Now that every team has played a game in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, it reinforces the adage that home ice advantage isn’t for Game One of the series, it is for Game Seven.
Eight games in and the count is three, count it, three home teams held serve in the opening game. It’s not a matter of the pressure getting to them, that may be a small part of it, it boils down to the teams being so close that home ice could have been decided differently had there have been three more games, or even three less games on the schedule.
Which gets us to the Canucks and why you shouldn’t be so put out that they lost their opener, Vancouver was not alone. Vancouver wasn’t out played; they lost in the last minute of their opener due to fixable errors. The key for the Canucks and all other teams that lost Game One is to insure that these mistakes do not repeat themselves.
Pressure in a series is an easy equation. Each game played multiplies the pressure. We are now in Game Two, therefore there is twice the pressure on Vancouver and Calgary for that matter in this one tonight. A Calgary win puts Vancouver into a tough spot…a Canuck victory takes momentum that the Flames picked up in the opener and puts it squarely back onto the team wearing red and white.
We can once again make the statement that there is no greater drama in sports than the opening round of the NHL Playoffs. With the games being so tight and the drama amplified on a shift by shift basis, it is exciting that we are just two nights into what will surely become another memorable Stanley Cup Playoff…