One thing is for sure, when you step onto the ice in the NHL playoffs...it's going to get rough. Fighting and scrapping is a huge part of hockey, that's just the way it is. Whether a player fights to gain momentum after a goal or to avenge an earlier hit, the enforcers on a team sometimes put forth as much effort as the guys scoring the goals. That's all well and good for the regular season, but this is the playoffs. It's a different world.
What I really can't stand is when the fighting gets out of hand. I'm not talking about punching another guy's teeth out, I mean when fights break out because a team's pissed off that they're losing. The fans paid for a hockey game not a barroom brawl over someone's girl. Come on.
Now I don't want to point fingers, but it seems as though wherever the Bruins go, trouble is right behind them. It looks like every time Chara climbs over the boards onto the ice he has to prove that he's two feet taller than everyone else. No one cares about who you hit, in the playoffs people remember who scored the game-winning goal.
Sure the Bruins are up 3-0 so far this round, but early on against Buffalo when it looked like they weren't going to make it, Boston would get into shoving matches at every turn. Frustration totally got the better of them, and it's ruining the playoffs.
Another example is Montreal and Pittsburgh. Just because Crosby is amazing at what he does and is a great leader to the Penguins, doesn't mean that every time the dust settles after a scrum he's lying on the ice without his helmet.
Grow up. He's better than you. Let it go. The Canadiens are acting like a bunch of jealous little kids.
And who do the Flyers think they are? The "bad boys" from back in the day? That was when having a reputation of being tough meant something. It meant teams were afraid to step into the Philly arena because they knew they were about to get their asses handed to them. This year's Flyers are not even close to that. So stop trying to bring back the old nickname of the Broad Street Bullies and maybe focus on a new one: the Broad Street About to Get Swept Guys.
When a stoppage in play happens, the teams should not be focusing on who's standing next to their goalie, but rather on what's showing on the scoreboard. If your team isn't the one with more goals, stop messing around. Play hockey. That's the way you win the cup.
It's definitely not a fact that a non-fighting team will go far in the playoffs, but there has to be a certain focus in the postseason. Once the frustration sets in, nothing can go well. Shoving leads to penalties, which lead to power plays for the opposition and, eventually, losses. Keep your cool and make the other guys be the ones to start something up.
What it comes down to is this: Boston, one of the teams leading 3-0 right now, has 135 penalty minutes so far in the playoffs. San Jose, the other team up 3-0, has 70. Granted the Bruins have been killing all those penalties exceptionally well until now, but why give the other guys the chance? Let them win on their own efforts, don't just hand it to them. Stop shoving and start scoring.