The Stanley Cup is so close to being handed over to its rightful owner. It’s so close I can hear the excuses, bitterness and self-righteous tweets swirling around in my head. Therefore I will focus on the hoopla surrounding the epic Vancouver and Boston Game 7.
Being a lifelong Blackhawks fan, and Flames blogger, as if there needs to be any more motivation to root for the Bruins on Wednesday night. But here is some motivation for other people to throw their black and yellow on for the game.
Here are the Top-Five reasons one might be cheering for the Bruins.
**WARNING: contains biased views and was posted apologetically**
5.) Vancouver’s poor, poor choice of words:
Starting with the top, all the way down, it starts with Canucks GM Mike Gilles. He loves complaining about the officiating. Maybe it’s a Gretzky in Salt-Lake City kind of thing with Gilles. Maybe it’s his way of shifting some of the pressure off his players and onto his own shoulders.
Either way, he’s been blasting the ‘uneven officiating’ since the Chicago series. It comes off as whiny to me; also a little poor sport-ish and desperate. His latest beef is obviously with the Johnny Boychuk hit on Mason Raymond, which was a freak injury off a hockey play that happens all the time. There are no conspiracies.
Bettman isn’t pulling strings. The refs make the best calls they can make and things just happen the way they happen. And I’m not even going to touch on the Horton-Rome incident.
The snide little insult Roberto Luongo snuck in on Tim Thomas after Maxim Lapierre’s Game 5 winner got under a lot of people’s skin. It did for good reason too. You don’t say things like that towards a fellow goalie, whose jockstrap you can’t really even hold right now. Bobby Lou is not making it easy for non-Canuck fans to like him. End of story.
Finally, just today in fact, Daniel Sedin all but guaranteed victory. Not my favourite move in pro sports, so there you go. Here’s to Henrik hopefully eating his words.
4.) Alex, Raffi and Max:
Lets just say these fellas won’t be vacationing at Martha’s Vineyard this offseason.
Alex Burrows topped his hair-pull move on Duncan Keith last year, by biting Patrice Bergeron’s finger this year. He subsequently went on to score one of the biggest goals of the series in overtime the next game. Many thought he would be suspended. I didn’t, but many did. Burrows is the kind of guy any opposing fan-base will inevitably come to hate within the first 5 minutes over a 7-game series.
Oh yeah, and the enigmatic and sometimes downright evil smirk Maxim Lapierre has on his face when he chirps. I’m not sure whether he’s speaking French or English, but someone needs to punch him in the teeth.
3.) Just imagine what would happen if Vancouver loses:
Come on, you have to admit it would be very interesting to see what Mike Gilles does if Vancouver bows out for the third straight year. Alain Vigneault could get fired. Luongo might get traded. Gilles may step down. Or Gilles could blow up the roster. Imagine the storylines coming from the west coast if Boston wins.
The fact is, the Vancouver Canucks are as good as a hockey team can be right now. In the cap era, you’re not going to get a more solid roster together than this one.
The media, including everyone on Twitter, and their dog, will tear this team apart for months to come in a very LeBron James-like fashion. I, for one, really want to see that.
2.) The Fan-base:
The Vancouver Fan-base is at the height of its obnoxiousness right about now. I’m not sure where they all came from, but my guess is the woodworks.
In Canada, you tend to get Canuck fandemonium rubbed in your face almost everywhere you go, by people who would otherwise not give a damn about a hockey game.
Every car has a Canucks flag, or four, hanging off the windows. I’ve never seen a Canucks car flag in southern Alberta until about 3 months ago.
I would say close to half their fans would tell you with complete arrogance and ignorance, that Gary Bettman is single-handedly pulling strings in this series.
The bottom line is that while these Cup finals have brought fans across Canada together in unity, they have all turned into complete dicks.
I want to see how many jerseys, car flags and Kesler shirts are lingering around if Vancouver loses. I want to see who’s ready to talk some trash at the bar or in the streets after Luongo is left in tears–again.
Do it for the Fan-base, Boston; for your own and Vancouver’s.
1.) Tim Thomas:
I want to go have a beer or two with Tim Thomas right now. I’m pretty sure everyone does. He’s twice as humble as he is skilled and he refuses to get pulled into off-ice nonsense. The 37 year-old who never truly busted into the NHL until 2005 is the speculated favorite to win his second Vezina and first Conn Smythe. In these finals he has let in 9 goals to Luongo’s 24 and has done it with a smile on his face from the outset.
I find it’s even tough to find a Vancouver fan with a bad thing to say about this guy. In my humble opinion, Tim Thomas deserves to hoist the Stanley Cup more than anyone on the ice, maybe in the league. Go Bruins. Go Thomas.