Leary tweeted a Game 7 prediction Wednesday: "[Brad] Marchand punches one Sedin, the other one falls down."
Henrik and Daniel Sedin have now both literally and figuratively become Boston's favorite punching bag, and their soft play in the Stanley Cup Final has warranted the criticism.
In Friday's Game 5, 19-year-old Tyler Seguin pushed Canucks captain Henrik Sedin in the back while chirping at him as Hank slowly skated in the opposite direction. In Monday's Game 6, rookie Brad Marchand repeatedly punched Daniel Sedin in the face after the whistle while Daniel impersonated an ice mannequin. When an official stood between the two, Marchand continued to laugh in Sedin's face.
In short, Boston's two most high-profile rookies punked the supposed heart and soul of the Western Conference champs. And if that's not the case, the Canucks' captaincy has been misplaced.
The Vancouver corner defends its pair by raving over their discipline, which can be noted. This series has featured 94 penalties and 337 penalty minutes, so it is smart to show some restraint and stay out of the box if possible.
The problem with that, though, is that the Sedins aren't helping their team when they're on the ice, so a bit of toughness might go a long way in these situations. Henrik, the Hart Trophy winner in 2009-10, led the NHL with 112 points last season, and Daniel, a Hart finalist this season, led the league with 104 points.
But they've been ghosts in this series, pale in passion and invisible in strength. Henrik, who didn't have a shot through three games, has one goal (in Game 6 garbage time), no assists, seven shots, six penalty minutes and a minus-3 rating. Daniel has been slightly more active with one goal, three assists, 25 shots, 24 penalty minutes and a minus-1 rating. Combined, they've got two goals, three assists and a minus-4 rating.
The strange question is: Does it even matter?
Daniel Sedin was an important piece in the Canucks' Game 2 victory, but Vancouver otherwise won without them. And if the Sedins showed up in Boston, would they have had any effect on the three games that were decided by a combined 17-3 margin?
The fact that the question even needs to be asked is startling. Surely, their presence commands the attention of Zdeno Chara and Dennis Seidenberg, and the Bruins deserve credit for shutting down the Sedins' contributions. At some point, though, the highly touted twins need to be accountable for their disappearing act. This series would very possibly still be heading to a Game 7 if they didn't exist, and that's a weird thing to say about potential back-to-back Hart Trophy winners.
And that's why they've become a joke to Bostonians.
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