OPPOSITION BLOGS: Stanley Cup of Chowder, The Bruins Report, Hub Hockey
Going to write this one tonight because chances are I won't get up early enough to write it in the morning. The Hawks invade the shithole that is Boston, MA (i lived there, I have every right to say it) to take on the Bruins above North Station. For some reason, I don't feel a buzz about this game that it deserves. After all, here are two of the seven teams that everyone agrees are Cup contenders (the others being SJ, Scum, Calgary, DC, and NJ). The last two these two teams met was one of the games of the year, a 1-1 draw after which Boston was declared the winner after a coin toss (or might as well have been).
The Bruins have slowed down, just a tad, lately. Especially at home, where they've lost three in a row. Some have argued that Alex Semin's OT winner from the redline has cursed the B's, remains to be seen. Some have questioned the credentials of the B's, who still have a decent sized lead atop the East. I wouldn't. You won't find a team stronger down the middle than the Olde Towne Hockey team, with Savard, Bergeron, and Krejci (if the rumors are true that Bergeron may be on the block in the summer, the Hawks should definitely make a call. Yes, he's concussion prone, and a tad expensive. But this guy is a plus player in both ends, and would give the Hawks depth at center that everyone would be jealous of. But that's another discussion for another time.)
The Bruins also have a strong d-corps. Zdeno Chara is getting a lot of Norris buzz, but between you and me, he hasn't even been the best d-man on his own team. Watch Dennis Wideman tomorrow (you can call him Big Money Wides, if you like) and you tell me who's been better. Chara's size and paycheck is throwing people off the scent. That's not to say Chara hasn't been phenomenal this year, because he has. The B's have the best goaltending tandem in the league as well, though you can expect Tim Thomas to start getting the load now as we roll toward the playoffs. People are still sleeping on The Tank, but he's been solid for four years now, great for two, so it's time to accept him as elite. There is not a more entertaining goalie in the league to watch than Thomas. He'll leave more holes open then mice on coke, and yet he always scrambles to make the save. In fact, smart money tells you he might be starting for the US in Vancouver. Certainly Ryan Miller's backup, at the very least.
Despite their recent struggles (2-4-1), this will not be easy. The B's play a very assured, defensively solid game, and their physical, too. We know the Hawks hate that. However, past the top pair, the B's D can be a little lumbering, perhaps there is some joy to be found there. However, with the addition of Recchi, the B's now boast 8 forwards who can beat you, so the Hawks must stay out of the box and play their own defensively sound game. A win here would be huge, let's go get it.
NOTE: I've uploaded February's issues of The Committed Indian to the Back Issues page on the left there. There's only three. Enjoy.