It’s not quite Wayne Gretzky versus the Toronto Maple Leafs in 1993 at the Maple Leaf Gardens. A Stanley Cup berth isn’t at stake this time, however, the Game 7 matchup this Wednesday night, May 10th, between the Anaheim Ducks and the Connor McDavid-led Edmonton Oilers has must see TV written all over it.
If you haven’t heard yet, Connor McDavid is the next greatest thing the NHL has seen since Sidney Crosby bursted onto the scene in 2006. The Ducks have all the experience but in a pressure-packed Game 7 it might be the team that has nothing to lose that has the advantage on Wednesday night.
According to a Toronto Sun article in 2013, four million people watched the LA Kings defeat Toronto in that eventful Game 7 24 years ago. For what it’s worth, it will be interesting to see how the TV ratings will measure up tonight when the Oilers look for their first Conference Finals appearance in 11 years.
The script that has played out over the first six games of this series has already been storybook worthy. Two major meltdowns by Edmonton in Games 4 and 5 was followed up by an Oilers slaughtering in Game 6 that saw Edmonton thrash Anaheim, 7-1.
With this year’s NBA playoffs being anything but exciting this year, so far at least, two Game 7’s back-to-back featuring the three best players in the game should capture the American audience in the process. If tonight doesn’t, what the heck will? The NHL is at a pivotal point right now. The sports’ next superstar is playing in Edmonton, a city where three-quarters of Americans might not be able to pin-point on a map in a game that would be similar to pin the tail on the donkey.
Who knows, this might be the last Crosby/Ovechkin Game 7 duel also, providing more reassurance that this year’s Edmonton/Anaheim matchup will be that compelling.