April 22, 2010
Miro the Hero; B's Lead Series 3-1
I am still in shock from the show the B's put on last night. In a good way. After a painful first half of the game, the B's rallied in the 3rd to tie it up to send the game into 2 OT. The Sabres came out hard from the start of the game, and scored a goal within the first 3 minutes. Woops. Then again in the 2nd period. It wasn't until the 3rd period that the Black & Gold started moving their legs. Better late than never, right?
During the overtime period(s), the Garden was ROCKING. At least I think it was. Everything felt like a dream to me. There was this looming cloud over my head the entire time that wouldn't evaporate until Satan scored the game winner. Every time the puck would cross the blue line into the B's zone, I would twist and mangle my rally towel because I was sure that the Sabres would get a lucky bounce, and break my heart. Throughout the game, we kept thinking...the B's can do this- IF this happens, or IF that happens; IF they do this; IF they can do that. They answered all our "ifs". And they answered them with confidence.
Tuukka was nothing short of brilliant. Which doesn't even come to a surprise to me at this point. So resilient; so calm. Although, he did made an epic, diving, mid air save- a la Timmy, to rob Grier. This whole series I have been torn between who has got the better goaltender. I've got to hand it to Miller- he makes it VERY difficult for anyone to score. He makes timely saves and makes it seem like the B's don't stand a chance. Even after being momentarily crippled by a Lucic shot, he continued to make save after save. The goaltending in these series is downright breathtaking- as I have been literally holding my breath. But...what Tuukka has that Miller doesn't, is his calm and cool demeanor. Tuukka is so poised and almost always in position; at least last night he was. He's always ready. He let in two goals; and then turns into the Great Wall..of..Finland. Miller on the other hand, although having his moments of resilience, does get rattled. He was out of position during that penalty, when the B's won the game; and Satan knew it.
Last night was amazing. It showed those who had lost hope that the B's CAN and WILL do what it takes to win. They haven't scored first in this entire series- but with a young, relaxed goaltender; worried, yet redeeming defenseman (And a 6'9 monster wearing a cage), mismatched lines of hungry forwards, and maybe a hint of luck; the B's are now one win away from receiving a ticket to round 2 of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.