Give the devils their due

Kevin Adshade
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Okay, I'll be up front about this, to get it out of the way and let you rest easy: the Pittsburgh Penguins will win Game 7 on Friday night, upending the Detroit Red Wings down in the Motor City. Sidney Crosby will get his first Stanley Cup and Nova Scotia will see yet another Lord Stanley-flavoured parade (and by the way, isn't our flag the coolest of all Canadian provincial flags? I rather think it is; not even close, really).
Never mind that Detroit is tough on home ice (they are tough wherever they're playing of course), the odds will favour Pittsburgh in this one. In the first six games of what has evolved into a great series, the home team prevailed in each. Some say that's an obvious trend that won't be halted, I say the road team is due. Luckily enough for Pittsburgh, that would be them. Not only that, Sidney is due for at least a two or three-point game so put that in your bong and smoke it, Michael Phelps.
The Montreal Canadiens were the most recent team to win a Game 7 of the Cup final on the road, when they did it back in 1971 at Chicago. Furthermore, Game 7 of the Cup final has not gone to overtime since 1954, when someone named Tony Leswick scored the winner in Detroit's victory over Montreal. And oh yeah, none of the first six games of the 2009 final went to OT.... hmmmm... why not; Penguins win 4-3 in overtime. I'd lay big money on that if I were you. I won't, but I would if I were you.
* * *
This past Sunday offered a rare opportunity to watch Tiger Woods and Roger Federer do their thing on the big stages, same day. At the Memorial, not a major but close in that it's played on a great golf course (and it's Jack Nicklaus's tournament, so everyone wants it more), Tiger came from behind to win in dramatic fashion. As others stumbled, Tiger closed with birdies on three of the final four holes, including a 7-iron to about a foot on the final hole. It's why Tiger is Tiger and everyone else isn't.
A few hours earlier Sunday, Federer tied Pete Sampras for the all-time record of 14 Grand Slam wins. More importantly for him, he won the French Open, the war of attrition tennis tournament he had never secured, one many felt Federer needed to cement his status as the all-time greatest. There is little doubt now.
Federer is not only a great champion, he's humble and even downright nice; not a churlish, childish ranter (McEnroe, Connors) or a phony, camera-seeking image hog with a little girly-voice when he's upset at a ref's call (Agassi).
Watching Woods and Federer is not exactly like watching Shakespeare write and Monet paint. Art is subjective, but sports usually are not; they are the best, ever, at what they do.

Kevin Adshade is a columnist
with The News

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Recent comments

  • Smalls
    January 18, 2010 - 13:21

    I love Sidney Crosby. He's so cute.

  • podiddly
    January 18, 2010 - 12:39

    the french open is lame and detroit by 3 goals

  • Adshade who?
    January 18, 2010 - 12:38

    In my opinion, Adshade is out of his league and not qualified to offer an educated opinion in regards to any aspect of hockey insight. Clearly he takes bad not while studying Hockey Central or TSNs hockey insider. Where did you come from? Can we see a sports columnist with some degree of common sense combined with credibility. Go Wings!