History has been made in the 2010 Playoffs, and we might not have seen it all yet.
The East has had its share of surprises and has been nothing short of terrific hockey. Whether it’s the third ever 3-0 series comeback by the Flyers, or the surprising Canadiens - eliminating both the President’s Trophy winning Capitals and defending Stanley Cup Champion, Penguins, the East Playoffs have been absolutely spectacular.
While we might not yet have witnessed anything similar over in the West, an interesting story is slowly developing. Not totally obvious though, is its connection to the currently-golfing Maple Leafs.
The Chicago Blackhawks reached the Western Championship for the second consecutive season, and, after sweeping the San Jose Sharks in four games, have advanced to their first Stanley Cup Final since 1992. They are major cup contenders, and more importantly, are the overwhelming favourites against either 7th-seeded Philadelphia or 8th-seeded Montreal.
Here’s where the Leafs come in.
It’s well known in Leafs Nation that the last parade down Yonge Street with the Cup was in 1967. Even though it’s quite the draught, it’s not today’s longest. That title goes to – you guessed it – the Blackhawks. Fans of the Blue and White may not realize, but Chicago’s last NHL championship was six years earlier – in 1961, and so the record for the longest active Stanley Cup draught belongs to them.
But with the 2010 edition of the Hawks making a serious run, everything could potentially change. Chicago has a huge chance to win it all this year. In doing so, they would make franchise and NHL history, as the dreadful record would be handed over to Toronto.
Leaf fans, including myself, most likely despise the thought, but don’t be surprised to see it happen. After-all, history is being made these playoffs. Why stop now?