Man I took those losses hard back then. Didn't want to talk to anyone for days. Good old college days.
'03 - was very embarrassing. We were the defending champs. We still had that HOF roster. We played against the Disney Ducks. Getting swept was the worst part of it all. I couldn't look anyone in the eye for some time after that. I think we could have gone past the other teams in the West, but we'd probably lose to Jersey. They had a great team that year.
'04 - Got out of the first round, but that game 5 against the Flames screwed us. I still think we'd win the Cup if that puck doesn't hit Yzerman in the eye. San Hosay were playoff chokers who'd never get to the Finals. Tampa may have beaten us, but at least we'd be in the Finals.
'06 - What a stinker this was. Yzerman's last hurrah was hard to watch. Roloson was like 50 years old and we made him look amazing. In turn, Lilja made Lidstrom look like Aki Berg on that pairing. Having Draper on the top line was a joke. Maybe this was the worst of the three considering it was the third choke in a row. We'd probably lose to Anaheim in the following round, though. They had our number.
Looking back at it, all the teams we lost to went to game 7 of the SCF so there's something to be proud of. Also, I always thought the WIngs would be harder to beat if they got out of the early rounds. We'd do better against established teams than teams full of no-name jobbers relying on some super goalie. Too bad we never got to find out.
Oh and Shanahan was awful in all those playoffs. Probably the main reason the team didn't keep him.