Okay, Black and Gold Nation we’ve mourned long enough. This season (as we all know and have talked about ad nauseam – me included) didn’t work out as planned. But you know what? It’s time to turn those frowns upside down and enjoy some of the best hockey that’s being played on planet Earth. Let’s enjoy our spring, shall we? Grab an adult beverage of your choice, hook up the TV outside on the porch or on the back deck and get ready to jump on a bandwagon.
Are you ready to love again? Care to meet the team of your (temporary) dreams?
Let’s get into it.
Ladies and Gentlemen, let’s meet the contenders for your (short-term) playoff love.
Your Candidates (in alphabetical order)
The Carolina Hurricanes (CAR):
- They play a great team game and rarely make unforced turnovers.
- Absolute monsters on the fore-check and very good with possession starting at the dot.
- Players I like: Jordan Martinook, Brent Burns, Derek Stepan, Jacob Slavin, Paul Stastny and the only Staal worth a fart, Jordan.
- Their coach is the biggest whiny twat in the league. He’s the Karen of the NHL
“I’d like to speak to your manager” Brind’Amour (probably)
- They are the former Hartford Whalers and the Storm Surge.. really? This is still a thing?
- They retired Glen (Triple OT) Wesley’s number
- Players I don’t like: Sebastian Aho, Jesper Fast, Jesperi Kotkaniemi, Martin Necas, Ryan Suzuki and Jesse Puljujarvi
The Dallas Stars (DAL):
- Very fast team that will play physical. The team is a good mix of thumpers and stars.
- The goaltending is next level with Jake Oettinger
- HC Pete DeBoer is great at the pressers and at getting the most out of his players.
- Players I like: Jamie Benn, Mason Marchment, Joe Pavelski, Tyler Seguin, Miro Heiskanen, Colin Miller and Roope Hintz (also the previously mentioned Otter).
- I still remember the old DAL team with Steve Ott and Sean Avery (look for Tim Thomas enjoying the fights at the end of the B’s bench.)
- Texas sucks in general (sorry @lacesoutfinkle87), you live in a 3rd world country.
- There’s just no emotion in it for me with this team. I don’t really like them and I don’t hate them either. They’re just meh
- Players I don’t like: Ryan Suter, Nils Lundvkist, Jason Robertson, Evgenii Dadanov, Joe Pavelske (that’s right, he’s on my players I like and don’t like list) and one of the most over-rated players in the NHL Max Domi
The Florida Panthers (FLA)
- This may be the best collection of pricks and mutants in modern NHL history
- The play like a pack of hyenas chasing an injured gazelle with their heavy fore-check and the way they muck it up at every opportunity.
- Another coach who gets the best out of his players and has had some good chirps. Paul Maurice mic’ed up is gold, he talks to his players like I talk to the TV.
- They brought back the rats from way back in 1996
- Players I like: Sam Bennett, Anthony Duclair, Brandon Montour, Radko Gudas, Aaron Ekblad and the Rat King of South Florida, Matthew Tkachuk. Honestly, I could have listed another 7-8 guys on this side of the ledger.
- This team will face off against CAR with their gigantic D-men which may limit their effectiveness on the fore-check.
- It’s Florida, which is America’s toilet (except The Keys, that part is a gift from heaven)
- Will their magic run out? Will Bobrovsky go from Bob to Boob at a crucial point?
- Players I don’t like: Patric Hornqvist, Eric Staal, and Marc Staal. That’s it, I really do like this squad.
The Vegas Golden Knights (VGK)
- They got a helluva coach in Bruce Cassidy. Butchie is the first coach in NHL history to notch 50 wins in consecutive seasons with 2 different franchises.
- Can you imagine what a gong show a Stanley Cup Finals game would be in that barn? This is their opener vs. Winnipeg in the first round.
- They have the best defensive group left in the playoffs
- Players I like: Jack Eichel, Mark Stone, Chandler Stephenson, Shea Theodore, Alex Pietrangelo and William Karlsson (and Phil “The Thrill” Kessel isn’t even dressing!)
- Can you trust unproven or (possibly) backsliding goaltending through the Finals? With Laurent Broissoit out, they’ve gone with Adin Hill backed up by Jonathan Quick.
- There’s a lot of belief out there that the Golden Knights haven’t “earned” their success. Could the Hockey Gods be angered by this? Not really a con, just wanted to put it out there.
- Players I don’t like: Jonathan Marchessault, Nicolas Roy, Brayden McNabb – this was a stretch as the only reason I don’t like these guys is that they can be pricks out there, but I’d take them all on Team Brownie.
So there you have it. Nicely laid out for you to make your bandwagon decision. For me it’s between the Vegas Golden Knights and the Florida Panthers and I think that would make for a hell of a Final. If it gets to that, you heard it here first – Panthers in Six.
You can read more about Brownie in his bio down below or follow him on Twitter @Abrow28
I compare the Panthers to the Blues team that out muscled and out played the B’s a couple of years ago. I agree with Gretsky Brian made this team a winner !