Thursday, April 22, 2010

A Sedin Shows Emotion

The best thing to happen out of Game 4 was not that the Canucks managed to kill off two powerplays, but Henrik Sedin's reaction to scoring the winning goal. The playoffs do feed off emotion and when you see a reaction like that, it says something. It hopefully says Henrik has realized that to win you cannot be a milquetoast Joe Thornton and need to be a fired up Alexander Ovechkin.

After all, through four games we have Sidney Crosby with 11 points, Ovechkin with 8 points, Henrik Zetterberg with 7 points and the NHL's regular season scorer leader lies tied for 14th overall in playoff scoring.

Meaning in Game 5 and 6 it's Henrik's time to show the hockey world why he's the leading scorer in the NHL as Roberto Luongo (of the .871 save percentage through Game 4) is not exactly reminding anyone of a Patrick Roy despite a few highlight reel saves. Hey, Roberto, that glove on your left hand is for catching the puck!

Also, apparently I have heard that having a great powerplay is now so important to winning in the playoffs that it usurps how the majority of the game is played at 5-on-5. Please inform the 1 for 19 on the PP Washington Capitals that leading their series 3 games to 1 is not good enough.

I'll also call Pens Coach Dan Bylsma to tell him having the second-worst PK unit in the playoffs that the Pens are heading nowhere with their 3 games to 1 lead over the Sens.

Last I looked the game is primarily played 5-on-5 and it will still come down to that as far as winning the Cup. Sure, LA can win a series on the PP as the Dallas Stars did in upsetting the Ducks of the Mighty Anaheim in '08.

So, let's simplify, a good powerplay will win you a series if your team is lousy 5-on-5. Vancouver can survive this series even if LA's powerplay remains at this redhot .563 pace as long as the Canucks can dominate at 5-on-5.

Have a look at LA's powerplay game by game
Game 1
2 for 3 on the PP in a 3-2 OT loss

Game 2
2 for 6 on the PP in a 3-2 OT win

Game 3
3 for 3 on the PP in a 5-3 win

Game 4
2 for 4 on the PP in a 6-4 loss

Also, despite this mass panic over the number of penalties the Canucks are taking, they are taking no more than they did in the regular season where they were shorthanded an average of just under 4 per game.

So PK woes be damned. Just make sure Henrik brings it Crosby-style in Games 5 and 6.

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