For a neutral, last night worked out pretty well because a Game 7 in the Stanley Cup final is pretty much the hockey fan's heaven's bourne.
Sure, it would have been more exciting if Game 6 had been close and more tense throughout -- rather than filled with the garbage time chippiness that's almost defined this series. But it was some consolation to see Roberto Luongo give Tim Thomas another reason not to pump his tires. (How often does a star athlete talk smack and then step in it the very next outing?)
So on we go to Game 7 Wednesday night. By that time, maybe Mikko Koskinen will have decided his favorite moment from Draft Day:
- Very cool write-up on P.A. Parenteau's long, hard road to regular NHL work. PAP was part of "the worst trade in Moncton Wildcats history." (That's a compliment.)
- Dee got some cool pictures and neat two-question interviews with the prospects who were signing autographs yesterday. Tony Romano, Aaron Ness, Matt Donovan, Calvin de Haan and Mikko Koskinen all had something to say. But Koskinen really, really, really thought long and hard about what his favorite moment from his draft day was. I think he's hiding something.
- Oh, did someone mention the draft? The annual "anything can happen" story is out, with Newsday's Katie Strang getting Garth Snow to say he's open to anything (i.e., trade up, trade down, stand pat, trade it for an established player) and Chris Botta saying external sources have indicated the same.
- Also according to Strang, Jonathan Huberdeau visited Long Island yesterday, Dougie Hamilton and Sean Couturier visit today, and Ryan Murphy visits Wednesday.
- Here is Red Line Report's mock draft. [You can download a PDF at that link.]
- LHH-centric: Our Lighthouse Hockey Mock NHL Draft accelerated through the turn last night, as picks for Phoenix at 20, then Ottawa at 21, and Anaheim at 22 were all posted. The list of all 22 picks thus far has now been updated. Rocco Grimaldi was one of those picks; here's a Q&A with him.
- On the "legality" questions of the areener referendum: Let There Be Light(house) | DP's [joints]...LHH FanPost
- Sound Tigers: Top goals of 2010-11
- This tale about previous Canucks appearance(s) in the finals is so weird, because I remember 1982, but I'm pretty sure their version of 1994 never happened.
- An accounting of the scoring chances last night indicates it was as bad as your eyes and the scoreboard said it was.
- Fan reactions to last night: The Chowders are relieved to live another day. | Many at Nucks Misconduct still have faith in Luongo. As well they should, since he's a great goalie and he'll probably bounce back (again). But man is he making it hard for me to like him. Starting to come off as a "born on third base thinking he hit a triple" type.
- Not that the Bruins are likeable (outside of Thomas), which is why this series has become so difficult to stomach. Here's Brad Marchand punching Daniel Sedin.
- Not like anything will come of it, because no one fights in the playoffs.
- A Canuck I do like, Mason Raymond, suffered a major injury early in last night's game. ... And here's another, Kevin Bieksa, talking about getting on with Game 7.
- In Washington, Bruce Boudreau is preaching the patience -- but how long can fans dig it?
- It sounds like the NHL is serious about this whole headshot thing. Rule 48's expansion passes the competition committee. Brendan Shanahan discusses.
Finally, this fantastic exploration of Daniel Alfredsson's injury that necessitated surgery reminds me that: 1) As players get older, their risk of breakdown increases, and 2) As great players struggle, the first best guess is usually, "He's playing through some kind of injury." Seriously, that's a great, detailed analysis -- albeit a little uncomfortable for those of us who've had bulging discs before.