Lethbridge takes this series. Hurricanes a fast skating team. They got what it takes to win the Memorial Cup as their whole team is just plain out good top to bottom.
I listened to Broncos post-game radio last night and the guys were pretty down on the Broncos performance. Having Gawdin and Minulin out sure doesn't help their situation so hopefully they can get them back into the line-up for Game 5. The broadcasters talked about the Team possibly being tired because of the 2 tough series they had to play against Pats and Warriors. I don't think Manny would like that take on his Team!This is so reminiscent of the Pats final series last year when Brooks was basically out and Wags & Henry played with "one wing" injured. Lots of Pats naysayers at that time said that Paddock screwed up by having no depth and giving away all the grit on the Team.No WHL Team can have depth ready to step in when arguable some of their best players are out or are playing injured. The Pats didn't last year and the Broncos don't this year. All the Coaches can do is ask the current roster to step up and hope the injury situation gets resolved in time. Unfortunately it didn't for the Pats...let's hope it does for the Broncos.But that being said we need to give credit to the Hurricanes who are taking advantage of this opportunity, and playing very well. Special Teams killed the Broncos in Game 4 so Manny has to find a way to keep his players out of the sin bin...sound familar?A pivotal Game 5 coming up and someone on the Team has to step into Gawdin's leadership role if he is not back...if not I believe the Broncos are unfortunately doomed. Let's go Broncos!!
The frustrating thing with the 'depth problem' this year is that I think the Broncos have depth but either they are not using it or depth players are not stepping up. On defence, it is impossible to completely replace arguably your best all around d-man, but it shouldn't mean that you can only roll 4 D which was one of the Bronco's biggest problems last year. Despite having played a regular shift for the last two months of regular season Alexander has rarely seen the ice this playoffs with the last 5 minutes of blow out games being the only exceptions. At forward I feel like the coaching staff have overly complicated things by completely juggling the lines. If Gawdin can't play why not just move Patterson to the first line and keep the 2nd and 3rd lines the same? The second and third line combos seemed to be working for the first two rounds. All the changes up front then likely contributed to taking a too many men on the ice penalty in the first because nobody had a clue when they were supposed to be on the ice. The Hurricanes are also out competing the Broncos in just about every phase of the game. For example, on the short handed goal the Broncos gave up in the first period Skinner stopped the initial forward with the partial break and then, with two Broncos standing in front of the net with body position on the second Cane down the ice, they still allowed him to bang in the rebound?? A very similar scenario played out on the Canes 3rd goal in game two. I think that if one team outnumbers the other team and has position on the puck there is no way the team at a disadvantage should win the battle whether fatigue is an issue or not. Finally, the reffing has been very frustrating to deal with in this series. I think that the refs have been consistent within games but from game to game the standards have varied widely. In game 2 you practically had to murder someone for the ref to even consider giving a penalty whereas in game 4 it seemed like a Bronco could just give a Canes player a dirty look and get a penalty for it. In boxing the ref visits each dressing room prefight and explains how he is going to call the fight, why can't something similar be done in hockey? Mind you, one would think that after taking their first 3 or 4 penalties the Broncos would start to figure things out.
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