Well, it is just 2-days until Game 1 of the 2008 Stanley Cup Finals between the Eastern Conference Champion Pittsburgh Penguins and the Western Conference Champion Detroit Red WIngs. Sorry for the dearth of reporting on my part, as I have been on business travel all week. This should be an interesting series between two teams that have rolled through their respective conferences with world class goaltending, potent offense and a stingey defense. Having only met twice in the pre-season this year, these teams don’t have a lot of first hand knowledge of each other and there has been no opportunity for the teams to breed any contempt for one another. But I don’t expect that will translate into an emotion-less series. Quite the contrary, this is the Stanley Cup finals! Both teams have battled long and hard to get here and they will be putting it all on the line to take home the Stanley Cup.
The Penguins (12-2) will have the challenge of playing the first two games on the road in Joe Louis Arena, with the first coming on Saturday night. The challenge for the Red WIngs (12-4) will be to not let the young Penguins team steal one at the Joe, while the Penguins must (in my opinion) win at least one of the first two at the Joe to prevent the Wings from getting too much momentum. Both teams have gotten to this point with excellent play and a lot of the same strengths, and it will be a tough series to call. I will be providing a series preview on Friday after I return from Florida with comparative stats and my best guess at how the series may play out. Be sure to check back on Friday night!