Heading into his third consecutive elimination game of the Stanley Cup finals, Peter DeBoer said the pressure prior to Game 6 is no different than before.
“I think it’s the same feeling as when we were down 3-0,” he said after New Jersey’s pregame skate. “Like I said, I think the hockey world pretty much wrote us off, and I think we feel we’ve played with no pressure because of that.
“I don’t think that’s changed because all of a sudden it’s 3-2 now.”
DeBoer’s right in saying the hockey world wrote the Devils off…but to be fair, the hockey world was right to do it. Nobody expected this to get to Game 6 , and that isn’t a surprise — New Jersey is just the third club to win two straight after falling behind 0-3 in the Stanley Cup finals, and the first to do it since 1945.
(In ’45, Toronto led Detroit 3-0 before the Wings rallied to win three straight — only to lose Game 7. In 1942, Detroit led three games to none before Toronto ripped off four straight wins, for the first and only 0-3 comeback in Cup finals history.)
That said, the Devils keep insisting this isn’t about making history, but rather winning the Stanley Cup. The Kings, too, also aren’t interested in making history.
“Game 4 was a new situations for fans and a lot of players,” L.A. captain Dustin Brown said. “We have a lot more calmness about us today.
“I feel tonight’s the night for our team.”
Following his stunning 41-game suspension, it looks like Raffi Torres has at least one former teammate in his corner.
We haven’t yet seen how the San Jose Sharks or the NHLPA are reacting to the league’s hammer-dropping decision to punish Torres for his Torres-like hit on Jakob Silfverberg, but Jason Demers decided to put in a good word for Torres tonight.
It was a simple message: “#FreeTorres.”
Demers, now of the Dallas Stars, was once with Torres and the Sharks. (In case this post’s main image didn’t make that clear enough already.)
Perhaps this will become “a thing” at some point.
So far, it seems like it’s instead “a thing (that people are making fun of).”
… You get the idea.
The bottom line is that there are some who either a) blindly support Torres because they’re Sharks fans or b) simply think that the punishment was excessive.
The most important statement came from the Department of Player Safety, though.
Those who feel as though the Boston Bruins may rebound – John Tortorella, maybe? – likely rest some of their optimism on the back of a healthy Zdeno Chara.
It’s possible that he’s merely limping into what may otherwise be a healthy 2015-16 season, but it’s definitely looking like a slow start thanks to a lower-body injury.
The latest sign of a bumpy beginning came on Monday, as several onlookers (including CSNNE.com’s Joe Haggerty) pointed out that Chara was listed on injured reserve.
As Haggerty notes, that move is retroactive to Sept. 24, so his status really just opens up options for the Bruins.
Still … it’s a little unsettling, isn’t it?
The Bruins likely realize that they need to transition away from their generational behemoth, but last season provided a stark suggestion that may not be ready yet. Trading Dougie Hamilton and losing Dennis Seidenberg to injury only make them more dependent on the towering 38-year-old.
This isn’t really something to panic about, yet it might leave a few extra seats open on the Bruins’ bandwagon.