A new story from The Rich Eisen Show


And it's the rich eisen show. Rich and I share many things in common. We've worked together at NFL network. We're both from new York and we're both huge hockey fans. I grew up in the era in which the islanders had a dynasty. So it is a distinct pleasure to say hello to one of the best in the business. Pierre McGuire longtime hockey adult is former head coach of the Hartford whalers, assistant coach for the Pittsburgh penguins. You've seen him on NBC, TSN sportsnet and Canada, and now you can see him throughout the Conference Finals on Stanley Cup central on YouTube, produced by the NHL, pair, we used to chat back in the glory days of NBC sports radio, it is great to reconnect today. Brian, it's really nice visiting me and thanks so much for having me on. My pleasure and I want to get the audience fully engaged because casual fans should be watching what's going on with these playoffs. What's more, it's the best product in all of sports. So watching the golden knights take care of the stars yesterday and over time, moving at two games to none in that series, Pierre this historic trend continues, all four games of these Conference Finals have gone to OT first time that's happened in NHL history. Is this as dramatic of a postseason as you can remember? Well, for sure. Absolutely. And one of the things that's really happened is because of the salary cap, which was implemented back in 2005, 2006 that season coming out of the nuclear winter where we didn't have a National Hockey League season. The parody around the National Hockey League has become unbelievable. And so we saw an 8 seat so far in this playoff, the Florida Panthers, not the number one seed, niece and a record setting team in the Boston Bruins and 7 games, then they beat Toronto, where most people thought after Boston got the Toronto was on their way to a Stanley Cup. They haven't won the Stanley Cup since 1967 and they hadn't won a playoff series since 2004 until this year where they beat the Tampa Bay lightning. So Brian, yeah, this has been an amazing playoff for the National Hockey League. I know some people are wondering about the TV ratings. I get that because you don't have the biggest markets in there, but the caliber of play, the level of intensity, the drama night tonight has been overwhelming. It's just been phenomenal. I'm so proud of the league. So proud of the players in the league and really, really proud of the coaching staff and the league and what they've been able to do so far. Well said, in Vegas, of course, has been an outstanding story since expansion year run to the Cup final and we've known about Jack eichel since he was the second overall pick in 20 15s draft right by Connor McDavid, pacing Vegas and scoring during the regular season. Yesterday impactful, again, that gorgeous pass in the final minutes of regulation setting up the tying goal, Pierre, what does Michael mean to this club and what do you like most about his game? Well, I think the biggest thing about Jack is just how fluidity she's so quick to lose pucks, a strong on the puck. He makes unbelievable plays that you saw in that beautiful spinning back and task to Jonathan Marshall yesterday in the last two and a half minutes of the game to tie it up. He's just he's an amazingly fun player to watch just because of the skill level and the patient that he does things. Brian, so that's fun. He really is a critically important player, obviously for the Vegas golden knights. I think in the last round when they beat Edmonton, the one thing that was really apparent, he took it as a challenge because Connor McDavid obviously went first in 2015 as you correctly said, he's a leading player for the Edmonton Euler. So Jack really took that as a challenge and you could see he responded to the challenge unbelievably well and he still planned and Connor's not. So it's a tremendous story that's being written in Vegas right now and one thing that's not getting enough attention is what they've done as a management team. George mcphee and Kelly mccrimmon have done an amazing job building that brand since they became an expansion team 5 years ago and it's just it's amazing to watch the development of their product. They've done a phenomenal job what a great hockey market Vegas is. It's unbelievable. Talking playoff hockey, there's nothing better than also having a conversation to analyze things with Pierre McGuire, check him out, Stanley Cup central on YouTube, tremendous production from NHL network. Let's jump over the east to talk about Florida's story and more late game heroics from Matthew kuchuk. He's been unbelievable with the game winner and back to back games in OT. We know about the lineage we know about his family. What makes him so effective when it matters the most. He can affect the outcome of a game in so many different ways, whether it's with his skill, whether it's through this tenacity, whether it's with his physical violence that sometimes he brings to the game. He plays it on the edge. There's no question about it. He can also affect the outcome of a game by intimidating people with some of the things he says. He's an amazingly talkative player in the next, but the line that he plays on right now, Brian, with Sam Bennett, who came down from Calgary just before Matthew got there in a trade and Nick cousins who's been really moved all around the league. He's found an amazing home on the left side on that line. That line has been wrecking havoc on the rest of the Eastern Conference in the playoffs. They did a number on the Boston Bruins, but they did a big number on the Toronto Maple Leafs and so far in this year's Carolina. They're basically got Florida, too not the lead in the series because of the heroics of the line, but in particular Matthew. But it's all the different things he can do, Brian, that really affect the outcome of games and he's so consistent with all those things his pace is skill. His physical determination is nastiness. He's just every team in the league needs a map you could chuck the problem is they don't make a lot of that. Pierre McGuire, a guest here on the rich eisen show Pierre. We know the players can't look ahead and we know what two zero lead is far from insurmountable and playoff hockey. But let's say things don't change and we're looking at Florida and Vegas and the Stanley Cup final. What would be your early thoughts on that matchup? Oh, that would be an amazing matchup because they're pretty similar in terms of style of play. The one thing I'd say about Florida that has really separated them from a lot of teams is playoff season their second periods. That's the period of the long change. They have been so dynamic in Florida. They really play to the strength of the long line change and they're so smart and how they approach it palmaris in this step in Florida the year of a lot of credit for the schematic that they've presented. So that's one place where I think they've got a bit of an advantage on Vegas. And also right now in goal. I mean, no disrespect to Aidan hill was planning to offer Vegas and he's been outstanding. But Sergei bobrovsky right now has been amazing. He's been absolutely amazing, Brian. And when you consider the first two games as playoff season for the Florida Panthers, Alex Lyon, a 30 year goalie out of Yale University, which is starting goalie, and vibrato was watching from the bench, and then it didn't work out real well for Alex Lyon and Rossi came in. And the rest is history, and he's been phenomenal for Florida. So I see the goaltending would probably slide a little bit towards Florida. And then most of the rest of it's pretty equal. It would be if that and I stress if I don't want to disrespect Carolina or disrespect Dallas. Who are two formidable foes too. But if that were to be a Stanley Cup final, it would be a tremendously difficult final to win for either team. Pierre, as I mentioned at the start of the conversation, I've enjoyed your work for years. I always learn something when we would chat periodically on NBC sports radio, great to see you again with the video component, Stanley Cup central on YouTube. I appreciate you taking the time and enjoy the game tonight. Thanks so much for having me on, Brian, I

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