1) On to the second round. With so many Game 7 series there is no layoff of any kind. Which is a very good idea. In years past sometimes there have been as many as 5 days between rounds. Giving fans alternative things to pay attention to in the spring months. Anyway on to our prediction for the 4 series set to commence today and tomorrow. First the West.
- No. 1 Vancouver vs. No. 5 Predators. If this series too place 3 weeks ago most would have given the nod to the canucks, but after barely surviving an opening round scare the 'Nucks look vulnerable. The defense first Preds are not a good matchup for the Canucks. We can see them exploiting the Vancouver defense and shaky Luongo to steal the series. Predators in 6
- No. 2 San Jose vs. No. 3 Detroit Don't let the seeding fool ya here. this is the biggest mismatch of the second round! The playoff hardened Wings playing at their best against the confidence brittle Sharks who barely survived beating a very weak Kings team. Just when you thought it was safe to watch playoff hockey again Shark fans..... Redwings in 5
- No. 1 Washington vs. No. 5 Tampa Bay. Many are stating the Caps are a new team now. However despite winning a first round decisively(finally) we don't see it that way. They had quite a few breaks to win against a very weak Ranger team and their 'issues' are far from solved. Even new team captain Jason Arnott will not be enough to keep the high flying Lightning from lighting up the Caps. Lightning in 6
- No. 2 Philadelphia vs. No. 3 Boston. Both teams barely survived the opening round. Both were mentioned as preseason Cup favourites but both have shown significant chinks in their armour. The Flyers in net and Bruins in the anemic special teams. This will probably be another long/epic series, much like last year with a similar outcome, although for bruins fans' sake hopefully not another epic collapse. Flyers in 7