Ducks win! Ducks win! Ducks eliminate Oilers in Game 7!
What beautiful words for a die hard Ducks fan since 1993. Congratulations to the Anaheim Ducks for finally being able to punch through the Game 7 demons! Now, before I continue, I would like to congratulate the Edmonton Oilers for an amazing season. You needn’t be ashamed of the incredible season you put together, and how you managed to surprise the entire hockey community. Going from 29th place in the entire league in 2016 to a game 7 second round elimination should be something any team should be proud of. You have made a statement and it’s loud and clear: You’re gonna be here for a while. Your time is coming very soon.
For the 5th year in a row, the Ducks were faced with a game 7 game on home ice. It’s very hard to forget about our previous failures and the “curse” that somehow was put upon us. The Ducks had failed to win the previous 4 game 7s starting since the 2013 season when we lost to the Detroit Red Wings 3-2. Then in the next 2014 season, we were completely dominated by the LA Kings in game 7 losing 6-2. The following season was the most heartbreaking one of all, reaching the Western Conference Finals and losing to the Chicago BlackHawks 5-3. Last but not least, 2016 when we completely dominated the Predators in game 7, but were met with an absolute wall in Rinne. We were eliminated in the first round that year.
The things to keep in mind is that, during this span of 5 years, the Ducks had won the Pacific Division Title every single year, including this year. Another noteworthy piece of information is that the Ducks had failed to gain any type of lead in any game 7 until we went up one goal with Ritchie’s beautiful 7 hole snipe during the 3rd period against the Oilers last night.
Many Duck fans contribute the Ducks’ curse to Bruce Boudreau who came on to relieve Randy Carlyle during the 2011-2012 season. BB (as he’s often called) instantly made the Ducks a playoff caliber team, leading them to the teams’ second Pacific Division Championship the following season. In my personal opinion, BB is an amazing regular season coach, but when it comes to clutch situations and making improv moves behind the bench, he has repeatedly failed and has been out coached in the playoffs during his entire career.
BB was relieved of his duties as the Ducks’ head coach after the 2015-2016 season following a very disappointing first round exit in the playoffs. After last nights’ win, many fans (including myself) are now sure that whatever curse the Ducks may have had very well may have left with BB and is now the Minnesota Wild’s problem. Who got the shoulder tap to try and help the franchise make a push for their second cup? The same gentleman that helped the Ducks earn their first one: Randy Carlyle.
Well, this post was intended to express how happy I am as a lifelong Ducks fan, and the weight and burden that has been lifted off of my team to win a game 7. Sorry for the history lesson, but I thought it was important to share some of that information for some context.
Next up: Predators (and it’s time for some payback..)