Beer Leaguer’s Guide to The Cup Final
You know the storylines already, the Vegas Golden Knights, a team that didn’t exist one year ago are up against the Washington Capitals, Ovi finally gets his shot to dance with Stanley. The 2018 Stanley Cup Final has the makings for one of the most epic, insane, and memorable series in recent hockey history. To top it off, it’ll be about the hockey, not the headlines that come after the games. Here’s a Beer Leaguer’s perspective on the series, including players you should watch, and just what to expect out of Knights v Caps.
The Tendies – The weirdoes between the pipes that everyone loves.
As a goalie myself, I cannot wait for the goaltender matchup we’re getting. Marc-Andre Fleury has quite literally re-blossomed this spring, showing why Pittsburgh took him #1 overall back in 2003. His reactions are on point, he’s tracking the puck like the buddy on your squad tracks chicks in the bar, and he’s clearly having a blast playing right now. He’s going to be peppered by a deep and determined Capitals offense, so he’ll have to be on his game the entire round.
On the flip side, Braden Holtby has been having himself a heck of a playoffs after starting the first two games riding the pine. He too is playing some dominant hockey including two straight shutouts to eliminate the Eastern Conference regular season Champion, Tampa Bay Lightning. Vegas comes at you with speed and creativity, Holtby will be in store for a busy campaign as well.
The Beauties – The guys you’ll want to keep an eye on when they’re on the ice so you can show off that big ol’ brain of yours to the boys in the room.
Jonathan Marchessault. Florida screwed the pooch letting this guy get picked in the expansion draft. The speed he’s showing by absolutely FLYING by defensemen combined with his nasty shooting skills. At 27 years old, you’re going to hear his name in the dressing room for awhile.
William Karlsson. Just do me a favor, go to YouTube, check out any of his 43 goals from the regular season and get back to me after you’ve wiped the droll from your mouth.
Evgeny Kuznetsov. Ovi’s Russian bestie has always had the potential to be a super-star and even heir-apparent to Ovechkin as Big Strong Russian Goal Scoring Machine. With 24 points (11g, 13a) in the playoffs, I’d say machine run good.
Tom Wilson. Nevermind him chuckin knucks with anyone dumb enough to do so. Wilson has showed he can be a contributor on the offensive side too. One shift he’s clobbering some poor schmuck’s face in and the next he’s saucing one off to T.J. Oshie to one-time into the net.
The Prediction –
I’ve been trying to rationalize Vegas’ dominance and consistency all season but now I’m just done with it and so should you. They’re just a well-rounded unit that took on the “Golden Misfits” moniker and said “F you, we know we’re good and we’ll prove it”. They’re just so much fun to watch and they’re having fun too. And for Washington? They finally got past the Pens and their mini-curse and made the Lightning look like that one team in your league who got cocky and moved up 2 divisions. It’s going to be exciting, high intensity, and hockey at it’s finest. My prediction is that it’ll go 6 games, with the Golden Knights bringing Stanley to the desert.
What do you think? Who takes it all?