The most Holy Grail of trophy’s……. The Stanley Cup

The Stanley cup is the trophy that is awarded to the last team standing and the winner of the Hockey playoffs. Unless you have played the game, you have no real idea how hard this trophy is to win and it is the hardest trophy to win of all the sports trophies out there. To win this trophy you literally leave everything out there on the ice throughout the entire playoffs.

Hockey is more of a blue collar sport, only because you show up at the rink ready to get down and dirty and work very hard at not just standing up on skates, but stick handling drills, passing drills, shooting drills and turning on a dime while skating full speed and handling the puck drills. Those that have played the game know that there is a lot more than these basic skills I mentioned, there is also the game inside the game, not to mention to a first time watcher, the game seems pretty fast and violent. The violent part is really not that violent, it is only one player checking another player, to get the leverage on him in order to take the puck away from him, A hockey player should also be good at geometry, as it is a game of angles and having good puck sense to be at the right spot at the right time. In order to take the puck away from the opposing player, you have to anticipate where that player is going and take away his angle to make a play and then be at that spot at the right time. Those that grew up during the days of the great Bobby Orr, would see exactly what I am talking about, just that he was so good, he made it look very easy.

A Hockey season may not be as long as a Baseball season, but if it was you would have more players being lost from a team for extended periods, because of the physicality part of the game. Hockey is also a true “Team” sport, you very seldom see just one player carry a team for any length of time, with that said….. when you build a championship team, you don’t just build a team full of talented players, you need team chemistry which will help you build an identity for the team. The Boston Bruins had this chemistry and identity in 2011, to which they won the holy grail of trophies, being Lord Stanley s cup. Now the playoffs in hockey are like no other playoffs in sports, they are basically a whole different season within the season, you have the top eight teams from each conference and whoever the last two teams left are, would make the finals their fourth round of four out of seven games to win each round. there is a total of twenty eight games in the playoffs if a team plays all four rounds to a game seven, with the magic number being sixteen “mission sixteen”, meaning it takes sixteen wins to win this most prestigious trophy. During these playoffs it takes grit and determination by each player of each team, you also have a lot of banged up players, the deeper they go into the playoffs, which makes a hockey player one of the toughest athletes to play any sport.

The Stanley cup is won from literally a lot of blood, sweat and tears, not to mention some broken bones, stitches and a few surgeries later. That hard rubber puck will leave a mark, from a shot traveling over one hundred miles an hour and especially if it hits you in the right place, just imagine being a goalie without the right equipment and having to stop one of those shots? I played goalie and you still feel the impact, even with the right equipment. I have heard some sports Individuals say that, all sports need to let the players have their day with the their respective trophy they have won, like hockey players do? What I say to that is, the trophy you see the players with is not the true Stanley cup, as the true Stanley cup always stays in a glass case within the Hockey hall of fame, in Toronto, Canada. Those three rings you see below the cup itself, has all the players names engraved into it, that have won this prestigious trophy and when one ring gets full, then it is taken out and replaced with another to fill up, you can see all the rings including the real trophy at the hall of fame, but if you are a true hockey player, you never want to touch it, unless you have earned the right to touch it, by making it through “mission sixteen”. Those that watch the hockey playoffs and see the conference champions surround their conference trophy they just won without touching that trophy reason is, because they don’t want to jinx their chance they just earned, so they can compete for the most prestigious of all trophies in sports……….. The Stanley cup.

” Hockey is a blue collar sport, only because be prepared to bring your lunch pail to work, just as the blue collar workers do and work their butts off to achieve success”

” Lord Stanley cup is the most prestigious of trophies, because it is the hardest to win of any sport”

” not every hockey player gets a chance to compete for the Stanley cup, which makes it the Holy Grail of all trophies”

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Inside the Boston Briuns, the true perspective…….

The problems of Boston Bruins this season of 2014/2015, simply go deeper than just trading a player for another player, just cause you think it may shake up the team?

What your average fan and most sports media so called know it all’s tend to forget is, there is a lot more to a hockey team than the production of a player. Team chemistry and that special bond between the players goes without saying, other than the Edmonton Oilers of the early 1980’s, which had a team of superstars and just pick a guy including number 99 Wayne Gretzky, you can make a case that this was the best team ever put together in the history of the NHL. Teams like that today will never exist again, reason being is free agency and the salary cap of each team, plus the fact that their team chemistry wasn’t needed as their talent outweighed it by a landslide.

Team chemistry was what the 2004 Red Sox was all about, they weren’t the most talented team but they played for each other and pulled together when they needed to the most, Guys like Kevin Millar (cowboy up), Jonny Damon to name a few and the nick name they gave each other (the idiots), goes to show the team chemistry this team had and what made them a special team, to end the Red Sox drought after 86 years and win the World Series.

This Boston Bruins team had this team chemistry in 2011 and won Lord Stanley cup, they still have the core players that fit the team chemistry, just that they let go three main guys that were part of their core and more importantly helped give this team an identity, of being hard to play against and being a “TEAM” on and off the iced. A good team with chemistry is like being a family and battling for each other every chance a situation arose, these three guys are Jonny Boychuk, Andrew Ference and Shaun Thorton, these are the guys that were part of the core and brought an identity to the team.

When you are missing your identity and struggling in the way you play as a team, the management has to be careful how they fix this and not trade the wrong guy and get back a guy that makes the situation worse, if you give me 20 Patrice Bergeron’s, I will show you a championship every year, this will never happen and you need to be very careful on how you add and subtract players, as this will affect the team for a very long time, until you get back the team chemistry and find the team identity once again.

Now with that said, Brad Marchand and his reputation is hurting this team more than it is helping, granted he has skill, but the reputation is out weighing the talent 2 to 1 right now, if you could pick up a player like Oshie of the ST. Louis Blues, for Marchand and throw in Jordon Caron to sweeten the pot, I would go for that trade all day any day, Oshie has good hands and would be a good fit for these Boston Bruins, put Oshie on the first line, bring Paille to the second line and bring up spooner to play for the big club on the fourth line. This gives you more speed, more craftiness (which leads to goals) toughness to dig the puck out of the corners to the front of the net, which will lead to more scoring, but what it gives you the most is, better team chemistry and even greater, a team identity that you are missing now. When you have a good core of player’s, that have a great team chemistry and a solid identity, plus a great coach with a winning system, now you have a championship team, which the Bruins had in 2011 and can get this back, with some little tweaking and not selling the farm to the highest bidder.

” Boston Bruins still have a good core of players, they just need a little tweaking to regain the chemistry and find their identity once again”

” The chemistry and identity out weigh talent on any team sport, without them you will never win a championship”