Flyers goalie, that is. For a kid who was unconscious against the Habs, Leighton sure came crashing back to earth in the Finals. Ouch. Jeff Carter too....put the "over" in over-rated during this series.
Anyone else notice how Madden seems to have the same calming effect on the Hawks that Pronger (allegedly) does on the Flyers - yet does so without all the jackassery and megalomania? And, oh by the way, remind me again which of them has won more Cups? Bottom line: Pronger takes care of number one. (Whether his wife likes it or not.) That's his prerogative of course. But can we please stop the canonization now?
Good series for the NHL too. Two big markets, two gritty teams, Milbury didn't even have any reason to pull a Eurotrash comment out of his ass.
For all the comments about the 09-10 Hawks being the next incarnation of 83-84 Oilers, forget it. Salary cap, people! Scotty Bowman's smug, crooked little grin as he was raising a Cup he barely had a hand in - yet managed to squeeze his butt through the bench door to make sure he was in the spotlight to celebrate ("where have you gone, Dale Tallon? Hawks nation turns a lonely eye to you....woo woo woo...") - seemed to being saying "enjoy this while you can, son. For tomorrow's quite another day indeed."
And so it likely shall be for the Cap-strapped Hawks. Pocklington may not have had the dough available to keep the band together in Edmonton forever (either that or he had a clinically inappropriate affinity for Jimmy Carson) but the point is that, if he had, he could have kept the band together. Not so, Stan Bowman.
So, I hope the Hawks and their fans enjoy this. They certainly deserve it. Chicago is too important a market for the NHL to have been an after thought for as long as they were. Old man gets out of the canoe, son steps in and breathes new life into the organization, league rewards them with a Cup. It ain't a fairy tale, but it's as close as we can get in the sports world.
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My thanks to KiPA for keeping HTP going this season. Without getting into the (boring) whys, I just didn't have it in me for much of the season. Kevin kept the blog alive with his spot on reporting and sharp writing. I owe ya, Kev. Big.