So the tides have apparently turned! Media and Sharks' fans alike have come alive and decided that San Jose is going to become the 3rd team ever to come back from a 0-3 hole. And they just might do so ... but I highly doubt it. The difference in this series is that Dallas has lost the last 2 games after taking a 3-0 lead, where as against Anaheim, they had leads of 2-0 and 3-1. The summary is still the same ... Dallas has played like the better team. It takes 4 wins to win a series and nothing less. No one believed the STARS would roll in and sweep the Sharks. The fact that they went up 3-0 might have changed opinions of what could be ... but the original thoughts still hold true. Personally, I picked Dallas to win in 6. Would I have loved them in 4 or 5? Of course! They actually played well enough to do that. But in today's professional sports, any given team can win on any given day. Dallas proved that in games 1 and 3, and San Jose has done it in games 4 and 5. Even if Dallas loses game 6, they can still win game 7 ... you just never really know until the final buzzer sounds (unless you are Colorado!).
No doubt last night should have had a different outcome ... the STARS really deserved better. Had Morrow's 1st no-goal have stood, the complexion of the game would have changed dramatically. Not a single person in this world will convince me that Brendan, WITHOUT LOOKING DOWN, and trying to stop before slamming into Nabokov or the crossbar, used a distinct kicking motion
to score that goal. It was a ridiculous ruling from Toronto, one without any merit or sensibility ... and the fact that one of the officials above was smiling like a little school girl, made it all the worse! People like to say that it made up for Marleau's no-goal in game 3 ... I disagree. The official in game 3 lost sight of the puck and CLEARLY blew the play dead BEFORE Marleau scored. Last night, the puck was in the net and the official signaled the goal was good ... only to be overturned by the powers-that-be in Toronto. Brendan's 2nd no-goal was correctly called off because the puck touched his glove last before crossing the line. However, since when is getting cross-checked in the back, into the net, not a penalty? Brendan obviously batted the puck down with his glove, WITH THE INTENTION of entombing it in the net with his stick. He never got the chance ... and where was that call?
The one bright side to all the Morrow controversy is this -- THE MAN IS A FORCE!
He is one helluva captain and between the 2 of them in this series (and with all due credit and no disrespect to Patrick Marleau), give me Brendan Morrow EVERY TIME!
San Jose simply CANNOT
shut down his line, period. Even with Big Joe playing them heads up, Morrow-Ribeiro-Lehtinen spend most of their time in the Sharks' zone. The puck went in the net FOUR times last night via that line. Not all of them counted on the sheet, but they were in ... which speaks volumes.
All that being said, Dallas ended up with a 2-0 lead going into the 3rd period ... that really should have been enough and usually, the STARS are money in that situation. They did end up out shooting the Sharks and played an overall good game. Though fantastic individual efforts, both Campbell's and Pavelski's goals were stoppable and I would assume Marty would like to have had another chance at them. Again, however, the Sharks were able to do enough to win the last 2 games. I do not believe they overly outplayed us, nor do I believe the STARS should be worried. They are still the team that is one win away from Detroit. It is their series to win and they have earned that spot. I have a feeling last night pissed them off and they are going to come out tomorrow night and LEAVE NO DOUBT!
As for Versus and the NHL powers-that-be ... are we not entitled to better? ONE playoff game last night, nationally televised, and the best you can do is a 9pm CST, puck drop??? Furthermore, the majority of people who got the game did NOT get the feed in HD ... at least here in Dallas? Last but not least, as usual the Versus crew might as well have been wearing Teal. It would sure be nice to hear some unbiased commentating for once. I'm not sure how they would have fit in one more comment about Joe's magical passing
! Or how about continually mispronouncing Jere Lehtinen's name? And the fact that "Cheechoo is not known for physical hits
"? (that one actually made me laugh out loud!) It was almost as if they had NO CLUE that the Dallas STARS even played in the NHL. It is an embarrassment and a slight on Dallas and their fans. What a joke!
Like many STARS' fans, I may have been a bit disappointed when I woke up this morning. I definitely was upset with the way the calls went, and may even have had a little seed of doubt form (with the 33-year theory, etc.). But I had my coffee and, thanks to Bob Sturm on 1310 the Ticket
), refocused my thoughts towards the positive and remembered what got our Dallas STARS to this place. Besides, should we really put too much stock into a theory that runs parallel to another president being assassinated between 2063 and 2065? (Lincoln in 1865 and Kennedy in 1963) Therefore, I would like to revert back to something I said well before the playoffs started...
I am a Stars' fan no matter what! No matter what the final score is or how it happens, I will be rooting for my Dallas Stars. No more bickering, or complaining about the refs, or hanging my head in defeat. NOPE! Until the NHL schedule tells me that Dallas is done for the season, I will be in attendance or in front of the TV, cheering them on.
So until the schedule tells me Detroit will play San Jose in the Western Conference Finals, I will continue to believe
that Detroit will host Dallas! I believe
the STARS have earned that.
By the way, my prediction meter was inexplicably off but it is because I was a game early ... I'm still calling for a STARS' blowout! Somewhere around 5-1!