Friday, May 17, 2013

The "other" Cup

The Memorial Cup (CHL)
The 2013 Memorial Cup gets underway Friday evening in Saskatoon when the host Saskatoon Blades take on the OHL champion London Knights. It will be the battle of New York Ranger prospects as the Rangers will be represented by Shane McColgan (2011 5th) and Josh Nicholls (UFA) of the host Saskatoon Blades and Tommy Hughes (UFA) of the London Knights. Wish I could say you can catch it live in the USA but for some reason the "home of hockey", the NHL Network won't be showing the games live this year (but they will offer next day replays).

This year's 4 team round robin tournament this year will feature 7 prospects expected to go in the first round of the 2013 NHL Entry Draft. Seth Jones (Portland Winterhawks), Nathan MacKinnon, Jonathan Druin and Zach Fucale (Halifax Mooseheads), Max Domi, Nikita Zadorov,and Bo-Horvat (London Knights) all represent a wealth talent that have turned this year's event into a wide open affair.

The matchup on Saturday night between the Portland Winterhawks of the WHL and the Halifax Mooseheads of the QMJHL should be the best matchup of the opening round with the 4 expected first round draft picks facing each other. Don't be surprised if 17 year old goalie Zach Fucale of Halifax steals the show as he has gone an impressive 16-1 2.02 GAA and a 0.918 save percentage during the QMJHL playoffs.

I am going to send folks to the good folks of the Buzzing The Net blog for previews of each team with Portland, Halifax,London, and the hosts the Saskatoon Blades.

Ranger Thoughts

Yes the Rangers lost game one to the Bruins 1-0 in overtime but why are people acting like this was the end of the series? Really the Bruins won on a mistake by the Rangers not that they were able to score on Henrik Lundqvist during the previous 75:40 that was played. Take away that mistake and the Rangers are still in the game.

Sure it would have been nice to steal game one but the pressure is more on Boston who werethisclose to losing their opening round series with Toronto. The Rangers are playing with house money right now so I still think that this series is more than winnable thanks to Henrik's track record against the Bruins.

All it takes is winning one game in Boston to steal the home ice advantage away from the Bruins so let the team go for it on Sunday after getting some badly needed rest.

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