June 07, 2003

Is there anything better than a Game 7 in the Stanley Cup Finals?: Well, come Monday, we'll have Game 7 between the Anaheim Mighty Ducks and the New Jersey Devils. Anaheim beat the Devils 5-2 in Game 6 to force a decisive game in New Jersey.

posted by jasonbondshow to hockey at 10:19 PM - 12 comments

Winning tonight's $12M California lotto? Oh wait, you mean in sports. Um, as a Devils fan I'd have taken victory tonight, though since home team rules in this series clearly we will hoist Cup Monday.

posted by billsaysthis at 11:43 PM on June 07, 2003

Yes, clearly. Why even play the game?

posted by therev at 09:58 AM on June 08, 2003

Can anyone believe Scott Stevens wasn't assessed a penalty at all for that late hit on Kariya? Kariya was at fault for watching his pass, but Stevens knew what he was doing. If Kariya hadn't passed the puck, no problem with the hit, but he took at least two more strides before getting levelled. But, its water under the Pulaski Skyway, or a blazing slap-shot to the far top-right corner. I have to say that if both teams show up, like we've seen they both can, it'll be a toss up on Monday. Anaheim's regulars found their groove last night, and Madden's line can bring it. I give it to the hungrier team, that being the Ducks: they ain't gonna be in the finals next year, assuming the West amends its power structure, and this is the most skilled player in the game's one shot at a cup.

posted by garfield at 10:22 AM on June 08, 2003

Can anyone believe Scott Stevens wasn't assessed a penalty at all for that late hit on Kariya? I can't believe it either. That was clearly a late hit. He wasn't anywhere near the puck. Stevens was pretty defensive about it in the post-game press conference though. "Was it a clean hit? Well, did I get a penalty? There's two refs on the ice." Just because the refs didn't call it doesn't mean it was clean, Scotty.

posted by Succa at 01:07 PM on June 08, 2003

I'm OK with Stevens not being penalized. It was a little late, especially when you see it a thousand times in slow motion, but in the heat of the game, he was really just finishing his check, and only used his body, and all that. I was really happy when he nailed Lindros the same way, and I won't start blaming him now. And now we have a series villain! Of course, I wouldn't be joking if Kariya hadn't come back the way he did. I was surprised he did. It was clearly a concussion, there was a TV shot where you actually saw him "waking up" after a few seconds out cold, and he does have a concussion history. Normally, they'd take great caution with a case like this. My brother even told me, right after the hit, that his career was probably over. Famous last words! I disagree that Kariya is the game's most skilled player, and I also believe that the talent level is much higher on the Devils' side. When they get down to it, they can move the puck in impressive manner. They had a few of these moments yesterday, but couldn't convert. Of course, game 7 is a toss up. I think it's funny how nobody is speaking about the goalies anymore. They've been deceptively average in the last two games. Victory is probably going to go the team whose goalie raises his game a step, and steals one or two goals.

posted by qbert72 at 01:15 PM on June 08, 2003

It was a borderline non-call, but with his history of blindsiding people, I think he should be more carefully scrutinized...repeat offender type of deal. Steven's is one of the most celebrated NHL defencemen, but he does have a tendency to appear like he wants to injury people, and not just take them out of the play. 'Most skilled player' is something I've heard Kariya referred to as by some broadcaster. Obviously the characterization is subjective and debatable. But its undeniable that when he is on, he is a magician with the puck. He may not be as dynamic as Mogilny, or as flashy as Bure, but the guy can put the puck where ever he wants. I think the both teams decided they both can play smothering D, and figured instead of playing 8 periods a night, that they'll let this series come down to who can score more....I don't even think the D are suiting up for tonight's game. I think Coach Burns was quoted as saying they are 'expendable'.

posted by garfield at 10:23 AM on June 09, 2003

As much as I hate the Devils, I just don't see them being beaten on their home ice tonight. And if Marty doesn't come up huge, I'll eat my mask. 4-2 to New Jersey.

posted by wfrazerjr at 11:07 AM on June 09, 2003

The NHL VP for refereeing (forget the name) was quoted in the Mercury News as saying that he watched the video frame by frame and the hit was clean because: a) Stevens used shoulder b) took place less than one second after puck left Kariya's possession. Given all the other non-calls in the game, and series, this one doesn't seem (and didn't at the time) to be a problem.

posted by billsaysthis at 03:33 PM on June 09, 2003

I had no idea there was a 1 second guide line for late hits. I assumed it was a judgment call based on game play. And if Kariya's career had ended, which it very well could have ('Paging the pre-concussed Lindros'), I think there would be a huge problem with the non-call (btw, they gave the Ducks the call immediately after play resumed: the refs knew they muffed it). But enough 'if'ing. Drop the puck already!!!

posted by garfield at 04:34 PM on June 09, 2003

Nice look back at other Cup final game 7's here. That NYR-Van game was a beauty.

posted by Succa at 06:16 PM on June 09, 2003

I thought it was a clean hit. Kariya barely got his foot up to take a second step before he got clocked. The only reason it looks like a late hit is because of the slow-mo instant replays. If I were to put money down on tonight's game, I'd put it on New Jersey. But I'm not, so I'm picking the Ducks to win. In overtime. TRIPLE OVERTIME! (mainly because I need that to happen if I'm going to be able to watch any of the game tonight...2 hour drive home from where I am right now)

posted by grum@work at 06:43 PM on June 09, 2003

As much as it pains me to say this, I will try my best. Deep breaths. *gaaaaaasp* GO DUCKS GO! *suffocates* ...ppphhhheeeeeeeeeeewwwwwww. That was rough.

posted by Succa at 07:05 PM on June 09, 2003

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