This match up features 2 teams who went 4-0 in their opening series'... Who is ready to keep the momentum going. It's iBlend99 vs BigLeagueMachew, 2 big time personality defencemen that are also 2 of the most liked and respected owners in this league by many of their teammates and peers.
iBlend99 is the longest tenured owner in the WoCHL, and you would think that when you own a lot of teams over a lot of seasons, your winning % as an owner starts to even out. However, that is not the case for iBlend99, as his winning % continues to go up. A lot of speculation surrounded the draft for RedruM, as gone were the days of RiDiCuLus_Mark and FC_Buck lighting up the scoreboard night in and night out. TTV_mattysnipes knew that there were big shoes to fill on RedruM's top line, and TTV_mattysnipes rose to the occasion. TTV_Mattysnipes put up 44 points in just 12 games, while finding the back of the net 26 times. He also leads the team in playoff points with 13. RedruM's goalies have also been solid in the crease this season, with starter Rooshow putting up a 2.19 GAA and .837 sv%. On the defensive end, SumeetK04, who only played 10 regular season games, has become a different beast this playoffs, and I got a chance to interview him on his clutch defensive performances in his recent playoff runs.
TNT: The Rush swept the Wrath last round. What do you think led to that success, and how do you think you guys can put a halt to their hot playoff start?
SK04: "Kudos to the Rush for having a successful first round against the Wrath. That's two fantastic teams who battled it out. Just taking a look at the Rush's points leaders and you see a pretty stacked lineup lead by Yung, Irish, and BillyBobJo. With solid depth and great goaltending provided by Mack it's pretty clear on what led to their success. I think for us, the key is to control the amount of quality chances their top line gets by playing our style. It's going to be an exciting series with two hot teams coming off sweeps. We're ready for em!"
TNT: 26 takeaways, only 8 giveaways, not to mention your 85% passing %; Do you think defence wins series? Do you consider yourself a defensive leader on your team?
SK04: "I believe I've grown into a top defender in the league and have come along ways (Killjoy doesn't yell at me as much anymore). Winning a cup last season with a team everyone had being swept in the first round was one hell of a learning lesson. The amount of battles we had and the grind to the finals translated into me being a more confident and steady defender for RedRum. I've been in the league since Season 1 and am proud of the strides I've made since then. It helps having such awesome D partners as Yim, Bambi, & Blend."
TNT: Are there any interesting pre-chel rituals any guys on the team have? Even yourself? What helps you prep for these important games?
SK04: "We run our pre game rituals in a pretty business like fashion. We're not here to mess around. I like to get a nice glass of whiskey before warmies. Staying loose and remembering to just have fun playing the game is a great way to keep the winning culture around. I'd like to say that the RedruM crew will smoothly cruise through this round!"
As for the Rush, a lot of people wondered what kind of team would be built around superstar Yung96, and I'm sure that any Rush fans out there are pretty happy with the result. The Rush went 20-7-3 this season in what many called a less-than-competitive division. With their 4-0 sweep in round 1, the Rush surely shut up any of their haters. The forward line of Yung96, IRISH_BASTAHD617 and Billybobjo12344 came alive as they put up 14, 11 and 10 points respectively in just 3 games. fn_trzpx-, tdesilva94, and Hunter-Shank also had 6, 5 and 5 points in just 1 game a piece. With solid all around defence, the Rush looked pretty comfortable in round 1, but what stole they show for this team, wast starting goaltender mackmiyagi. Mackmiyagi put up a 1.67 GAA and a .848 sv%. I also had a chance to catch up with him on his performance in the crease heading into the second round.
TNT: You guys are facing RedruM... the only other team to sweep their opponents in round 1. What do you think is their strength as a team and how do you stop them from capitalizing on that strength?
MM: "I honestly haven't paid much attention to the other matches, I'm just focused on our team. Congrats to them on the sweep. I think we beat them both times we played them this season, so if we play our normal game it should be a good series. I don't remember their strengths, hell I don't remember any of their players lol."
TNT: You have a 1.67 GAA and .848 sv% in the crease. You also came into the season as one of the top goalies on many owners draft boards. How have you achieved your status as a goalie? Any tips for guys trying to make the transition?
MM: "I only started playing goalie a few months after nhl 21 was released because none of my friends would. For anyone who had played goalie, you know it is a never ending battle of cra you deal with, no matter what skill level you are. The biggest challenge as goalie is to shake off the bad goals and keep battling, positioning is everything."
TNT: are there any interesting pre-chel rituals any guys on the team have? Even yourself? What helps you prep for these important games?
MM: "Not sure about the other guys on the team but for bigger games like playoff games I find less is more. I usually do a one or two game warmup. Anything more can be mentally draining, especially for a goalie."
One perfect record ends tonight... Who is it going to be? Tune in tonight to find out!!!
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