Time to end it (Courtesy: ruthsartsandletters.wordpress.com)

The Time Has Come...

Nobody said this was going to be an easy series. Tonight is the final chapter of Flyers-Sabres 2011. Who wants it more?

After Game 5’s loss, I was depressed. I couldn’t believe that the comeback had fallen short. I wasn’t too optimistic going into Game 6. For the first 30 minutes, things didn’t look good and I was pissed. most of my anger was aimed at Peter Laviolette. As we fell behind 3-1, I was making a list in my head of the things he’s handled poorly in this series, and during the regular seasons.

  • Michael Leighton: Why the hell is he even dressed for a game, let alone starting.  He’s played one regular season game, and he looked like shit.  When he came in relief of Boucher, he left juicy rebounds all over the place. No wonder he got torched easily and had to be pulled. Nearly every save he makes results in second chances for Buffalo. We don’t need that shit!
  • Bobrovsky: What did he do to deserve getting sent up to the skybox. He had a crappy game and was nearly forgotten. I know Lavy flip-flopped goalies during Carolina’s run a few years ago, but you can’t do everything the exact same way every time. This isn’t the best way to show a young goalie that you trust him.
  • The powerplay: how can you not design a system that works when you have this much talent on ice.  Try something new if your original plan isn’t working. It took a skills competition for us to find out that JVR has a cannon and should be firing shots from the point. Maybe if we’d worked on this since training camp he’d be more comfortable in this role.
  • Chris Pronger: Overall, I think it was pointless for him to play if he can’t play like himself. But one thing stood out to me that I loved, and that was his slashing penalty. Big Tyler Myers has been using his size, and learning how to play with a bit of a mean streak. We haven’t really pushed back. Until he decided to mess with Prongs. The hard chop to the legs let him know to watch out, because we will strike back.

But then the tide turned and we flexed our muscle.  When Ville Leino banged the puck home in OT, it restored my hope.  We are a superior team, that controls the flow of every game, but has faced some adversity. Ryan Miller has been great at times, but he hasn’t been invincible.

So once again, our back are against the wall. This time, so are theirs. This isn’t a moment for motivational speeches, or video’s to hype us up. This a time that we sit back, and hope that our team comes through, and extends the season into the next round. Every game has come down to the wire. Of course, there’s no way the hockey gods let either team run away with this one.  No. Tonight, it will be back and forth, with the Sabres pushing up more than we’ve seen. Everyoen with a rooting interest in this game will have knots in their stomachs, and pain in their chest. Throats will go hoarse. And in the end, somebody will go to bed happy, and somebody will have a summer full of “what if’s. Hopefully, it’s those bastards from Sabre Noise that start looking forward to next season.

Thanks for reading!

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Tags: Brian Boucher Buffalo Sabres Carolina Hurricanes Chris Pronger Eastern Conference Quarter Finals Game 5 Game 6 Game 7 Michael Leighton Peter Laviolette Philadelphia Flyers Ryan Miller Sergei Bobrovsky Tyler Myers Ville Leino

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