Everett Silvertips players Mitch Love (left) and Jeff Harvey face the Medicine Hat Tigers during the 2004 WHL championship series. (Michael O’Leary / The Herald)

Everett Silvertips players Mitch Love (left) and Jeff Harvey face the Medicine Hat Tigers during the 2004 WHL championship series. (Michael O’Leary / The Herald)

POLL: Who wins a series between Silvertips finals teams?

The WHL finals would have begun Friday; Everett reached the WHL championship series in 2004 and 2018.

No, the Everett Silvertips won’t be playing in the WHL championship series this year, despite having a team that was a strong contender for that distinction.

But that doesn’t mean we can’t have some fun with the Tips and the WHL finals.

The WHL championship series would have begun Friday, if the end of the season and playoffs hadn’t been cancelled as part of the measures to slow the spread of coronavirus. So for this week’s Seattle Sidelines poll, let’s speculate on the Everett teams that reached the championship series in years past.

The Tips have never won a WHL championship in their 17-season history, but twice Everett has won the Western Conference and advanced to the finals: 2004 and 2018. What would happen if we pitted those squads against one another?

In 2003-04 the Tips were an expansion team populated by players who were acquired in the expansion draft, meaning Everett had approximately the 15th-best player from every other team. Not only is that not a formula for winning a championship, it’s usually a formula for finishing dead last.

But the Tips, instilled with work ethic and discipline under former NHL coach Kevin Constantine, turned in a season worthy of the famous Miracle On Ice. Everett shocked the hockey world, finishing 32-27-2-0 to win the U.S. Division, then pulled off a string of playoff upsets to win the Western Conference before running out of gas and falling to Medicine Hat in four games in the finals.

That team may have lacked top-end talent — John Dahl and Riley Armstrong tied for the team lead in scoring with just 44 points — but it made up for it with organization and dedication to the cause, embodied by franchise legend Mitch Love. Defenseman Ivan Baranka gave the team a foundational piece on the blue line, while goaltender Jeff Harvey chipped in with a strong campaign.

In 2017-18, Everett again found itself with a first-time coach in Dennis Williams, and the Tips again were not held in high regard before the season began, with some speculating it may be the year Everett’s string of making the playoffs in every season came to an end.

Instead, the Tips grew stronger as the season progressed, finishing 47-20-2-3 to again win the U.S. Division title, then rolled through the playoffs before falling to Swift Current in six games in the finals.

That team was led by the most accomplished goaltender in WHL history in Carter Hart, while Patrick Bajkov tallied 100 points to become the first triple-digit scorer in franchise history. Bajkov’s fellow overagers, Matt Fonteyne and Kevin Davis, also had standout seasons, while the likes of Connor Dewar and trade acquisition Garrett Pilon provided quality scoring depth.

So which team would win a seven-game series between Everett’s finals teams? Would it be the scrappy underdogs from 2004, or the more polished crew from 2018? Cast your vote here:


Talk to us

More in Sports

The Silvertips' Koen Macinnes stops a shot during a game against the Blazers on Saturday, Feb. 12, 2022, at Angel of the Winds Arena in Everett. (Kristin Ostrowski / Everett Silvertips)
Tips trade netminder, add 11 players through drafts

Everett sent Koen MacInnes to Regina for picks. Forward Julien Maze headlines the draft haul.

White line on Green grass sport field for sport concept
Prep results for Thursday, May 19

Postseason prep results for Thursday, May 19: (Note for coaches/Scorekeepers: To report… Continue reading

Snohomish's Evalyn Messina holds the championship trophy Thursday evening at Phil Johnson Ball Field in Everett, Washington on May 19, 2022. The Bruins defeated the Panthers 14-7 to claim the NW District 1 3A Championship title. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Another milestone: Cascade softball rolls past Snohomish for district crown

The Bruins continue their breakthrough season and blast 7 homers to beat the Panthers 14-7 in the 3A District 1 title game.

Boston Red Sox's Trevor Story is congratulated after his second two-run home run of the night, during the third inning of the team's baseball game against the Seattle Mariners at Fenway Park, Thursday, May 19, 2022, in Boston. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
Story hits 3 homers, Red Sox power past M’s

Seattle’s pitchers struggle in a 12-6 loss at Fenway Park.

Everett
Pro skateboarding competition coming to Everett in August

Street League Skateboarding’s championship tour will be at Angel of the Winds arena for two days.

Skyline’s Ryan Grace is swarmed by teammates after striking out a batter to complete a 10-inning complete game win against Jackson Wednesday, May 18, 2022, during a Class 4A matchup at the Phil Johnson Ballfields in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Jackson softball falls to Skyline in 10-inning bi-district marathon

The T-wolves lose a 3-2 extra-inning heartbreaker in the 4A District 1/2 semis, but still have 2 more chances to reach state.

Bonney Lake's James O'Callaghan stands dejected as Edmonds-Woodway's Victor Ibarra, far right, celebrates Edgar Cabrera’s goal in the second half Tuesday evening at Edmonds-Woodway High School in Edmonds, Washington on May 17, 2022. The Warriors won 3-1. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Edmonds-Woodway advances to state soccer round of 16

Forced into a 3A state play-in game, the Warriors put on a clinic in a 3-1 win over Bonney Lake.

White line on Green grass sport field for sport concept
Prep results for Wednesday, May 18

Prep results for Wednesday, May 18: (Note for coaches/Scorekeepers: To report results… Continue reading

Seattle Mariners' Ty France hits a single during the first inning of a baseball game against the Toronto Blue Jays in Toronto on Wednesday, May 18, 2022. (Jon Blacker/The Canadian Press via AP)
France, Gonzales leads Mariners past Blue Jays

Seattle salvages the series with a 5-1 win.

Most Read