Monday, April 25, 2011

How to overcome and blow a 3-0 series deficit in the NHL playoffs

Just twice in NHL history had a team lost the first three games of a playoff series and managed to win the next four.  Then, last year, the Boston Bruins went up 3-0 on the Philadelphia Flyers, but dropped the next four and Philly became the third team to pull off the unlikely feat.  Now, one year later, the Vancouver Canucks have gone up 3-0 on the Chicago Blackhawks, but three straight wins by Chicago have that series heading back to Vancouver for a Game 7.  So how does a team come back from such a massive deficit?  Well, take a look:

How to overcome a 3-0 deficit: Get a player back in your lineup that scored 15 goals in the regular season and rally around him as he turns himself into a hero.
How to blow a 3-0 lead: Have a player who has scored 14 goals during the regular season become a goon and randomly start to distribute dirty hits after being suspended to have the opposing team rally around him and turning him into a hero.

Overcome: Remind your goalie that Chelsea Dagger only plays when the home team scores...effective Game 4.
Blow: Remind your goalie that even though Chelsea Dagger is about to play for the 8th time that night as the home team wins Game 4, 7-2, it's only one game.

Overcome: Kindly remind the opposing team that even though you are the 8th seed, their season has ended two straight years at your hands.
Blow: Confuse two of your star forwards as each other, and watch as they become invisible offensively.

Overcome: Place a picture of a taxi driver in the back of the net and hope Patrick Kane can take off its head.
Blow: Place a picture of a taxi driver in the back of your own net.

Overcome: Request that Stephane Auger be a referee for Game 7.
Blow: Double-shift Alexandre Burrows for Game 7 with Auger as the referee.

Overcome: Don't take any stupid penalties that could result in momentum changes and/or suspensions.
Blow: Double-shift Raffi Torres.

Blow: Trip Michael Frolik on a breakaway in order to make Cory Schneider do his Rick DiPietro impression, forcing Roberto Luongo into a game...a close game.
Overcome: Shoot the puck.  One (or five) are bound to go in.

Overcome: Tell Marian Hossa that it's not actually the playoffs.
Blow: Tell Roberto Luongo that it is the playoffs.

Overcome: Have role players chip in offensively (translated: Ben Smith is Luongo's worst nightmare).
Blow: Have a 41-goal scorer replace Manny Malhotra's role.

Overcome: Remind Duncan Keith that he's still better than Brett Lebda and that he is allowed to score.
Blow: Allow Sami Salo to be hit.  Anywhere.

Overcome: Swap Antti Niemi and Corey Crawford and watch as Niemi secretly helps the Blackhawks get back in the series and Crawford allow 3 goals on 4 shots to Los Angeles.
Blow: Pretend that you start each game automatically losing by 5 goals, or in some cases, you won't have to pretend for long.

Overcome: Win Game 7.
Blow: Lose Game 7.