What an amazing past 2 months filled with NHL and NBA Playoff action! Almost every night had a game that came down to the final shot or overtime. In the end, the Boston Bruins and Dallas Mavericks took home the titles. Hereâ€™s a quick look back on some of the best of the 2011 NHL and NBA Playoffs.
Best Series: Vancouver Canucks vs. Chicago Blackhawks
Any time a team comes back from being down 3-0 to force a game 7, you know it’s a great series. Add in the two clubsâ€™ recent rivalry, and that both games 6 & 7 went to overtime, and you have the recipe for the best series of the 2011 playoffs.
Breakout Performance: Brad Marchand
This rookie put up 19 points in 25 games! Not enough for you? In game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals, he posted 2 goals and an assist!
Biggest Surprise: The Capitals get swept in the Conference Semi’s
A year removed from being upset after having a 3-1 series lead, the Capitals again earned the #1 seed only to be swept by the Lightning.
Most Memorable: Tim Thomasâ€™s hit on Henrik Sedin
A defining play by the Finals MVP. Thomas put a huge hit on the Canucks superstar. Henrik Sedin will never live this down. Check out the hit here.
Best Series: Oklahoma City Thunder vs Memphis Grizzlies
This terrific series highlighted two up & coming teams in the West. The 7 game showdown was extra special for the reason that it showcased two small market teams with astonishing fan support. This match up should be a reoccurring series for many years to come.
Breakout Performance: JJ Barea
Itâ€™s great for the game when a guy who looks like he could be your neighbor delivers under pressure. Barea had 7 double digit point games including 17 & 15 in the last two games of the NBA Finals.
Biggest Surprise: LeBron Jamesâ€™ Finals performance
This will go down as one of the most puzzling events in NBA history. The 2x NBA MVP only averaged 17.7 ppg, which was the largest drop off in points from a regular season to an NBA Finals in history.
Most Memorable: Dirk Nowitzkiâ€™s Playoff performance
His playoff performance catapulted his resume from NBA superstar to NBA legend.