Red Wings, Finish Them!

Are you hoping for the Pittsburgh Penguins to comeback in their series against Detroit? Hoping for some more drama, much like we've witnessed in the past playoff series?

I'm not. I hope that the Detroit Red Wings will finish off the Pittsburgh Penguins quickly in the Stanley Cup Finals.

Up 2-0 in the series heading into Pittsburgh, the situation is simple. If the Red Wings can steal a game on the road, they will have a near unbreakable stranglehold in the series.

So why am I hoping for the Penguins to lose for a second straight year in the Stanley Cup Finals? There are really a number of reasons.

The longer the series is extended, the more the media will go on and on about the greatness of Sidney Crosby. Don't get me wrong, Sidney Crosby has proven to be a sold player since he joined the NHL, but sometimes it seems he gets all of the attention from the media. When it comes right down to it, I just don't have a lot of respect for Crosby.

Crosby is a good player, but he often acts like he is the greatest player out there. The media seems to reflect this point as they are quick to throw praise the way of Sidney Crosby. While Crosby has already garnered many personal accolades, it can be argued that he is not in fact the best player on his team, much less the league.

Heading into the finals, Crosby's teammate, Evgeni Malkin, was tied with Crosby for the playoff lead in points. Malkin has had an incredible postseason, yet it seems like the majority of times we have heard any news about him has been when he has struggled. In the postseason, Malkin has proven to be just as valuable as Sidney Crosby.

I have played sports with teammates who always seem to hog the spotlight, and I can tell you that those players don't have the respect of their teammates.

Another reason, besides my dislike for Sidney Crosby, would be the fact that Detroit's style of hockey is just so exciting to watch. Detroit is an aggressive team, yet hardly a dirty one. Sure, they've gotten into a few fights and rubbed a few teams the wrong way, but they are more likely to try to beat a team with their skill and their fists.

The Red Wings are a very skilled team, and some of the plays they set up are amazing. Detroit also likes to keep the play in the opposing team's end of the ice, and they often accomplish this for long periods of time.

And just how many times do the Red Wings stay conservative with a lead?

If anything, Detroit seems to keep the pressure on even in the dying moments of a game.

Heading into the finals, many people stated that Detroit didn't have the motivation to win the Stanley Cup. Two wins later and it appears these critics have been silenced. Detroit may not be the most enthusiastic team there is, but when they approach a big game, they are all business. It is evident when you see the success they have had over the years.

It is because of these reasons, plus the fact that Detroit always takes so many risks, that I am really pulling for Detroit in the Stanley Cup Finals.

I am not a Red Wings fan by nature, but there is just something about their style of hockey that makes me hope they finish off the Pittsburgh Penguins quickly.

It may be the fact that the Penguins beat out my beloved Senators in the playoffs last season, or it could be Sidney Crosby's disgusting playoff mustache. Or it could also be the fact that June is just too late to be watching hockey.

Either way, this is one sports fan who won't shed a tear if "Sid the Kid" and the Pittsburgh Penguins don't hoist the Stanley Cup this season.

Jonathan Hamelin contributes articles on the NBA, NFL, and NHL. An avid fan of the Canadian Football League, he writes two columns on the CFL, Rider Report Card and CFL Buzz.

Comments and Conversation

June 2, 2009

Steve Beecroft:

Detroit is winning 2 games to zero because they have had some very lucky bounces, a good goalie and have played successful defense. That is their style. Apply pressure and hope for garbage goals. In game two, Pittsburgh had more and better chances, but Osgood was excellent and the puck just didn’t bounce their way. If the luck factor shifts, they can be right back in this series.

As for the writer’s banal dislike of Sidney Crosby, that is just soar grapes. Is Sidney another Wayne Gretzky…no. Is he a fine player nonetheless…yes.

June 2, 2009

Jonathan:

Thanks for the comment. I agree that Detroit has had some very luck breaks in the first two games, but the important thing is they won. Detroit does play good defense but I believe that they do more than just “apply pressure and hope for garbage goals,” on offense.

As for Sidney Crosby, I believe he is a good player, as I did say in the article, but I don”t believe he should be dubbed the greatest there is, especially when Evgeni Malkin has been just as effective this season. So while I may not respect Crosby, I do respect that he is a skilled player.

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