Emotion ruled Sunday’s NHL playoff games in different ways.
For the Nashville Predators, hosting Game 3 of a tied series, it was about planting a seed of frustration in the St. Louis Blues’ minds and letting it fester over three periods. Nashville made it to the second round by suffocating the Blackhawks to a mere three goals over four games. That defensive prowess showed up in a huge way in Game 3.
Even the Boston Bruins seemed more interesting of a dark horse playoff contender.
But Ottawa dispatched Boston somewhat neatly before blowing a 2-0 lead to the Rangers in the second round. After two lifeless games and with a broken Erik Karlsson, counting the Sens out was easy.
Instead, Guy Boucher’s team surprised again in Game 5 on Saturday, tying the score with 1:46 left to play and the goalie pulled. Kyle Turris ended things in overtime, and the Senators are on the verge of the conference final.
The Senators. Okay. Sure. We can get behind this. If our Super Cheap Jerseys Fans penance for underestimating Ottawa is watching them dig deeper into the playoffs with come-from-behind wins … where do we sign?
This is not where the NHL wanted Vegas to land. In a draft low on surefire elite talent, sixth is a tough place for the NHL’s latest expansion team to start. But Tippet is a fine prize, considered by many to be the best pure sniper in the class. He skates well, has a fierce shot, and reminds some of Phil Kessel.