Tuesday, May 29, 2018

A look back at the classic Kings/Leafs game seven, 25 years later

The Stanley Cup final got underway last night, with the Vegas Golden Knights making their first appearance in franchise history. That’s not bad for a team that didn’t even have a roster one year ago. And it might suggest that making it all the way to the final isn’t all that big of a challenge.

As a counter-point, we have the Toronto Maple Leafs.

The Leafs, of course, haven’t been to a Cup final since 1967, a fact that serves as a source of angst for Toronto fans and a source of non-stop punchlines for just about everyone else. But while the team has occasionally been known to take a decade off every now and then, there have been times when the Leafs came close to ending their drought. And they were never closer than they were exactly a quarter-century ago.

Today marks the 25th anniversary of one of the most memorable games in modern Maple Leafs history: Game 7 of the 1993 Western Conference final against the Los Angeles Kings. The game took place on a Saturday night at Maple Leaf Gardens, and saw the Leafs face Wayne Gretzky and the Kings for the right to play the Montreal Canadiens for the Stanley Cup.

It did not go well for Toronto, with the Kings earning a 5–4 win to punch their ticket to the first final in franchise history. You knew that, of course. But to mark today’s anniversary, let’s look back at that game with 10 fun facts about that historic night. Well, “fun” here will be relative — if you’re a Maple Leafs fan, some of these memories won’t be all that much fun at all. But you’re used to that, so let’s dive in.

1. The Hockey Night in Canada broadcast started with the single greatest montage in hockey history

The pregame montage is a tricky thing. You want to get fans hyped for the game they’re about to see, but not go so far that you oversell it. You want to set a dramatic tone without drifting into the histrionic or maudlin. You want to relive all the key moments in the series so far, highlighting the main characters and unresolved storylines. You want, if at all possible, to use the theme music from the move Hoosiers.

Some montages work, some don’t. The one that ran in the moments before Game 7 was a masterpiece of the genre. So before we get into what happened that night, let’s set the stage:

OK, I’m ready to start flipping over cars. Let’s get to the game. (Spoiler alert: This is about where the good news ends for Leafs fans.)

>> Read the full post at Sportsnet

1 comment:

  1. Always appreciate a video that demonstrates how bad Ontario teams are/watching Ontario teams lose. That's really the only consolation with Canada bringing a Cup home. The West Coast will take it before the Leafs.