Load up the wagons

TERRY JONES -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 4:20 PM ET


 TAMPA, Florida -- Forget the Canada thing, says Tampa Bay Lightning coach John Tortorella. Canada is going to love this Stanley Cup final because of the hockey thing.

 "Both teams attack," he said.

 "It's going to be a hell of a series, with both teams going straight ahead and pushing for it."

 Calgary coach Darryl Sutter agrees.

 "There has been a lot made about small markets and (this being) good for hockey, with a Canadian team in the final again.

 "But what nobody has talked about is that the reason these teams have had success - they're fun teams; they're exciting teams. And that's what's going to make this a great final series."

 It may not be "Montreal Canadiens Firewagon Hockey," or what would later become known as "Oilers Hockey," but it's going to be attack hockey.

 "I have always liked pressing, forechecking," said Tortorella. "I have never trapped. I don't like playing that way.

 "We like to push it up the ice and we feel defence starts when you don't have the puck. Why wait to get it back in the neutral zone? Why not get it now? It's pretty simple thinking and our players have bought into it. I think both teams are very similar. Both attack. They like to chase things down, too."

 Tortorella says he doesn't buy into the idea that two small-market teams from opposite corners of the country in a Stanley Cup final is a negative.

 "I think it's good to get some new blood in here.

 "I have heard and read some comments that it's Tampa Bay and another small-market team in Calgary and what's going on? I think it's terrific for the league. I've watched Calgary in their series. I think it's two teams who deserve to be here. These two teams belong here."

 Jarome Iginla agrees.

 "I think you have to give Tampa Bay credit. You could see them getting better and better and more and more fun to watch," said the Flames captain.

 "They have been able to combine high-octane offence with scoring and winning. They're fun to watch and they win, too.

 "You look at our team - right when Darryl Sutter came in, he said right from the start that he wanted us to be bigger and faster. There are a lot more teams that are quicker now and it's fun to watch."

 Sutter says while most people see Tampa as the offensive team of the two, they are actually very similar.

 "They're a team that forechecks, a team with speed," said Sutter.

 "Both are younger-type teams. Both teams are very good defensive teams, but the reason they are a good defensive team is that they are an aggressive team. I think we're similar types of teams."


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