Are the Canucks peaking too early, or are they just going to steamroll their way through the final 12 games? The next 6 games are on the road, so we'll see what they are made of. I think the teams' expectation is to keep winning and catch the Flames, but I'm a little wary of that.
It's a game of emotion and momentum. You want to go into the playoffs on a high. I don't think it's realistic that they continue at this torrid pace over the next 12 games. If they do then I'll be damned, and the media will finally call them contenders and not dark horses. I think it's more realistic to say or think that they slow down a bit on this road trip and then crank it up in their final 6 games, where they play 4 games at home. That's just me.
But that's a double-edged sword. You don't want to develop a slump or losing mentality late in the season either.
Hey, I'm just speaking my mind. If you look at the Bruins, who have hauled ass all season long until March, where they have lost 6 of 9 games, the Sharks, who have lost 5 of 9 in March or the Canadiens, who have lost 6 of 8 in March, you have to wonder about this kind of thing. Even the best teams slump. Timing of slumps can be crucial.
Or is it? Let's see...
-Last season, Detroit won 14 of their last 16 games of the season before entering the playoffs. The Penguins won 11 of their last 17 games.
-In 2006-07, the Ducks won 11 of their last 18 games before heading into the playoffs and winning the Cup. The Senators won 10 of their last 15 games.
-In 2005-06 the Hurricanes won 7 of their final 14 games before the playoffs started. Not so impressive. Cam Ward replaced Martin Gerber somewhere early in that playoff run and backstopped the Canes to a Cup victory. The runner-up Oilers won 7 of their last 12 games before the season ended.
Is there a solid theory in all this? Not really. Anything can happen when the playoffs start, but it doesn't hurt to hit game 1 of the playoffs while already on a roll.
Opinions? Discuss. I'm all ears.