Sleepy eyes woke up this morning in Anaheim with unfinished business on the brain.
Last night’s 3-2 loss to the Los Angeles Kings could not have gone more wrong for the Anaheim Ducks, and from the looks of the amount of orange in the line at the local Dairy Queen post-game, ice cream was the immediate sorrow-drowning weapon of choice.
Death by ice cream is fine for one night, Ducks fans, but jumping off the train after an unlucky first-game loss is not necessary quite yet. Stanley Cup playoff rounds are best-of-sevens for a good reason. If one win was all it took to win the Stanley Cup, it wouldn’t be the hardest trophy to win in all of sports.
And how the tides can change on the road to that trophy. Still drowning those sorrows in buckets of calories? Let me introduce you to a few playoff teams.
The 2013 Chicago Blackhawks know a thing or two about being down to rivals on home ice. The team went down 3-1 games in last year’s playoff series against the Detroit Red Wings, only to come back and win the series in overtime of Game 7. The Blackhawks also went on to win the Stanley Cup — minor details.
And just yesterday, the Boston Bruins proved that a first-game loss on home ice is practically irrelevant as the team scored three unanswered goals in the third period to tie their series between the Montreal Canadiens.
Critics (most of who clearly favor the Kings) will throw out generalizations and statistics about how teams losing the first game of a series don’t succeed; just remember, while there is a statistic for everything that has happened in the past, luckily not a single one exists for what may happen in the future.
So while Sunday might be a bit more of a celebration for Kings fans, have no fear, Ducks fans — your team are the comeback kids of the season for a very good reason, and the battle for Southern California is just starting.
Getting off to a great start is fun and all, but the team that progresses to the Western Conference Final is the team that finishes on a winning note — and if there is one thing the Ducks know how to do right, it’s how to pull of a spectacular finish.