Tampa rode a winning wave, now they the bad guy
The Lightning’s three straight Finals and two Stanley Cups should always be considered a dynasty, but after losing to the Colorado Avalanche, Tampa Bay took on the role of NHL villain.
JULIAN MCKENZIE: Well, what about the Tampa Bay Lightning here, man? like, I know they lost. But I don’t think there’s that much shame to lose, man. Like, three consecutive appearances in the Stanley Cup Final. They were so close to founding a dynasty. I don’t know if they are necessarily finished. I think it will be very difficult for them to come back to the Stanley Cup Finals because of the difficulty for the losing teams. But they’re a very good Eastern Conference team. And Omar has his hand up, and he’s not going to let go. So I’ll just let him go.
SAM Chang: He’s had his hand up since you started.
JULIAN MCKENZIE: I say. So go ahead, brother.
OMAR: May I–
JULIAN MCKENZIE: To chase.
OMAR: –just get, like, three minutes? OKAY.
JULIAN MCKENZIE: Three minutes? [LAUGHS] Good God.
OMAR: Just three minutes. OKAY.
JUSTIN CUTHBERT: No one has ever asked for three minutes before.
OMAR: Before having…
JULIAN MCKENZIE: It’s very precise.
OMAR: Before having… yes. Just before I get to the question and the subject of Julian…
JULIAN MCKENZIE: Your timer is on.
OMAR: –I think that’s– thank you. — Its very important. I don’t know if I mean embarrassed, or if it was funny. Or I don’t know, man. But the amount of moaning I saw on Twitter yesterday…oh, the ref screwed up the Lightning. Oh, the league needs to investigate the refereeing.
What? What? Like, are you guys– We’re talking, like, the same playoffs, the same playoffs that only had three suspensions, the same playoffs where Ryan McDonagh sent someone to knock Narnia through the boards and only got two minutes? Like– like– so– and the thing is, it’s like, it would be a thing if it was just, like, a few people. En masse… en masse complaints about arbitration.
And it’s like, hey, the refereeing isn’t perfect. And you know– and you know why I know the refereeing isn’t perfect? Here’s another thing. You know what? We should stop refereeing. And, you know, things happen in hockey games. And that’s how it goes. It’s just playoff hockey. You know what?
JULIAN MCKENZIE: This is the way–
OMAR: I say–
JULIAN MCKENZIE: –that things are going.
OMAR: Yeah. It’s like that… and you know why I know that, Julian? You know how I know – Because Lightning fans were saying that to those fans the whole first round. Every time we complained about the refereeing, ooh, you know, it’s the playoffs. That’s what happens. That’s what happens.
So now that the shoe is on the other foot, now that’s a problem. Now that’s a problem. OKAY. You know what? You know what? David Kampf should have apologized. David Kampf should apologize when he tapped someone on the shoulder and self-thumped because then…
JULIAN MCKENZIE: I don’t know if he should apologize.
OMAR: Because then– oh, no, no, because you know what? Because Steven Stamkos can shoot a puck at a referee and apologize. Its good. Good. Good. You know what?
SAM Chang: I have to say, like–
JUSTIN CUTHBERT: Was it three minutes?
JULIAN MCKENZIE: Yeah, I think it’s, like, less than three minutes. I am really very impressed.
SAM Chang: It was impressive. I was just going to say, look, if we couldn’t investigate the officiating in 2011, when Colin Campbell’s son literally played on one of the teams when he was… well, he took of hindsight. I’m sure he did. I don’t think you can investigate anything afterwards.
But on top of that, on top of what you say, it wasn’t just on Twitter. It wasn’t just the moans you saw from the fans, which is fair enough. I think every fanbase does that. You complain when the calls go against you.
That was the team’s complaint. Like, until this season, I enjoyed Tampa. I didn’t care if they bypassed the taxi. Like, you know what? Want to take advantage of the rules, go ahead. I liked watching them play.
But this playoff, more than any playoff before it, it was, like — someone said last week, John Cooper is kind of allergic to giving credit to other teams. This–
JULIAN MCKENZIE: Someone said that, yeah.
SAM Chang: Constantly did that. It was Stamkos who complained nonstop. Like, the moans of the team, Pat Maroon losing his shit because Belmar went down during that game, like, the whole thing together was so ridiculous. It was so overdone.
JULIAN MCKENZIE: Don’t forget Kucherov on the bench, with about 20 seconds left.
JUSTIN CUTHBERT: It was wild.
SAM Chang: Yeah.
OMAR: What was that?
SAM Chang: Yeah.
JULIAN MCKENZIE: I don’t know what it was.
SAM Chang: Cuth nailed it. Cuth’s tweet last night, I thought, was perfect.
JUSTIN CUTHBERT: Yeah. I mean, while they were losing, they didn’t know how to lose. And clearly, it’s… you know, it’s very rare that they lose 11 straight wins. They didn’t really know how to go about it. And honestly, I think that’s why they lost Game 6.
Once they gave up the lead, they just lost it. Like, everything they did for the next five minutes was self-destructive. And they couldn’t get back into the game. I’ll give them credit, though. The moaning and all that stopped once the result was in hand. And I think John Cooper redeemed himself, to some degree, with what he said after the game. And I think the players were fine.
Like, I think once they had – when they were in the heat of the moment, when it was very emotional, they were extremely emotional. And it wasn’t the best look. I think there– we talked about them being bad guys earlier today, Julian. And I think they will become more and more so if they continue to be a very competitive team, partly because of what we have seen. But after they lost, I think it was good. While they were losing, it wasn’t that impressive.
JULIAN MCKENZIE: Yeah, that’s it, man. I think the Tampa Bay Lightning, the way they’ve approached this series, firmly implants them as the villain of the National Hockey League. And you need bad guys in sports. And it’s good that Tampa Bay is that villain.
SAM Chang: Yes, I want to clarify. I’m not… I’m not saying they shouldn’t. I thought it was a lot of fun that they behaved the way they behaved.
JULIAN MCKENZIE: Sure.
JUSTIN CUTHBERT: It was like… it was good versus evil at one point. Like, it’s– I’m not a movie buff. But I know the movies are based on that kind of stuff. It’s funny. People like that. And it was a great Stanley Cup final in part for that reason.