Official Don Cherry Division Round 1 Results: Buffalo Sabres vs Hamilton Tiger Cubs

Discussion in 'All Time Draft' started by Nalyd Psycho, Nov 30, 2006.

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  1. Nalyd Psycho

    Nalyd Psycho Registered User

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    Game 1: You have to feel somewhat sorry for Georges Vezina, he's never had to face anything like Bobby Hull. And, it really shows in game 1. Lemaire and Savard try to contain him, but they can't stop him. Hull scores two unanswered goals in the first period. Lionel Conacher takes a beating blocking two Boom Boom one timers, but the defender never lets it get him down. Perrault opens the scoring in the second period off the give and go with Martin to fool McCrimmon. Cyclone Taylor answers with an unassisted end to end rush. For the rest of the game Conacher takes the game to Apps and Gardiner shuts the door. Boucher springs Roy Conacher who scores an empty net goal with 25 seconds to go.

    Hamilton Tiger Cubs win 4-1

    Game 2: In game two Lemaire tries something different and puts Taylor and McCrimmon against the Million Dollar Line. Taylor's speed and stickwork proves more effective then trying to take the fight to the juggernaut Hull. Unfortunatly for Buffalo, the creativity of the Bentley brothers makes mincemeat of Housley's defensive game, leading to a tic-tac-toe goal by Wharram. As the second period starts, the way Lindsay looks at his teammates makes clear he's given them an earful, and he shows it on the ice, powering past Gilbert and Howe he sets up Apps in the slot who passes back to Lindsay with a wide open net, tying the game up. One the next face off, Savard wins back to Pronger who sends a pinpoint rocket pass to Joliat giving him a one on one against Vasko, unable to get by him he back passes to Savard who dekes out Stapleton, passes back to Joliat for the quick wrist shot in. Lemaire then locks it down to hold the lead, but Hull gets the puck when Taylor's not near him, Hull goes behind the net to pick up steam and by the time Taylor catches up to him, Hull is a full blown freight train, big slap shot, off the post, but before Vezina can take a sigh of relief, Bill Hay hammers in the rebound. To try and reclaim the lead, the Sabres throw everything they can at Gardiner but nothing gets by him. With the Broten line out against the Perrault line, Housley fakes a slap shot and passes to Langenbrunner who one times it past Gardiner for the game winner.

    Buffalo Sabres win 3-2

    Game 3: Continuing on a similar plan, Lemaire focuses on using speed against the Tiger Cubs. This leads to an early goal by Joliat. But works against them when Max Bentley uses their momentum against them while stickhandling. If it wasn't for a timely block by Serge Savard, Doug Bentley would have scored. Vezina keeps it tight until midway through the second when Hull gets off a Mark Howe set-up one timer that dents the back crossbar. Causing a delay as the officials swap nets. Hamilton can't get another before Apps sets up Lindsay in close. The strong defensive play of Pronger and Savard keeps the Bentleys off the board and luck keeps Hull off the board. With under a minute to go the Nouveau French Connection with Hull almost scores, but Pronger turns it around by sending off Jacques Lemaire on an open net breakaway.

    Buffalo Sabres win 3-1

    Game 4: The speed of Buffalo keeps them with the edge, but Gardiner keeps it close, letting in only a Geoffrion slapshot. Early in the third, Hull ties it up. The game starts to get rough as Pronger and Balfour drop the gloves. As the intensity of the game rises, Lindsay gets more and more comfortable. He powers past Stapleton, fakes the past to Geoffrion and then roofs the back hand over an outstretched Gardiner.

    Buffalo Sabres win 2-1

    Game 5: Gorman switches up his lines by constantly rotating his right wingers. Using speed to shut down Hull was less effective when he could work a give and go with Rod Gilbert. Murray Balfour's strength and intensity created space for the Bentley's to work their magic. Despite the Sabres' strategy being tossed up in the air, only Gilbert managed a goal. What really through the Sabres is when Gorman waited for the Sabres to change and adapt, and then reverted to the original chemistry driven lines. The Sabres floundered and only Apps managed a goal.

    Hamilton Tiger Cubs win 3-1

    Game 6: Hot on the tails of their game 5 victory, Hamilton was playing with fire, hitting everything that moved. Fights broke out between Vasko and Lindsay as well as McCrimmon and Litzenberger. Lindsay was fast becoming the only scoring liner comfortable out there for the Sabres, but his passing plays with Apps led to two goals. Not enough to counter goals by Boucher, Hull and Martin though.

    Hamilton Tiger Cubs win 3-2

    Game 7: The Sabres revert to a full on Jacques Lemaire trap to smother the offensive depth of the Tiger Cubs. The trap is effective as the Tiger Cubs can't score. But, Conacher, Howe, Vasko and Gardiner makes easy work of the restrained offence of the Sabres. First period. No score. Second period. No score. Third period. NO SCORE! This one's going to overtime. No one is giving an inch, two overtime periods pass, it's the third overtime period. Bobby Hull takes the puck in the neutral zone, carries it back into his own zone, Cyclone chases after him, but a passive pick by Hay throws him off. Hull gets a full head of steam as he races of the left side. Fearless, Vezina comes out to cut down the angle. Big slapshot! Hit's Vezina right in the stomach! Vezina is winded and dissoriented, Balfour and Hull race for the rebound, but McCrimmon gets it first. McCrimmon to Taylor, dekes out Hay, passes to Lindsay, Lindsay fights off Vasko, passes to Apps, Apps to Geoffrion, one timer... STOPPED BY GARDINER! Rebound...Apps...SCORES!

    Buffalo Sabres win 1-0 in OT.

    Three Stars:
    3rd Star: Ted Lindsay
    2nd Star: Syl Apps
    1st Star: Bobby Hull

    The Buffalo Sabres beat the Hamilton Tiger Cubs 4 games to 3.
     
  2. pitseleh

    pitseleh Registered User

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    I just wanted to say thanks for doing these huge writeups. It must have taken a lot of work, and it's appreciated :)
     
  3. God Bless Canada

    God Bless Canada Registered User

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    I think this was definitely the toughest series to predict. I think Hamilton would have beaten at least two of the teams that won their first round series. But that's the reality of such a tough conference.

    Personally, I would have had a much higher-scoring series. Hamilton can trot out four strong scoring lines, and they have a good offensive presence from their blue-line. Buffalo has three strong scoring lines and an even more impressive offensive presence from the blue line. Buffalo's goaltending might be the worst in the draft, or the second worst. I know you love Gardiner, but I think he's somewhere around 15-18 for No. 1 goalies in this draft, and I'm not sold on Hamilton's back-up and No. 3.

    I thought it was a croc that Hamilton was fifth in the division, since they likely have the most potent offence in the draft, and with all of their chemistry (two-thirds of the Pony Line, three members of the Million Dollar Line, two-thirds of the French Connection with a perfect substitute in Gilbert) it would have given them a major head start on the competition. (And I'm talking a 10-point lead at the first quarter).

    Anyways, congrats to Buffalo on winning. The match-up with New Jersey should be an intriguing one. Buffalo's a very up-tempo team with a lot of gunners, but a weak goaltender. New Jersey is a strong, two-way team with an ultra-steady defence and a top-notch goaltender.
     
  4. Evil Speaker

    Evil Speaker Registered

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    Hamilton's fate is quite upsetting. 5th in the division and a 1st round exit with that kind of team? :shakehead . If I was in your position i'd hesitate to come back for the next draft.
     
  5. Frightened Inmate #2

    Frightened Inmate #2 Registered User

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    I know it probably means nothing now but really having a team like finish 5th is a shame - to have them finish fifth and first round exits is just plain silly. There were some weaknesses but it was still a much better team than the results would show in my opinion.
     
  6. pitseleh

    pitseleh Registered User

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    It was rather unfortunate how the Don Cherry division ended up so stacked. I think every team in that division would have pushed for first or second in any other division.
     
  7. God Bless Canada

    God Bless Canada Registered User

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    I said when the conferences were announced that it was a stacked division. But I think if you come up with any division format, you're going to have at least one stacked division. We could draw names out of a hat, but that's way to random. We knew that a damn good team wasn't going to make it out of the first round.

    I don't know who voted for Hamilton to be fifth, but I think they need to do a little research. And I think they need to realize that there's a difference between success in the regular season and success in the playoffs. Hamilton had a team that would dominate our regular season. Their chemistry would be a huge advantage over every other team. The problem with chemistry is eventually the other teams would catch up over the course of the season. It's not as big of an advantage in the playoffs.
     
  8. Nalyd Psycho

    Nalyd Psycho Registered User

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    Part of the problem is about 3/4 of my hockey watching life is the dead puck era, so, to me, a team getting 4 goals in a game is high scoring. Plus there's the theory, which I believe, that as the talent rise, scoring decreases, it's talent disparity that leads to high scores. I just struggle to see these teams giving up alot of goals.
     
  9. Hockey Outsider

    Hockey Outsider Registered User

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    First, thanks to Nalyd for all the great series recaps. They must have been fun to write. He's going way above and beyond what any GM could ask for in a moderator.

    Congrats to Reckoning. It says a lot about a team and its character when it can beat such a tough opponent in nail-bitter series. Your top line frightens me.

    As others have said, it's a shame to see such a good team lose in the first round. I think the Tiger Cubs would have made the top three in any other division. A team with such skilled forwards and dependable shut-down defensemen deserved a better fate.
     
  10. pappyline

    pappyline Registered User

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    Reckoning,

    Congrats on the win & good luck in future rounds.
     
  11. reckoning

    reckoning Registered User

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    Thanks a lot for all the game-by-game writeups on all the games in all the divisions Nalyd. Outstanding job!

    I`m guessing that the fact it was so close likely means there was only a one vote difference. I honestly thought Hamilton would win.
     
  12. pappyline

    pappyline Registered User

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    Thanks for the support from you & several others which tells me it must have been a really close vote based on the positive comments many made about my team. However, the majority have spoken.

    Yeh, I would be hesitant to come back for the next draft. I really would not have picked much differently if I had to do it over again & this is the type of team I would compile in any future drafts. So maybe it is time to take a break.
     
  13. Murphy

    Murphy Registered User

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    I'd have to think this is the series upset to date. I had Hamilton taking it but going seven games. The Buffalo team was no slouch and that first line was scary. No disrespect to Bill Hay and Murray Balfour but that may have been the weakness. Hamilton had incredible depth thoughout the lineup and I thought that would be what would take them to victory but the first line could have been a little better in my opinion. It just seemed to me that the first line with the greatest LW ever could have been a little better had Murray been able to snag a Sid Abel or Andy Bathgate type to play with Hull.

    I can't emphasize enough how impressed I am with how Murray put together a team with that kind of depth. He consistantly pulls out gems in the later rounds. I've learned more about the older guys than anyone watching Murray in action and I'd be more than disappointed not to see him in the next draft.
     
  14. reckoning

    reckoning Registered User

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    Murray: when the next draft takes place, I hope you decide to participate in it again. Drafting your teams the way you want them and seeing how others do the same with their teams is the whole point. This vote afterwards is pretty much just a popularity contest. The draft itself is the main course.
     
  15. God Bless Canada

    God Bless Canada Registered User

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    I'll join the list of those who wants murray back for the next draft. On the one hand, if he's not back, it'll greatly improve my chances of getting the Bentleys and the Conachers, and getting Brewer back. But this draft is only as good as the GMs involved, and murray's one of the best.
     
  16. Nalyd Psycho

    Nalyd Psycho Registered User

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    Agreed. We need more people with murray's knowledge and love of the history of hockey. Not less.
     

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