Well, the NHL season is over. They're celebrating in Boston and cleaning up in riotous Vancouver. As usual, the folks in Buffalo watched it all with interest.
NBC Sports has released the overnight viewership numbers for Boston's 4-0 win in Game Seven, and the Buffalo market ranked third in the United States with a 10.6 rating and 17 share. Boston was first with a record 43.4/64, while Bruins' minor-league affiliate town of Providence was second at 25.9/38.
Now, the stories from the Stanley Cup finale ...
*The Stanley Cup weighs nearly 35 pounds, but Boston Bruins captain Zdeno Chara hoisted it over his head today like it weighed nothing.
Chara was the first to lift the Cup after the Bruins' decisive 4-0 victory in Vancouver over the Canucks in Game Seven of the championship series Wednesday. He raised it to the sky again when he was the last player off the team's plane following a noisy overnight flight that landed at Logan International Airport at about 8:30 this morning. Then he lifted and shook it one more time when the team got off the bus in front of TD Garden minutes later.
"We got it done, we brought it back to Boston and this is where it belongs," coach Claude Julien said.
*Parked cars were set on fire, others were tipped over and people threw beer bottles at giant television screens in Vancouver following the Canucks' 4-0 loss.
People chanted obscenities and some leaped over raging bonfires as riot police moved in to try to restore order in the downtown streets strewn with garbage and filled with acrid smoke. Flames shot about 10 yards into the air off the cars and some bystanders tossed firecrackers.
The Vancouver Sun has front-to-back coverage of the rioting, with videos, pictures and essays.
(My buddy George Richards of the Miami Herald suggests on his On Frozen Pond Facebook page the rioting is due to the seamy underside of the city. I can't disagree. As I wrote for our 2010 Olympic Preview, "Vancouver has a homeless and panhandling problem that permeates the city, with an estimated 3,000 living on the streets. Vancouver also is lenient about drug use. The aroma of marijuana wafts through many neighborhoods, and the city is also the controversial home to North America's first supervised drug injection site."
It is certainly one of the most beautiful cities in North America -- if you're looking at it from the outside.)
*Although Brad Marchand appears headed for a long NHL career, he'll always have trouble topping what he did as a rookie while driving the Bruins to the Stanley Cup. Marchand had two goals and an assist in the Bruins' 4-0 victory, ending his first NHL playoff campaign in sparkling fashion.
*Roberto Luongo insists the Canucks will be back.
"We're devastated, but we're a good team and we'll be back," said the dejected Luongo, his voice breaking slightly as he fought back tears.
With 11 years left on a 12-year, $64-million contract, Luongo should be back for a long time. The question is whether Vancouver fans want him to return.
*Tim Thomas was too focused on winning the Stanley Cup to look back at what has been one of the most remarkable seasons ever by an NHL goaltender. When he finally does, it will be with a wide grin.
*(I don't gamble on sports -- anyone who's seen my caveat when I put up odds knows that -- but I wonder what I could have earned for picking Boston to beat Vancouver in the finals way back in October.)