We come to #13 in our ranking of the 2014 Playoff Series.
Normally an original 6 battle between two of the more successful teams in the past few seasons would rank much higher on this list, especially since the Boston Bruins and Detroit Red Wings hadn’t met in a playoff series in 57 years. However, despite making their 23rd straight playoff appearance the Wings were simply too beat up to put up much of a fight against the President’s Trophy winning Bruins.
Detroit got out to the series lead and created a buzz with a hard-fought 1-0 win on one of the best goals of the playoffs by Pavel Datsyuk.
It was all downhill after that for the Wings, as the Bruins got their legs under them and asserted their dominance. They took game 2 by a 4-1 mark and recorded a 3-0 shutout in game 3. The Wings looked better in game 4, jumping out to a 2-0 lead, but their playoffs might have just ended when the Bruins came back to win 3-2 in overtime. They took game 5 with a 4-2 win and moved on to the second round while the Wings got some much needed time to recover from the vast array of injuries.
The Wings were hobbled by injury, with Henrik Zetterberg coming back for Game 4 from the injury sustained in the Olympics, but was far from 100%, as was Datsyuk, but he was able to suit up for all the games. Leading scorer Daniel Alfredsson missed two games with an upper body injury and Jimmy Howard missed the fourth and fifth games with the flu. That turned what was already a tough hill to climb into a mountain.
The Bruins rode on the coattails of goalie Tuukka Rask, who was outstanding with a 1.16 GAA and .961 SP. The Bruins got better and stronger as the series went on and Detroit simply didn’t have the punch back.
Boston went on to play the Habs in the second round, and that series was a classic that will be reviewed much, much later in this countdown.
The Red Wings simply didn’t put up much of a fight after game one, and were dominated in one of the most one-sided series of the season. Even the cache of the original 6 matchup couldn’t save the series from being ranked #13 of 15 playoff series of 2014.