Patrick Smith/Getty Images

Clean, high-effort, rough and tumble hockey. That’s what makes the Stanley Cup finals so much fun. 

By Dan Gartland
May 28, 2019

Because it’s the Cup

Nobody turns up the intensity in a championship situation like hockey players. The Super Bowl looks like any other football game, and the World Series is indistinguishable on the field from a baseball game in mid-June. But the Stanley Cup finals is hockey turned up to 11—just ask Bruins defenseman Torey Krug. 

In the third period of Game 1 against the Blues, Krug looked like a man possessed. He and St. Louis winger David Perron were engaged in some shenanigans in front of the net that quickly turned into a wrestling match in which Perron ended up ripping off Krug’s helmet. An irate Krug, still missing his lid, then zoomed down the ice and leveled Robert Thomas with a massive body check. 

Perron and Krug easily could have been given offsetting roughing minors, but not when the Cup is on the line. The referees know better than to call ticky-tack penalties like that in the biggest seven games of the season. 

That’s the definition of Stanley Cup hockey. It’s physical, it’s intense and best of all it was clean. Krug’s hit on Thomas was powerful, but it was also delivered right to his shoulder. The sequence brought the Boston crowd to its feet and fired up Krug’s teammates on the bench as they managed to hold onto their lead. 

“That gave me some goosebumps. He’s battling in our zone. I don’t know what kind of twister game they were playing in front of our net. But I was hoping we would change and he doesn’t have a helmet on, but he goes right up the ice and lays a big hit,” Boston center David Backes said after the game. “I think that was Torey Krug establishing himself in this series. And that was, from my perspective, a big boost.”

Great play or stupid decision?

The Mets lost to the Dodgers last night mostly because of Cody Bellinger, who hit a home run and threw out two runners on the bases. The second man he gunned down was Carlos Gomez in the top of the eighth, as he was trying to advance to third on a sacrifice fly. 

What I’m asking myself is if Gomez deserves as much blame here as Bellinger does credit. On the one hand, you never want to make the last out at third; on the other, it took a stunning throw from Bellinger to get Gomez. Maybe the blame lies with Tomas Nido, who didn’t hustle to home and thus didn’t score before the out at third was recorded. 

Who wants free stuff?

UPDATE: Thanks to everyone who entered!

We’ve got a pretty exciting giveway today: BEER. 

Terrapin Beer Co.

Atlanta-area brewery Terrapin Beer Co. is partnering with former Braves outfielder Jeff Francoeur on a new limited-edition beer that’ll only be available at the ballpark and the surrounding area, but you have a chance to score a 32 oz. crowler for yourself. 

These days Francoeur is growing blueberries on a farm in rural southeastern Georgia, and Terrapin is using those berries to make a beer called “Frenchy’s Blues.” It’s a Berliner Weiss “with a slight blueberry on the nose followed by a pleasant tartness that cleans well with a backend sweetness from the berries to balance out the flavor.”

Terrapin is giving us three crowlers to give away to Hot Clicks readers who follow these specific instructions to enter: Send me an email (dan.gartland@simail.com) and use the subject line Frenchy giveaway (no punctuation, no mispellings). In the body of the email, tell me what instrument 96-year-old WWII vet Pete DuPré used to play the national anthem at the USA-Mexico women’s soccer game (the answer is in Monday’s Hot Clicks). Obviously, you must be at least 21 years of age to enter. I’ll send a crowler of beer to the 50th, 100th and 150th person to email me following those instructions.

(If you don’t like beer, we have another giveaway tomorrow you’ll probably like.)

The best of SI

Bill Buckner, who died Monday, deserves to be remembered for more than just one blunder. ... The Raptors can shock the world and beat the Warriors. Here’s how. ... The All-NBA supermax is creating more problems than answers.

Around the sports world

ESPN has a long story about the current mess going on with the Lakers. ... Warriors media members weigh in on whether Kevin Durant could handle the New York media if he goes to the Knicks. ... The Blues surprised all their full-time employees with a trip to Boston for the Stanley Cup finals. ... Yankees fans showered Manny Machado with boos, even though the Yankees never offered him a contract. ... Capitals star Evgeny Kuznetsov has denied using cocaine after a video surfaced of him in a room with some white powder

Protect your neck

View this post on Instagram

... How?

A post shared by MLB ⚾ (@mlb) on

Looks like Yolmer Sanchez had a fun Memorial Day

View this post on Instagram

Nobody has more fun than @yolmersanchez5

A post shared by MLB's Cut4 (@mlbcut4) on

Kendall Gill made $43 million in 15 NBA seasons

As good a catch as you’ll ever see

So he really did run away

One of Bill Buckner’s easily forgotten cultural contributions

He’s not wrong

How Finland celebrated its world hockey championship

More official team accounts should swear

Not sports

This is believed to be the first photo of an albino giant panda. ... Elton John wrote about refusing to let his life story be toned down for the new Rocketman biopic. ... Tyler the Creator’s new album is his first to go No. 1 and he shared a video of himself crying after hearing the news.

I’m here for this

 

Maybe not the best plan

So that’s how they make the magic

Where Jason Mamoa lived between Game of Thrones shoots

A good song

Email dan.gartland@simail.com with any feedback or follow me on Twitter for approximately one half-decent baseball joke per week. Bookmark this page to see previous editions of Hot Clicks and find the newest edition every day. By popular request I’ve made a Spotify playlist of the music featured here. Visit our Extra Mustard page throughout each day for more offbeat sports stories.

You May Like

HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)