SJS vs PIT
No telling how much T-Bay’s conference final loss was due to Ben Bishop’s early exit because of injury. Vasilevskiy played very well as his replacement and cannot be faulted for his contributions, but the team probably didn’t have the same level of confidence playing in front of him as they would have with Bishop between the pipes. Too bad for Tampa: key injuries happening (again) at the most crucial time.
Going forward, the cup final features two teams that are best typified as being ‘offense first’. And that probably means whichever team plays the best defensively should win!:) D men Dumoulin and Lovejoy and to a lesser extent Shultz, Cole and Maata have all played very well, picking up minutes after Daley’s injury and when Letang was suspended or was sitting in the penalty box. And enough cannot be said about how Matt Murray has thrilled everyone with his goal tending. But I think San Jose has the edge in this series with the D corps that they have. Martin, Vlasic, and Polak are all stalwart veteran defencemen that are for the most part unflappable. Braun and Dillon have been solid. And then there is Brent Burns – Mr game changer. The Sharks defense can turn on a dime and add another offensive dimension in a way that Pittsburgh’s can’t, outside of Letang.
The only question is basically whether or not Matt Murray can steal the Stanley Cup himself. Don’t think so.
Gonna be fast. Gonna be fun. Gonna be Sharks in 6.