I think my feelings are best summed up in a quote from Anchorman
[Wes Mantooth to Ron Burgandy]
From deep down in my stomach, with every inch of me, I pure, straight hate you. But dog-gone-it, do I respect you!
I sincerely hate the Red Wings, as any true-blooded fan of another team does ... but when the last save was made and the boys from Hockeytown
were celebrating, I could not help but admire what they had accomplished. No doubt that admiration has so much more to do with the Stanley Cup than Detroit, but this season's champs are those Wings and my hat is off to them.
As with the President of the United States, to me it does not matter who the man or woman is that holds the office ... I respect the position, the history, and the responsibility. Same goes for winning the Cup ... to be able to play 82 games and then somehow find a way to get 16 more wins, in as many as 28 more games, is an unbelievable feat. The Wings pulled off that feat and for that they enjoyed the pleasure of lifting Lord Stanley's Cup! I pure, straight hate them, but dog-gone-it, I respect them!
The Penguins simply had nothing left in the tank ... they played their butts off and have nothing to be ashamed of. We may never know how badly Gonchar is hurt but I have a completely new admiration for that guy. Lots of players play hurt, but he probably should not have been playing in this game and definitely not after Draper (with yet another cheap shot) slammed his face into the boards. Kudos to the Pens for fighting the good fight ... they've got a helluva team and there is no reason to believe they will not be in the Finals for many years to come.
*Good to see Chelios grace the handshake line with his presence ... what a (hypocritical) pleasure! (hate him the same!)
*Drake & Stuart - long time coming and well deserved 1st Cup (hate them even more now!)
*Conn Smythe deservingly goes to Zetterberg.
Along with That's-Yuk
and their all-world talent (and pansy/cocky/lucky plays), they were unstoppable. Holmstrom did what he does best ... screen (interfere with) the goalie and score ugly goals. (I hate them all even more! I cannot wait for teams to adjust even a little bit next year and make them pay for some of those cocky centering passes in front of their own net - of which there were a TON.)
*Franzen, Draper, Maltby ... hate, hate, hate!
*Hossa stepped up HUGE in this series! Sid the Kid wasn't the best Captain but he certainly fills that role nicely for such a young man. Malkin, Staal, Sykora ... much to look forward to next year!
*The only major Wing I cannot bring myself to talk bad about is the Captain, Nick Lidstrom. I see too much of Zubov in him, and visa-versa. He is pretty much the perfect player and without question the best defenseman in the league. Though I could never in my heart get rid of Zubie, I sure wouldn't mind them paired up together!
*Shout out and congrats to former STARS' great Aaron Downey
!!! I'm very happy for and proud of him. We will never forget the one-punch KO of Jesse Boulerice!
*Another shout out and congrats to another former STARS' great, Darryl Sydor
. He almost got his 3rd Cup and it was nice to see the Pen's coaching staff get their heads out and finally put him on the ice. His leadership was obvious and he played a great series.
This year was all-around, flat-out PHENOMINAL!
My STARS had a great run and the entire playoffs was an absolute treat to watch. Aside from a game 7, this Finals' series was about as good as it possibly could have been. What a year it was and I cannot wait for next year! Is it October yet?
***Before all you Red Wing fans comment on me being a hater, please read the first two paragraphs!***