Alternate endings usually suck.
With the exception of Will Smith’s “I Am Legend,” the ending a director didn’t use was left on the cutting floor for a damn good reason. It stunk! Scrap it!
They are usually a throw-in on a DVD/Blu Ray, basically an extra incentive to get some addict to spend $25 to own their movie and watch maybe one more time in their lifetime.
In sports, alternate endings only exist in our heads. The “what ifs” and possibilities swirl like a tornado of doubt, creeping into our heads and building a small shack to fuck with our minds. What if this guy didn’t get injured? What if this ball/puck bounced a different way? We rot our brains with it.
Saturday night at the TD Garden in Boston offered a scary alternate ending for Blues’ fans. The idea that Game on June 12 turns out a lot differently, as in the Blues losing. In essence, Brad Marchand keeping his team’s dream from being stolen. I get whiskey-less stomach cramps just thinking about it.
Then again, it was hard not to think about that as the Bruins outplayed, out-muscled, and outsmarted the Blues for 60 minutes, shutting them out 3-0. It was a full-fledged ass-kicking by the black and gold bastards. Dave Portnoy didn’t have to eat leftover “5.7, Frankie” pizza while watching porn. He had this game to savor.
As one Uber passenger told me late Saturday night, “Did you watch that Blues game? Sheesh?” There’s your quick recap, folks.
It shouldn’t have been a huge shock. The moment Vladimir Tarasenko went down for the road trip, things were stacked in Boston’s favor. That’s like walking towards the O.K. Corral without Doc Holliday. Going into a foreign jungle fight without Rambo. Talking on a Russian mobster in Chicago without Ivan Danko. You get the idea.
The Bruins were pissed anyway. Before a minute could pass in the game, Zdeno Chara, jaw all healed up, roughed up two Blues players at the same time. It was like watching two midget stunt doubles toy with Andre The Giant.
David Pastranak, whose name I proudly mastered last spring, collected the first goal on Boston’s power play, even though the tally was later revealed to be a regular strength goal.
Pretty standard stuff. Krug takes the puck from Marchand at the point, dishes a one-timer to Pastrnak, and he fires it on net, only to have it trickle past Jordan Binnington.
The second goal was pure sex appeal. Boston storms into the Blues’ end with numbers, and Bjork (not related to the weird singer) buries another perfectly fed one-timer. This time, it bruised the back of the net like a lethal rubber dart. The big guy in the section behind the goal felt it in his beard.
This one hurt because it was a shorthanded goal, and came off a defensive breakdown from Colton Parayko. Look, the party animal had a great game, but fucked up on this one play. The Blues had two forwards trapped in the offensive zone, and Parayko decided to step up near the blue line and flatten a Bruin. It looked hot enough, but it set the other three Bruins towards Binnington and the back-breaking goal.
The third goal, scored with less than a minute left in the game, was also shorthanded. Okay, it was an empty net “have a nice flight, boys” knuckle shot from Brandon Carlo all the way from his own end. Some stat line fluff for the guy and the true end to the game.
It was an ugly night. Outside of a few good efforts, you didn’t get much dazzle or execution from the Blues. They had a thrilling power play where it appeared every kind of short was thrown at Tuukka Rask, but he and the Boston defense kept them out of the net. Rask outplayed Binnington, who didn’t have a terrible night. The first goal is one he’d like back, but he made some key stops to keep the game 2-0 for quite a while.
The Blues missed a couple clear open nets due to pesky Boston defense, and simply failed on other opportunities. It wasn’t their night, and in the end, two points were handed over instead of a Stanley Cup.
Alternate endings suck. Thankfully, Saturday night wasn’t one of them, and it wasn’t a rematch either. It was a regular season game in October. A time where the Blues are usually still buffering, finding a way to come together and play good CONSISTENT hockey.
Onto the next one.