The Cage Match Tournament keeps on rolling. To keep up with demand, we are picking up the pace and releasing two articles per week. That means the polls are closing faster but it also means speedier results. This is good news for those of you following along.
For you newcomers, let’s get you caught up:
On Wednesday we opened the voting in the opening round of the Gretzky Bracket and over the past few days you have cast your votes. As advertised, the Gretzky Bracket was the most competitive yet, yielding our first true upset and some interesting results all around. Here’s how it played out:
#1 Henrik Sedin over #8 Joe Thornton – 127 votes to 12 votes
Spring has come early this year. Normally we have to wait until April or May for Thornton’s disappearing act but Thornton is treating us to something special this year. His Sharks are in an absolute free fall and may not even make the playoffs. As for his showing in this tournament, while he made noise in his play-in game, Thornton couldn’t even make a dent in this here matchup. Be gone Jumbo Joe, we are all tired of you haunting us every year.
#2 Daniel Sedin over #7 Eric Staal – 108 votes to 32 votes
Something stinks about the lopsidedness of this result. Since the lockout Staal has scored 0.97 points per game while Sedin has scored 1.05 points per game. Close.
Both have scored a 100-point season in that time, while neither one has scored less than 70 in a season in that time. They have been two of the most durable and consistent performers in the game. But Sedin is four years older. Not only that but he came into this matchup on a serious slump, while Staal was among the hottest players in the league.
I think Henrik got tired of smacking around Thornton and came to give his brother a hand here. The Sedins came in and tag-teamed the crap out of Staal. Maybe that’s all in the game and maybe Staal never would have pulled this one out on his own but he got done cold losing by this much.
But then again, Staal comes from a big family. He should’ve known better than to take on one of the Sedins because it is impossible to separate the two.
#6 Ilya Kovalchuk over #3 Zach Parise – 83 votes to 60 votes ***UPSET***
And the cuckolding of Zach Parise is now officially complete. I totally get it for the Devils. Kovalchuk is bigger, stronger and sexier. If you have to be shacked up with someone for a lifetime contract you gotta pick the bull. But if I’m Parise, I am feeling so hard done by from all of this. He poured his heart and soul into that franchise and instead Kovalchuk gets the contract and the big house with the white picket fence. The only thing left for Parise to do is get out there and get revenge. He should be getting with everybody and flaunting every bit of success he has in New Jersey’s face. Oh yes, it is on. It is on like King Kong…
Uhhh, so back to this matchup. Even more than the Devils, poolies have no choice but to side with the bull and while you knew it would be close, you almost can’t call this the upset that it is.
#4 Corey Perry over #5 Ryan Getzlaf – 109 votes to 31 votes
Woaaah! Is Perry still riding the momentum from the absolute spanking he gave the entire league last season or was everyone just afraid of what would happen to Getzlaf once he gets traded to Toronto this summer? Either way I think the margin between these two is thinner than Getzlaf’s hair and definitely thinner than the results show but maybe Getzlaf’s injury troubles the past few years left him vulnerable. Perry steamrolls his way to the next round.
Here is the updated bracket:
With the Gretzky Bracket out of the way we can now close out the first round with the opening matchups from the Lemieux Bracket and oh boy, there are some goodies in here! The polls will be closing on Tuesday night so make sure to get your votes in quickly. Here they are:
Remember to follow those links, cast your votes and make your voice heard!