TAMPA, Fla. — Here are five things to watch in the Stanley Cup final between the Tampa Bay Lightning and Chicago Blackhawks:
[np_storybar title=”Breaking down the Stanley Cup final” link=”http://news.nationalpost.com/sports/nhl/chicago-blackhawks-vs-tampa-bay-lightning-breaking-down-the-stanley-cup-final”][/np_storybar]
1. Experience X-factor
Lightning players are tired of hearing they’re less experienced than their opponent, a common refrain since the first round. But it’s true: While Tampa Bay has earned valuable experience in these playoffs, the Blackhawks have a core with two Stanley Cup rings. The Anaheim Ducks found out what that meant when Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane took over Games 6 and 7.
2. Testing the depths
Chicago’s top four defencemen — Duncan Keith, Niklas Hjalmarsson, Brent Seabrook and Johnny Oduya — are top notch, but things get hairy when they’re not on the ice. The Lightning would be wise to try to get either the “Triplets” line — led by centre Tyler Johnson — or Steven Stamkos’s…
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