How do you predict who’s going to win the Stanley Cup when you have two teams that never met in the finals? Tonight is Game One of the Stanley Cup Finals between the Boston Bruins and the Chicago Blackhawks and it will be a battle of the Original Six. Not since 1979 have two Original Six franchises met in the Finals and not since EVER has Boston battled Chicago for Lord Stanley’s Cup. What we have here is the best of the best from the Eastern and Western Conferences and as we’ve seen with playoffs this season, things can go either way.
The Bruins and Blackhawks never got a chance to play one another during regular season due to the shortened 48-game season. So the last time they met was October of 2011 where Tim Thomas helped the B’s pull off a shoot-out victory. Now Timmy is gone and it’s Tuukka Rask who is the Bruins starting goalie. Rask will face off against Corey Crawford in net, who coincidentally was in net for the that loss in 2011.
B’s Sweeping Success:
The Bruins knocked out the HEAVILY favored Pittsburgh Penguins in just four games to win the Eastern Conference title. Not only has Rask been spectacular in net allowing the Penguins just two goals in the entire series, but our defense has stopped top NHL scorers, and we have the leading offensive scorer David Krejci on our side. What makes the Bruins as good as they are is the fact that the team as a whole is producing results. All four lines and all defensive pairs have contributed to the B’s post season victories. In fact the game winner of Game Four against the Pens was defenseman and Masterton Trophy nominee Adam McQuaid.
Now the B’s will be without Gregory Campbell for the remainder of the postseason but fortunately Coach Claude Julien has many men capable of filling the void. Kaspars Daugavins was Soupys replacement for Game Four but it’s unknown if he’ll be in the lineup for tonight.
Blackhawks Ready for Battle:
Chicago had the best record of any team with the regular season but their success in the playoffs hasn’t come easy. They’re preparing for their biggest and most important battle yet with the Bruins. Yesterday in their practice, it appeared that all four lines would be changed up to prepare for the B’s. One of the moves took easily the Blackhawk of the moment Patrick Kane off top line with Captain Jonathan Toews. Kane is coming off of a Game Five hattrick (including the double OT winner) against the LA Kings. As for how well these new lines will do, tonight will be the judge of that.
NBC will be airing the Stanley Cup Finals and the puck will drop tonight at 8pm!
BELIEVE IN BOSTON!