Q. This is going to be a hard-hitting, physical series a real flashback to the 70s. So it’s kind of the perfect series for you guys.
MIKE EMRICK: It’s just a thrill to be headed to this series because there are an overwhelming number of storylines, and that photograph (Flying Orr) was on the front door of my office at Geneva College as I taught that next fall in the fall of 1970, and I don’t know — Bruce Cassidy said that he was a newspaper boy up in Ottawa and he had that poster as one of the two posters in his room, and he declined official comment as to what the other poster was.
But it’s all a part of lore and memory, and memories are wonderful, but we’re about to make some more with a lot of large body forechecking teams. That will be exciting. Amidst all the cranes and skeletons of steel around TD Garden and anyone who is going to the series and hasn’t been there lately, there is a lot of that going on. There’s a lot of building going on, but there will be a lot of wonderful story building with this series.
EDDIE OLCZYK: I would have to say that that poster on his board was Farrah Fawcett, but that’s just an estimation by this one person right here. Two heavy teams, two big teams, two goaltenders playing extremely well. Tuukka Rask, I don’t think I’ve seen him play better in his career. Depth on the back end, fourth lines that can contribute — so-called fourth lines — I think the sky’s the limit for this series.
Q. Can you each recall where you were May 10th, 1970, if you did watch the game, what you remember of that day, maybe from a broadcast standpoint and also like Doc, if you kept the poster around.
EDDIE OLCZYK: No, that’s okay. Full disclosure, I was a little too young for that. I remember seeing that picture for the first time, though, and that was like one of those as an American-born player to see that picture and wanting to somehow, some way, get to the National Hockey League when you see that. I don’t care if you’re a Bruins fan or not, you emulate that, and I remember seeing it probably a couple of years later. But yeah, that’s one of those iconic images that just is so powerful when it comes to how great our game is and regardless of how old you may be, whether you saw it in person or not, I think that’s one of those pictures that everybody knows when they either saw it live or heard about it or saw that picture for the first time, it just, it’s just an incredible lasting memory.
MIKE EMRICK: Oh, I was watching in Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania. Teaching at Geneva College at the time, and over the summer I got the poster, but I was watching on black-and-white television just like everybody else that didn’t have the money for color back in those days and was excited about — it was no surprise that they won.
I was thinking, well, maybe Red Berenson can set up somebody in overtime and this thing can go back for a fifth game, but it was pretty apparent that they were the better team. It was a question of whether they would win it or not, and they, in fact, did, and I got the poster over the summer, and at the school I was trying to sell hockey to anybody. I had the standings on my bulletin board in my office and I would change them every day with cards. I was a big hockey fan trying to promote hockey while on campus.
And so there was a woman named Marian Gilmore that was in charge of — she was in charge of the accounting department, where all the money was kept, and so when I ordered that poster, I ordered one of Gump Worsley and in a Montreal Canadiens uniform and, by George, she put it up in her office right above the safe. Seems like an appropriate place for Gump Worsley to be. That’s what I remember.
Q. Eddie, you have coached in the NHL and you see what Bruce Cassidy and Craig Berube have done in their second jobs. Curious your thoughts on those guys’ evolution from their first job to the second and just the idea of getting a second chance as coach and kind of how big a leap that is from a first job to a second job.
Doug Armstrong had to make a tough call in the middle of the year. He fires the coach and he said to me recently, I thought we were much better to start the year than we showed and that’s why I had to make a change. And even he tempered his approach with Berube by giving him an interim tag and Berube took some time with his team to get used to his team — it’s tough when you come in the middle of the season, you don’t have a training camp you don’t get a chance to really put your major imprint on it right away. So they stumbled along and then all of a sudden — you got to be good whether you’re a GM and an organization and you sometimes have to be lucky. Both Berube who had Binnington in the minors and Doug Armstrong said to me, we never saw this coming, we had no idea he was going to be this good. And that missing piece, a couple guys he brought in, Bozak was also a pretty good acquisition and give them credit for Blais and give them credit for Robert Thomas and the drafting department, that’s, they have done it all and it’s come together at the right time, both teams seem to be peaking we’ll see how the time off affects both clubs.
The other day somebody asked Bruce Cassidy, any lineup changes, and he said, he didn’t say, we’ll see at game time. He said, well, listen, if Acciari can play, he’s in. If not, Wagner comes back in, or something to that effect. He was just like — there were no — there was nothing to hide from him, from his perspective. And that’s the way that both coaches are.
I think that it’s they have evolved. I’m sure they’re better coaches in their second positions. They have evolved, but their basic approach of telling it like it is I think is the proper one for coaches.
MIKE EMRICK: One other thing about Binnington that has been documented by other but he shared with me when I spoke with him in an afternoon game that the Bruins had in Pittsburgh before we had a night game the next day, was that the Bruins didn’t have a place for him to play a year ago and many of you listening to this know what happened. He wouldn’t take the assignment to the ECHL and they finally found him a place to play in Providence with the Bruins farm team. Four out of the guys that are on the roster for the Bruins in this final were teammates of his in Providence last year. And he had a wonderful record playing in Providence, he played well over many games there. He was 17-9-0 with the Providence Bruins and Grzelcyk was one of his teammates there and so he got through that last year and he started in San Antonio where the Blues have an American Hockey League team and he wasn’t their starting goaltender this year, he sat the bench for a while. Finally, they got off to such a sputtering start they gave him a chance to play and he was good. Then they started winning and then came the coaching change and all the rest. It will be fun documenting that when we get time to, once these telecasts begin, but that’s the meteoric rise that he had. And it’s going to be an exciting story for us to document and that will just give you an indication of the conversation I had with him and what it will eventually lead to when we get a chance to share it.
Q. Eddie, because of your experience with racetrack and that is the betting world, how you think the whole betting thing will influence the NHL?
EDDIE OLCZYK: This is an opportunity to really teach the game, expand the game to maybe an audience that is looking to play a side or play a total moving forward and look, the National Hockey League is all in. I know Sam and us at NBC are all in when it comes to look at this as this is the new world. Again, baby steps. We know the impact that wagering on National Football League games whether it’s total, whether it’s spreads, whether it’s first quarter, whether it’s first half, I mean all these things, I mean you look at how baseball wagering has evolved here you have five inning wagers and you have the full game wager and so I think, I think the sky’s the limit and I think that the game will adjust moving forward and the more people that have the confidence that think they know what’s going on they’re going to be much more apt to want to look at it and another opportunity to be entertained. I just think it’s something that was inevitable from our sport and the world that we live in now with phones that are in our hand that you can go ahead and get your feet wet if you would like, whether it’s horse racing or any other sport, it’s right at our disposal and I just think that it’s another avenue for us to help sell the game, promote the game, teach the game, and hopefully — we know there’s a lot of money when it comes to gambling on sports, we know that. I think it’s, for now, when it comes to hockey, it is truly an untapped market because this is all so new and so fresh and it’s going to be very exciting and look, there are going to be opportunities to — we see it in football, we see it in baseball, it shows directly revolving around matchups on a certain day. So there will be lots of opportunity for programming but certainly that’s all on Sam’s table and not ours and if he needs any help I’ll certainly raise my hand whether it comes to hockey or horse racing but I think it’s going to be great for the game, not only financially but also for the popularity there’s nothing better — I mean I know we’re talking about the gambling part of it — but the playoff hockey, there’s nothing better and people are, when people take a side, they are totally invested and when they see playoff hockey, I think we have those people for life, whether they’re wagering or not, it’s the greatest game in the world and hopefully we can have a huge score with what’s to take place here over the next little while.
Q. Doc any thoughts about retirement?
MIKE EMRICK: No way, I am having too much fun.