2013 Stanley Cup Finals Preview
As the 2013 NHL season comes to a close, only two teams are left standing: The Chicago Blackhawks and the Boston Bruins. These two teams have never faced each other in the Stanley Cup Finals, despite being two of the oldest teams in the NHL. Both the Blackhawks and the Bruins are deemed a part of the “Original Six,” the first six franchises in the league. These six teams (Detroit Red Wings, Chicago Blackhawks, New York Rangers, Montreal Canadiens, Boston Bruins and Toronto Maple Leafs) are known league-wide for their rich history dating back to the early 1920s when the NHL was born. Since then, the league has expanded to 30 teams that can be found in cities across the United States and Canada.
This Stanley Cup Finals is especially interesting because two teams from the historic Original Six have not met in the Finals since 1979 when the Montreal Canadiens trounced the New York Rangers in five games.
The Blackhawks, this year’s President’s Trophy winners, have absolutely dominated all 48 games of the shortened 2013 season (a result of disputes between the NHL Players Association and franchise owners). Led by Patrick Kane, Jonathan Toews and Marian Hossa, the Hawks look to finish off their incredible season with company from Lord Stanley.
But first they have to get past the hard-hitting, defensive-minded Bruins. Ignited by the “Boston Strong” attitude that swept the country following the tragedy of the Boston Bombings, the Bruins have ruled the postseason. After just barely making it out of the first round of the playoffs by rallying from three goals down to score an improbable overtime goal in Game 7, the Bruins have just one combined loss from their series’ versus the Rangers and the Penguins. David Krejci and Milan Lucic were mainly responsible for the Bruins’ four-game sweep of Pittsburgh in the Eastern Conference Finals.
Both teams are similarly matched in physicality and athleticism, which can only result in an extremely entertaining final series in this year’s Stanley Cup Playoffs. Will the Blackhawks’ incredible speed and offense be enough to tear past the famed Bruins’ defense? Or will the Bruins continue to steamroll their opponents with their defensive brutality on the ice? Only time will tell which team will be able to hoist the legendary Lord Stanley for the final victory skate of the 2013 NHL Season.