Edmonton 4 (OT) Carolina 3
What joy. Now I know why death row inmates always appeal the crap out of their death penalties, as with death comes great fear, like the fear of being trapped at in a bar with or so 10 pals, forced to watch that Hate Wizard Rod Brind'Amour lift the Cup while I'm doing my best not to cry. Nope, we're gonna save that for another night, or dream of dreams, possibly never.
First things first, Gary Bettman, you league-ruining failure: why the hell is Mick McGoo reffing the Finals? Oh wait, that's right -- the dude calls everything he sees, and even more so are the penalties that he makes up just for yuks, so he gets rewarded in the New NHL of course. Matt Greene's penalty? I'm still scratching my head. Steve Staios, in the final moments of the most important game of the year, with Cory Stillman tucking his stick under his arm? Debatable. What about that Stoll phantom hook (if a one second tap is a hook) off the draw? There were some BS Hurricane calls too, along with the inevitable make-up calls, calls just for the fun of it, and calls to keep things "spicy" because our braindead Commissioner and his owner pals equate endless powerplays with "more scoring" and "a new NHL." Truth is, and I'm sure most Canes fans would agree, real fans of the NHL -- you know, the ones that spend money on puckhats and the like -- don't want endless powerplays in place of old fashioned uptempo 5 on 5 hockey. Obstruction rules are fine, but with all of these 200 lb players falling down, get some refs that call what they actually see instead of what they think happened and we'll all be happy. That and call coincidental diving minors for once, you schmucks.
But yes, I was talking about the sweet victory. I remember thinking in the third, "I wonder why Carolina never gets in trouble having only forwards on the Powerplay" and got the unexpected answer 16 seconds in Overtime. That and even one powerplay goal can make all of the difference we've been missing in this round of the playoffs (Hemsky cut to the net for once!) while Markkanen pulled out another serviceable game with some often accidental big stops. The team still needed lots of luck, but the Oilers game looked better this time at least, and like inmates condemned to abject hockey death, we fans get to live for another game. Huzzah!