Consider the following scenario:
--A seven game series sits 2-1 with the next game being a home game for the team trailing the series.
--The young start player of the home team trailing in the series is being played roughly, so much so that it is limiting his effectiveness, according to most watching.
--The home team gets blown out in game 4 as much as any team ever has in the sport’s playoff history. And the blowout starts really, really early.
In hockey there is a long string of fights involving every player on the roster, including the goaltender and, when he gets thrown out of the game, his backup. The coach gets multiple bench penalties, probably throws enough equipment on the ice to stock a Dick’s Sporting Goods and insults the weight, eating habits and genetic disposition of the ref to testicular cancer.
For Game 5, the team that lost will bring up a guy from the minors who averages more fights a week than he has teeth in his head. He will skate onto the ice with a pocket full of coupons for discounted emergency medical care, which he will pass out to the other team before faceoffs. The other team will make a similar roster move.
In basketball, the coach gets not a single technical foul and afterward admits he couldn’t motivate his players:
"I want them to think about what happened tonight and rewind in their minds because when we get to Denver, it's a one-game elimination process," [Byron] Scott said. "I told our guys in the first quarter, if we don't match their intensity level this game is going to be over quick and I don't think we ever did." He publicly absolves the refs of any blame.
Before Game 5, players on the losing team will Twitter fans the name of the club where he and his teammates will be hanging out after they are eliminated.