After last night’s game four, I’m convinced that anyone outside of Boston and Vancouver can’t stand both teams.
In game three, Aaron Rome knocked out Nathan Horton. Rome was ejected and suspended and you thought it would just end there. That was far from the truth. With the Bruins leading, the game degenerated into scrumfest. Daniel Sedin, Andrew Ference (twice), Shawn Thornton, Alex Burrows, Ryan Kesler, Milan Lucic, Kevin Bieska and Dennis Seidenberg were all given ten minute major misconducts in the third period. Kesler and Seidenberg even dropped the gloves.
Throughout the series the two teams have traded alleged bites, taunts, slashes, elbows, sucker punches, anything you can think of. Point is both teams have made this a dirty, dirty series. Some have defended it, calling it “Old Time Hockey.” No, no, incorrect. Old timers would be embarrassed that this is the Stanley Cup Final. Think Bobby Orr would approve of finger taunting? No way.
Last night the bad blood kept going late in the third period.
It all started (restarted?) when Brad Marchand and Christian Ehrhoff were racing for a puck in the Canucks’ zone. Marchand tried to go around Ehrhoff and with his free hand, semi-clotheslined the defenseman. Daniel Sedin skated in and Marchand ducked under him and dumped him. The only positive thing Keith Ballard did all night was grab Marchand. (Sidenote: Wow, was Ballard brutal last night.) That put the Nucks on the powerplay. Of course, it didn’t last long, as Alex Burrows slashed Tim Thomas’ stick out of his hands, resulting in a Thomas chop across Burrows’ calves. Burrows had enough and round two began. Kesler and Zdeno Chara picked up misconducts, and their nights were done.
Rooting for a team in this series is almost like picking the lesser of two evils. One can root for a team because they hate one team more, but feel dirty for doing so.
Last year’s Cup Finalists, the Blackhawks and Flyers, are pretty well unliked throughout the league, and they didn’t even garner this much negative attention.
My plea for both teams for the remaining games is play for the Stanley Cup. The trophy that’s awarded to the best team in hockey. Not the team who can dive or scrum best. Play hockey, guys.