I have been waiting since the start of the playoffs for a truly impressive effort by the Bruins and this one finally qualifies. The Bruins scored twice in just over a minute and never looked back. The Flyers, who desperately needed this win, were never in it.
I would usually never dream of calling this a series before the fat lady sang, but this one is over. After what happened last year there is no way the Bruins are going to lose this series. The Flyers may take one or maybe even two games before they head for the golf course, but they will not win this series.
It amazes me how the playoffs in the eastern conference have progressed thus far. To be perfectly honest, I don't think either the Caps or the Flyers deserved to pass the first round--at least not in any normal season. The Caps fortunes rested too much on Ovechkin. Shut him down and they are just a good team. They also didn't have the goaltending for the long haul, which seems to be a theme this year.
The Flyers have looked completely outclassed in the second round, making one wonder how they ever got past the first. I think it says more about how unready Buffalo was for the playoffs than how good the Flyers are. The Flyers too lack the goaltending to go any further.
It's possible that when this is all over the marquee match-up in the east will be seen as the Bruins and Canadiens. On the other hand, watching the way the Lightening utterly dominated the Caps makes me think that Tampa may be the real deal. With a conference final between the Bruins and the Lightening all but assured, I am already looking forward with great anticipation to the start of the series. Is Tampa as good as they appear to be? Or did weak opponents make them look better than they are? And will the Bruins--having met their stated goal for the season of reaching the conference final--just resign themselves to the golf course once again?