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The Great Ones Just Find Ways To Win The Cup, And Now Connor McDavid Is Just 4 Wins Away From His First

Codie McLachlan. Getty Images.

It is cliche but the Stanley Cup is the hardest trophy to win in team sports. You can cheat your way to winning a World Series. You can get a great quarterback to ensure you always have a chance at winning a Super Bowl. Winning a championship in the NBA is like winning your local summer rec league--as long as you have the best players, you win.

There's no real blueprint to winning the Stanley Cup. You need to play a grueling 82-game schedule over the course of a 7-month regular season. Then you have a maximum of 28 chances to pick up 16 of the hardest wins of your entire life on your way to winning the Cup. Every team is great, every team wants it just as much as the next. You need to have talented players on your side, sure, but that talent doesn't always equal success in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Sometimes it takes a ton of failure in the playoffs to figure out how to finally get that success. And that's what all the great ones seem to be able to do. 

Ovechkin had years of being labeled as a choke artist in the playoffs. Crosby lost in the Cup Final in 2008. Stamkos and the Lightning lost the Cup Final in 2015, and were swept out of the 1st round in 2019 after winning the Presidents Trophy. The all eventually find a way to get the job done.

He's a 3x Hart Trophy, 4x Ted Lindsay Award, 5x Art Ross and 1x Rocket Richard winner. Connor McDavid could have hung his skates up yesterday and been a 1st ballot Hall of Famer. But legacy always starts and ends with championships. Will Connor McDavid be remembered as one of the greatest players to ever lace up a pair of skates, or will he be remembered as one of the best to never win a Cup? He's still 4 wins away from answering that question, but just getting to a point where they only need those 4 wins is half the battle. 

He wasn't going to let this series go back to Dallas for a game 7. I'm sure he wanted the people of Edmonton to be able to celebrate this win in person, but he also knows that Pete DeBoer simply does not lose game 7's. So he went alien mode in the first period to give the Oilers a 2-0 lead. And now the Oilers are a team who just find ways to hold on long enough to come out with the win in 2-1 games. Something you couldn't have said about this team 2 years ago when they got swept out of the Western Conference Final and gave up 22 goals in those 4 games. 

Which will be huge in this final series because the Stanley Cup Final between Edmonton and Florida is going to be a BLOODBATH. 

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Matthew Tkachuk is going to be bringing the Battle of Alberta back with him in this series. You have the best player in the world going up against the best playoff player on the planet. Make it go 7. 

P.S. -- Need her on the glass at every Edmonton home game in the Final. 

@JordieBarstool