Tuesday, April 24, 2007

New York Area Professional Hockey Update

(cross-posted belatedly from Marginal Utility)

No, I didn't expect the Berubes to sweep the Thrashers.

I had been thinking all week about writing a post about my naivete in taking Scott Burnside at his word in this post when he said they one thing I wanted to hear:
With Brodeur having played in 78 games, the theory is that, at some point, he will begin to wear down. It's more wishful thinking on the part of opponents than a real theory, though. Even if it does happen, don't expect it to happen in the first round.

I noted at the time that they were "Burnside's words, not mine," but I believed them.

For most of Games 2 and 3, and for the second period of Game 4, Brodeur looked human.

Since then, he's been Brodeur. And tonight he reminded everyone why, even those who would pick Roberto Luongo around whom to build a team (due to the age difference), there's no better right now.

As the Anonymous commenter said in the previous post at Marginal Utility, "Not to mention that [Burnside] takes shaky TB goaltending tandem to out duel Brodeur in game seven at The Swamp." That would have to happen now for the Lightning to take the series. Not currently the way to bet.

As for the series involving two New York State teams, I've noted elsewhere and before that I will never begrudge Buffalo getting a break from the officiating. But it would have been nice to see them have to go another game or two, since my best-case scenario right now has the Sabres playing every game in the first two rounds in the State of New York. As a friend who has managed to watch their games said, though, "I thought Buffalo was a fast team during the regular season, but the Islanders [played] right with them."

The future is encouraging.

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