Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Tilted Ice; Hawks and Flyers go up 2-0

I thought that the fever I had over the weekend skewed what I saw from Game 1 of the Sharks and Hawks series. Though I knew I couldn't fully grasp what went on during the game, I did not feel like the Sharks played well enough to win from about the 2nd period mark until the end of the game and also thought they had difficulties containing the Blackhawks. I chose not to write about it after I saw the shot count and just thought maybe Niemi just stole Game 1 for the Hawks.

After watching Chicago win their 7th straight road playoff game last night, I don't think I was as delusional as I thought - I saw a lot of parallels in games one and two. The Sharks had difficulties executing on offense and containing the Chicago defense. There were many instances when the Sharks would either fumble pucks on received passes or just miss the net on scoring opportunities. The Blackhawks' defense, in my opinion, has been absolutely superb in this series - particularly in Game 2. They continue to activate in transition and are talented enough to get back into position on failed rushes up the ice.

One thing is for sure, the Sharks are in big trouble. With Nabby's confidence to be seemingly decreasing and with the series heading to Chicago, Game 3 appears to be a must win situation for the Sharks. Having two days off in between games should certainly help the Sharks refocus and watch some video but the pressure is definitely building.

I guess San Jose is not in as bad of shape as Montreal - the Canadiens haven't even scored a goal in their series against the dominant Flyers. Fever or not, I was not delusional when watching the 6-0 thumping on Sunday evening. The Flyers continued their success last night, shutting out the Canadiens for the second straight game. As that changes venue to Montreal, there are now question marks in goal for the Habs as Jacque Martin may turn to Carey Price to replace Halak as the starter for Game 3.

Game 3 for the Eastern Conference Finals is Thursday while the Western Conference Finals resume on Friday

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