Playoff hockey’s the absolute best. It’s a whole other level of one of the best sports in the world. The Boston Bruins and the Columbus Blue Jackets have had fantastic playoff runs so far and just ended a six game, second round series that saw the B’s move on to the Eastern Conference Finals. This series was great to watch with games with a ton of hard hits, some fantastic plays and stellar goaltending. Inches of the puck bouncing the way it did lead to crazy games. Highlights came from both team in every facet of the game each night.
I was a bit torn on my rooting interests for this series. Obviously, I had several futures on the Bruins who were one of the most consistent hockey teams I bet all season and postseason. But as a Sabres fan I absolutely hate the B’s. And it’s tough to root against the Jackets, a team that’s at the farthest point in their franchise history with two incredible players that are probably going to be finding new homes this postseason. Sergei Bobrovsky stood on his head all playoffs and Artemi Panarin is a joy to watch every time the puck is on his stick. But clearly in my head, my gambling brain beat my fan brain, so in this series I was rooting for the B’s.
Tonight’s game 6 was a great game. Columbus just couldn’t get a break, hitting a ton of posts in this game, and the Bruins were able to find a way to bury 3 on Bob. With a little luck, Tuukka Rask proved again how good he is in the playoffs and the Bruins capped the series off with a 3-0 win.
The big play of the game everyone was talking about tonight was Charlie McAvoy’s dirty hit on Josh Anderson. He got a two minute penalty on it but a lot of people were saying it should’ve been more. I thought he definitely deserved a major there cause it’s a scumbag move, but a suspension would’ve probably been a bit much.
Even after the bad blood coming from that hit, the NHL once again proved why it is by far the best league in professional sports with a tradition that’s timeless every year. The handshake line. At the end of each series, both teams line up, shake hands and that ends the season for one of those teams until someone lifts the Stanley Cup. In tonight’s handshake line Josh Anderson and Charlie McAvoy shook hands like true competitors and moved on. That’s what hockey’s all about and to quote Doc Emrick “I sure love this sport.”