There are lots of things that I love about playoff hockey.
And although I’m a little disappointed with all the nasty play and dirty hits and the lack of respect that some players *coughraffitorres* have shown for their fellow players, there is something about this time of year that makes my heart just fill up with joy and excitement.
I love that I acutally have the opportunity to watch teams that I otherwise never get to see. Like the Nashville Predators, for instance.
For years, I’ve been indifferent to them. I didn’t hate them, nor did I love them. They were just there. Existing in a Western Conference world that I just never visited.
I respect Barry Trotz and his loyalty immensely. I give props to the organization being patient and slowly building an organization and a team that can compete with the big dogs of the NHL. I makes me happy to see that the fans in Nashville have embraced this team and the sport of hockey.
The Preds have made the playoffs 7 out of their 13 years of exsitance and last year, they even won their 1st ever playoffs series, defeating the Anaheim Ducks in the first round. Also that season, they had 16 regular season sell-outs and 6 sell-outs during the playoffs.
Well played, Music City.
Well, last night, I had the chance to watch the Preds take on the Wings in game 3 of their series. Although the Preds are seeded #4 to the Wings’ #5, you know this is going to be a tough series, but I’m really liking the Preds chances in this one.
Pekka Rinne is a freak of nature a la Zdeno Chara and should not be as atlethic and quick as he is.
He is 6’5″! He’s a goalie! It boggles the mind.
Martin Erat is playing well. Paul Gaustad and David Legwand are well over 50% in face-off wins. Shea Weber and Ryan Suter are doing a great job of shutting down Zetterberg, Datsyuk and all the other offensive talent that the Wings have. They are arguably one of the best defensive pairings in the NHL. (Chara & Seidenberg are the best. Sorry, I’m biased)
They have some great young players, especially Gabriel Bourque, who scored this beaut last night.
KNEE DROP. SNIPE.
It also helps that the Predators have two Boston University Terriers on their roster – Brandon Yip and Foxy Friday honoree, Colin Wilson. As a tried and true Terrier, my blood runs scarlet and white and seeing two very talented former college players from my alma mater get the chance to play in the NHL makes me appreciate this team even more.
So for the remainder of their playoff run, I’ll be rooting for the blue and gold, much to Gator’s dismay. She’s already mad at me because of the Bruins/Caps series and now this one, too.
What can I say? I’m digging the Predators.
Perhaps I’ll have to invest in NHL Center Ice next year, after all….