(Host) The Boston Bruins set a Stanley Cup Finals record last night. Now their next goal is winning the Stanley Cup itself.
The Bruins scored four goals in the first five minutes in the first period of Game 6 against the Vancouver Canucks Monday night. That was a Finals record, and the first three strikes chased starting goaltender Roberto Luongo, in an eventual 5-2 Bruins win that sets up a deciding winner take all Game 7 in Vancouver Wednesday night for the right to claim hockey’s greatest prize.
Brad Marchand started the scoring brigade for Boston. Milan Lucic followed just 35 seconds later, and after defenseman Andrew Ference scored on a slap-shot from the point, Luongo got the hook in favor of former Boston College goalie Corey Schneider, who actually played very well in Luongo’s absence but couldn’t prevent a fourth goal by Michael Ryder, and a third period strike by David Krejci on a Boston two-man advantage.
The Bruins have never led in games in these Finals, but now they’re in such a position that their first lead of the series will also clinch it, and would bring the franchise its sixth Stanley Cup – its first since 1972.
It’s something a lot of Vermonters are hoping will happen, and not necessarily because they are Bruins fans. Stand-out Bruins goalie Tim Thomas played his college hockey at the University of Vermont. One of his teammates then was forward Martin St. Louis, who won a Stanley Cup with the Tampa Bay Lightning in 2004, and then paid a visit with the trophy to UVM.
Should the Bruins prevail tomorrow night, Catamount officials like Chris McCabe of the athletic department hope Thomas will also drop by with the Cup, but no celebrations are planned at this time, because – like many folks in hockey – they are a bit superstitious and don’t want to jinx it:
(McCabe) "We’ve been in this position fortunately before with John LeClaire and Martin St. Louis and Eric Perrin and Patrick Sharp – to have alums who’ve gotten to the top of their profession and won a Stanley Cup. We’re pulling for Tim, and win or lose it’s just a tremendous amount of pride to see Tim do so well this year."
(Host) Every member of the championship team gets 24 hours to go where they want with Lord Stanley’s Cup, and UVM officials are quick to point out that Tim Thomas has some family members who are from Vermont, and even have a camp in the Green Mountain State.
Other sports were played last night, too. The New York Yankees failed to complete a four-game sweep of the Cleveland Indians, losing 1-0. Derek Jeter singled in the game to move within six hits of 3,000 for his career, but later left the game with an undisclosed injury. Yankees fans will be watching that situation closely. The New York Mets fell to the Pittsburgh Pirates 3-1, and tonight the Boston Red Sox open a series against the Rays in Tampa Bay.