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All is Right in the Hockey World, The Montreal Canadiens Failed to Win the Stanley Cup

It was a cute story, the Montreal Canadiens had an improbable run to the Stanley Cup Finals. Their magical playoff run came to an end on Wednesday night after the Tampa Bay Lightning won their second straight Stanley Cup.

With the Canadiens loss on Wednesday night, all was right in the hockey world. The New York Yankees of the NHL, the hated archrivals of the Boston Bruins, the Canadiens failed to win the Stanley Cup.

Montreal was looking to secure their 25th Stanley Cup championship. It was their first finals appearance in 28 years. During their playoff run, the Canadiens displayed a never say die attitude. That was evident when they came roaring back from a 3-1 series deficit to the Maple Leafs in the first round.

Carey Price was phenomenal between the pipes but it wasn’t enough. Youngsters Nick Suzuki and Cole Caufield dazzled on the ice, but it wasn’t enough.

The Montreal Canadiens have a bright future ahead of them but for a second straight year, Tampa Bay reigns supreme over the NHL.

The Canadiens Lost, Rejoice!

Image Courtesy of the Globe and Mail

For Boston Bruins fans, the Canadiens losing is right on par with seeing the Yankees lose. You never want to root for your rivals and it’s completely sacrilegious for Bruins fans wanting too see their rivals win.

Too be honest, I personally love the fact that Canadiens fans are taking the preverbal L as well. The pretentious fan base likes to remind hockey fans how much their team has won. They’re brash, cocky and rude which can be said for Yankees fans as well.

The Les Habitants have a prestigious history as one of the original six teams.  They have banners that hang from their rafters in which the organization and fans are proud of. Let’s be honest, the majority of those wins came during a time when the league was smaller.

The Canadiens losing and watching their fan base unravel is amazing theater. Unfortunately when the time clock struck 0:00 their magical season was over.

Fans of other sports teams love a great underdog story. The Montreal Canadiens were just that an amazing underdog story. But I personally struggle to root for a team whose fan base called 911 on Zdeno Chara after his hit on Max Pacioretty.

The Lightning Are Hated Too

Image courtesy of the Tampa Bay Times

I also understand that the Lightning organization is not filled with choir boys. This organization which has had a winning culture with some of the league’s best players. In addition, hockey purist’s struggle rooting for a warm weather climate team.

The Lightning was in the news all season long for their use of LTIR or long-term injured reserve.

Fans and media have been critical of Tampa Bay and have stated the Lightning “circumvented” the salary cap to acquire additional players for the season and playoffs. This was to do with top player Nikita Kucherov who had hip surgery prior to the regular season.

Kucherov missed the regular season and was placed on LTIR. When a player is on LTIR, they do not count against the salary cap. Once the NHL postseason begins, there is no salary cap. Kucherov who carried a $9.5 million cap hit was placed on LTIR, the Lightning had some money too spend.

Once the playoffs started, the Lightning had those players and Kucherov because the salary cap is not recognized. Fans and the media covered the story and voiced their displeasure.

Having said all of that, the Lightning were within the rules of the NHL and people need to stop complaining. Tampa Bay played by the rules and they won. It was such a New England Patriots-Bill Belichick type move, winning franchises use the rules too their advantage.

I personally will refuse to listen to the $18 million over the cap crying that has been done by fans. Tampa Bay played by the rules and they have another championship to show for it.

No Storybook Ending

Image courtesy of the NHL

It’s sad that the hockey gods weren’t on the side of the Canadiens.

The Montreal Canadiens lost and Prince Charming will not be there to place his lips on Lord Stanley’s cup. Cinderella wasn’t able to put on her glass slipper, I could go on and on with the cliché lines.

Passionate Canadiens fans like Nicholas Parsons will unfortunately have to wait until next year to see his beloved team get another chance.

Parsons was interviewed in the Montreal Gazette and the 18-year-old spoke about his fandom. “Everywhere I go near Brampton, I wear my hat, and people roll down the windows in their cars and scream, “Habs suck!”, said Parsons.

Sorry, dude but the Habs do suck, but that’s my Bruins fandom oozing out of pores that’s saying that. Also, I’m very aware that fans will say that the Bruins were bounced in the playoffs and yada yada. That’s fine, the Bruins lost but the Canadiens losing in the Finals makes it so much better. It’s the tonic to my gin or the ying to my yang.

Conclusion

Prior to the city of Boston just dominating the sports landscape, the old saying used to be “wait until next year’. While Boston will have to wait until next year, so do those Les Habitants fans as well.

Enjoy watching the Tampa Bay area hoist another Stanley Cup into the air. Hopefully this time if Tom Brady is there celebrating with the Tampa Bay fans, he doesn’t try and toss the Stanley Cup into the water.

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– Chris Henrique (@ChrisHenrique on Twitter)

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