May. 25, 2017
The NHL playoffs are Better Than The NBA Playoffs
Tonight the Stanley Cup Playoffs will feature a double header of the one the greatest things in sports, Game Seven, which means it's the perfect time for some more #PleaseLikeMySport from a bitter hockey fan.
Not really, in fact I don't know why hockey fans get so butt hurt over the fact that ESPN doesn't cover enough hockey. The NHL doesn't ESPN cause they themselves are struggling with relevancy, and even when they do decide to sit down and cover the sport, I feel like I'm being talked too like a kindergartner. Also I like that it's a niche/regional sport in America and hate that we have a load of southern teams mucking up our sport, but that's a completely different story.
But tonight will only serve as a reminder as to why the NHL's product of four seven game series over the course of two month's is superior to the NBA's.
Tonight two Game 7s will take place back-to-back when the Washington Capitals host the Pittsburgh Penguins and Anaheim Ducks host the Edmonton Oilers.
It's not just simply the fact that two do-or-die games are being played in the second round, the NBA seems to be on the tract for the same situation, it's that all four of these teams playing tonight are capable of capturing Lord Stanley's Cup.
That's simply something NBA hasn't been able to offer as the last couple years, this year in particular, the playoffs have only served as the waiting room for a Cleveland-Golden State NBA final. Cleveland and Golden State are already in the conference final and are currently waiting on their next victims to be decided.
In the NHL? The two teams waiting around for tonight's games are an 8th seed and a 6th seed (the NHL does their playoffs a little differently but for comparisons sake let's say their the same). Both the Nashville Predators and the Ottawa Senators have made unexpected runs in the playoffs and both are capable of capping it off with a championship.
8th and 6th seeds can't even get past the first round in the NBA, let alone the second. Each of the last two years seeds 1-4 on the east have all advanced past the first and the only "upset" that have come in the first round at all is the West's 5th seed has won each of the last two years. A 6th seed hasn't advanced through the first round since 2014, and only five 8 seeds have ever beaten a one seed with the latest occurring in 2012.
The constant dominance by the 1 and 2 seeds in either conference have rendered the first two rounds in the NBA pointless and recently the Eastern Conference playoffs haven't been worth watching at all.
All of six of the teams remaining in the Stanley Cup Playoffs could win it all and that sort of parity and competitiveness is not something the NBA can compete with.
However, the extreme levels of parity in the NHL has come back to bite them come June.
While it's boring to watch Cleveland and Golden State roll through their respective conferences in route to a third straight NBA final match-up, when we get their it's sure to be a riveting series between easily the two best teams in the league.
Due, to the unpredictable nature of the Stanley Cup Playoffs it's not uncommon to get a "random" Stanley Cup Final between two teams no one thought would get their, last year's final between San Jose and Pittsburgh serves as a good example. In fact, most years feature at least one team that nobody thought would be playing come June and there really hasn't been a match-up between two teams everyone thought would be there since 2013 when the Chicago Blackhawks faced the Boston Bruins.
But there is no doubt in my mind that the Stanley Cup Playoffs are clearly a superior product to the NBA playoffs as it's just not the same intensity level being brought to the table. Tonight's Game 5 between the Boston Celtics and Washington Wizards feels like a regular season game, as both teams are just battling for the right to get buried by Cleveland.
As a hockey fan, I'll be watching the double dose of Game 7s tonight instead.
Because it's the cup.