Talk about justice, or karma! The Boston Bruins won Game 7 of the 2011 Stanley Cup Finals against the Vancouver Canucks in all the ways the Canucks had beaten them in Vancouver in three previous games. You can get the stats and game highlights elsewhere. I’ve got the karmic analysis here… just the way Vancouverites like to think about the universe.
Despite the series being tied three games apiece after six games, the Canucks hardly deserved to be in that spot. They had led for less than 33 minutes after six games, and had been outscored almost 2.5 to 1 due to three bad losses in Boston. The Canucks also had one dirty hit and lots of dirty dives, both more than Boston. Vancouver’s only saving grace to keep them in the series were two marginal shutouts and an overtime win on home ice, where one bounce of the puck in each game could literally have changed the outcome. Luck was the only thing keeping the Canucks in the series, essentially, and you knew that had to run out sooner or later.
Well, it ran out tonight… and in style, too, as Boston beat Vancouver in all the ways Vancouver had saved their asses thus far. In the bubbly New Age West Coast city that believes in stuff like karma, karma really got them tonight as karma got restored to its proper balance.
First, Vancouver got beat by a fair goal as Patrice Bergeron fired a shot high off the left post from in front of goalie Roberto Luongo. Vancouver had been beaten fair and square in this series in Boston, and played pretty evenly in Vancouver.
Second, Vancouver got beat by a wrap around goal by Halifax native Brad Marchand (where I’m from). Recall Boston got beat by a wrap around goal just 11 seconds into Game 2 overtime in Vancouver to go down two games to nil. Brad Marchand also got a second goal that was an empty netter with just over 2 minutes to go. Note the numerology alignment with the “2″ appearing throughout this sequence. The Cup’s coming to Halifax this summer!!!
Third, Vancouver got beat by a bad bounce off the glass at centre ice that gave Patrice Bergeron a short-handed breakaway and goal. Vancouver is only alive for Game 7 from good bounces they’ve had in Vancouver to get the goals they had gotten so far. Well, one finally went for Boston, and the Bruins have capitalized well on their opportunities.
Fourth, Vancouver’s power play also went relatively silent in the Finals, whereas Boston’s came alive relative to how dismal it had been up to the Finals. To hammer home the point to its conclusion, Boston finished by scoring a short-handed goal on Vancouver’s power play.
Fifth, there’s Boston shutting out the Canucks. It’s only one shut out compared to the two times Vancouver had shut them out on the same ice in this series. However, I think the Boston fans and players will all tell you this shut out was worth far more than two in terms of karma.
Sixth, after Boston’s epic 3-0 lead collapse against the Flyers last year, the Bruins can forget all that with the 2-0 games down comeback to win it all on road ice this year… where they had not won in the first three games but came through when they needed to in the fourth. As for Vancouver, anyone making the argument after six games that they were able to get it done when it counted, to justify them still being alive in the Finals, you can feed that argument to the Orcas.
Seventh, congratulations to Bruins goalie Tim Thomas for winning the Conn Smythe trophy as the playoffs most valuable player. There was no doubt he was the MVP and key to Boston having won the Stanley Cup in 2011. I’m sure he can tell you a few karmic stories of his own, like getting his job back after losing it last year to Tuukka Rask! I’m betting he’ll also win the Vezina Trophy for Best Goalie soon, becoming the first goalie since Bernie Parent to win the Stanley Cup, Conn Smythe Trophy and Vezina Trophy in the same year.
Eighth, Andrew Ference had also lost in a Game 7 while with the Calgary Flames so he got his due. Mark Recchi, who probably played his last NHL game tonight, upped his finals record to 3 Cups and 1 loss. Congratulations on a great career and going out on top!
Ninth, by winning in Vancouver, the Rogers Arena re-balanced the hockey karma for Canada by being a scene of heartbreak for most Canadians after having been the scene of Olympic hockey glory just over a year ago.
Tenth, Vancouver goalie Roberto Luongo, who played for Team Canada in that epic Olympic gold medal hockey win in 2010, also got his karma rebalanced by going through the same glory and heartbreak as the crowd at Rogers Arena.
Eleventh, Cam Neely, who had been traded away from Vancouver to Boston before he embarked on the Hall of Fame phase of his career, came back as President of the Boston Bruins to get his justice against the old team that had not believed in him. It took Cam a while, but he did it.
Twelfth, the Boston Bruins were due among the Boston major sports teams to win a title, and they got it. The Patriots, Celtics and even cursed Red Sox had all won recently. The Bruins hadn’t won in 39 years.
Vancouverites, you believe so much in karma, and often get flack it by being called New Age or flaky. Well, nobody’s going to be calling you any of that stuff now after what happened tonight. You were right. Karma does exist, and one has to believe in karma after Game 7 the way all the karmic lopsidedness got straightened out!
Well, not quite. I’m not sure what’s keeping that Stanley Cup away from Canadian teams all these years. You could make the argument we’ve won so many of the early ones it’s only karma that American teams are winning it so often today, but it’s been a rough drought of 19 years now. Count it as the bad thirteenth factor, I guess.
To conclude, I would just like to ask the Vancouverites to please not whine on and on and on and on and on about this one. You’ve got nothing to whine about. The Canucks got beat fair and square any way you measure it except for the luck factor that disguised how badly they had been outplayed in this series.
Oh, and don’t trash your beautiful city either. Damn, too late.
p.s. Real classy of you to boo Gary Bettman and chant “Bettman sucks!” to take out your disappointment on someone else.