Detroit: 3 - San Jose: 4 (Sharks Lead Series 1-0)
What a gripping game right? I mean for a while there the home side raced out to a big lead and it looked like the game was over early. Give credit to the road team though for battling back and in the end it was a tight, close affair like most of us expected it to be with the home team prevailing in the end. Overall it was a fantastic night for us San Antonio Spurs fans!
Oh... Yeah the hockey game between Detroit and San Jose was ok too I guess.
(Sorry Mavs fans, I couldn't resist the little dig.)
Anyway, while the four of us main contributors on Defending Big D were split in terms of who we thought would win this series, tonight's outcome was probably as predictable as it gets and shouldn't have surprised no one. Traditionally teams that come directly off a hard fought seventh game win in the previous series always have issues getting it back going for the first game of the next round and while that doesn't seem to be what really happened to Detroit here as they didn't show obvious signs of fatigue, you have to think mentally they made some mistakes that would have never happened had they been a bit more rested.
And while the Wings won't admit to anyone that fatigue did play a part in tonight's decision, they have to be telling themselves that now that they get a couple of days off before game two on Sunday, they'll have a chance to regain some focus and be much better the second time out and considering they did look a little better as the game wore on that kind of has to be a scary thought in the back of the Sharks minds - that they were facing what should have been a worn down Wings team and Detroit still manged to hang tough with them as the two times they were able to quickly answer San Jose goals demonstrated. It was just a case of the Red Wings not being able to climb out of a hole on this night.
As for the Sharks, this was a huge win for them and something that they can keep building confidence over. I hate to be overly dramatic but lets be real here: A loss in game one would have been devastating to San Jose and taken away any good feelings the Sharks would have had from the first round.
Also any worries there might have been about Joe Pavelski not being able to keep up his red hot play were easily taken care of. Call him "Little Joe" or "The Big Pavelski" ... either way he's for real in this year's playoff and just like San Jose had a right to be concerned with the fact that the Wings hung in with them in game one, the Wings themselves should be at least a little worried at the prospect that Joe Thornton and Dany Heatly are showing signs of coming around to playing a much better game as the playoffs continue.
It's a shame us Stars fans hate both of these teams so. I know it's going to prove to be a great series and I don't know about the rest of you but despite the fact that I'd like to see the rink swallowed up by a black hole as both San Jose and Detroit play in it, it will be hockey played by - and it so hurts me to say this, but it's true - two of the league's perennial best., and I know I'll enjoy watching every minute of it!
... Or at least when it doesn't interfere with watching the Spurs play in round two. (Again, sorry... I'll stop now I promise.)