Today I experienced the delight ususally reserved for watching Duke basketball lose to North Carolina. The Rangers were out-gunned, out-hit and out-hustled for all but about 3 minutes of today’s Game 5, and they got bounced by the Penguins. It’s becoming increasingly easy to cheer for the Penguins, as they generate excitement rather than controversy. Who wants to hear about Jagr’s future in the NHL, Gomez’s monster contract that took the Rangers no further than he took the Devils, Sean Avery’s spleen venting, or listen to the Rangers whine about penalties? Another trade deadline deal – the one that brought Hossa from Atlanta to Pittsburgh – looks briliant, as Hossa gets the game and series-winning goal. Shades of Patrik Elias with that one. The Monday morning question is just how much the New York media will pick this series apart, looking to lay blame in which the guy supposedly in his career twilight (Jagr) outshone the recent imports (Gomez and Drury) when it counted.
I’m cheering for the Penguins in the Battle of Pennsylvania, and they could take either Dallas or Detroit.