the Pens will win it in 6.

If the Sens can come out of the gate and show who's boss, best player in the NHL or not, this one will be over in 5 and Ottawa will march through to the Semis...


Hey Mike, that was two "if's" ...what's your pick?

I've said it before, maybe even on this blog, that being a Sens fan is a lot like dating a brilliant, beautiful, funny woman...who cheats on you.

Every year, you take her back, you think it might be different this time around...and then it happens again.

You end up spending equal parts of your time wondering "if it's going to be different this time" and "what new humiliation is in store"? This metaphor is handy because it also explains why Sens fans hate the Leafs so much (you can't blame the have to hate the Dude she's cheating with more...) So I'm not doing it. I love her, I mean, them...but it's gonna take a couple of weeks of fancy meals, foot rubs and various other forms of special treatment, before I allow my hopes to be picked up.

The Senators SHOULD win. They have better goaltending and a much better D but... Pens in Seven

BTW Mike, I'd say "tell your coffee cup to try out for Raycroft's spot" but I think he'd be more suited on the Leaf blueline (he'd be at least as fast a skater as Wade Belak...)

Done - the coffee cup has been signed to the Leafs D with a five year, $25M deal including a no-movement clause.

This GM stuff is a breeze...

I'm not allowed to like the Sens.

I was brainwashed from the age of like two, Leafs good, Sens bad. Not to mention my co-blogger would probably never speak to me again if I said anything bad about her precious Penguins.

That said, if we're just looking at numbers and records and all that good stuff, it does seem like the Senators have the edge. I could go on about the Sens choking and the Pens youth, but I think if the Penguins play their cards right, they can even make that an advantage - they're a bunch of kids thrilled to be playing hockey in the playoffs, and sure they want to win, but they don't have that desperation to save face that Ottawa does. Then again that could work just as easily the other way around.

This is by far the most interesting matchup and it's too bad I can't get the game tonight because Chinese internet TV is more interested in giving me "ESPNBrazil" which as far as I can tell looks to be spreading The Wizard of Oz dubbed over with Pink Floyd's The Wall to the masses. Uhhh.

I'm going to say Pens in 7, but I think the first couple games of the series will decide it all.

Wow!! Sounds like a lot of conflicted Leaf fans are having a hard time picking the better team in this series.

Of course, I would have the same problem if Calgary was the better team in any series but thankfully they are not this year and even if they were I would still pick the other team.

Like many people, Syd the Kid's crew reminds me of the young Oilers of the early 80's, but you have to remember that it took a couple of years for those Oilers to find their way so I think it is a bit premature to start planning a parade in Pittsburgh.

I picked several Senators in my draft. I like the fact that they faced some adversity this year and did not peak too soon during the reg. season like in years past. I am not completely sold on Emery but he is solid and gives them a chance to win every game unlike Fleury who still has the penchant for giving up a weak goal from time to time and is still dodging the ghosts of Patrick O'Sullivan's goal in the 2003 WJC.

This time next year I might pick differently but this year it will be the Sen's in 6.

Coffee Cup: Pens in 6

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