Tuesday, April 30, 2013

2013 Divisional Quarter Finals- Predictions

1) The most exciting time of year is upon us. The Stanley Cup Playoffs! The premiere tournament in ALL of team sports. We will go through each of the 8 opening round series. Predict the winner and the number of games it may take to achieve the results as well as discuss some of the factors that resulted in our prediction.

First The East:

(1) Pittsburgh Penguins-VS- (8) NY Islanders: Yes, this is a first round bye for the Pens. Sorry Islander fans, despite your teams excellent March /mid April run they are not in the same league as the mighty Pens who were blowing teams away without Malkin/Crosby/Letang/Neal  The pens have been eliminated in the first round the past 2 seasons so they won't be taking this round lightly. With the late season additions of  Jarome Iginla, Brenden Morrow and Douglas Murray the Penguins are loaded and will roll over the Isles.  Penguins in 4

(2) Montreal Canadiens-VS- (7) Ottawa Senators: The premiere series of the 4 Eastern sets.  The battle of Canada. Despite the seeding we feel the Senators should be looked upon as  the favourites in this series. However, by no means will it be a cake walk, and if price steps up, it could go the other way. The Sens got the 7th seed despite a rash of injuries that would have sunk most teams. Karlsson, Anderson and Jared Cowen have all healed in time for the playoffs, so we feel that they really are as good if not a better team that the Habs right now who stumbled the last few weeks.  Senators in 6

 (3) Washington Capitals-VS- (6) NY Rangers: Again?!?  Yes.  However, despite the fact that the teams played last season, both teams have a vastly different feel going into this series. Caps are back to the run and gun, and the Rangers are no longer the miserly, block shots and goaltending of The King. They have been quite ordinary(other than Lundqvist) this season and despite adding Nash, they continue to have trouble scoring.  Amazingly Ovechkin quickly resumed his Hart- candidate, Richard type production to propel the caps back atop the South-Least Division.  It will likely come down to one or two OT games, but with the home ice this time around we believe the caps will prevail this time. Capitals in 7  

(4) Boston Bruins-VS- (5) Toronto Maple Leafs:  The only all-Original Six match-up of the first round, although they haven't seen each other in the playoffs almost 40 years.  Unusually, this 4-5 match up will NOT be as close as those sees usually produce. We feel that despite the proximity in the standings, the teams are worlds apart in talent and playoff experience. Also don't discount the 'Kessel trade' factor, as we will see Sequin and Hamilton-vs- Kessel show why the B's won that trade hands down. The Bruins have posted a 15-4-3 record over the Leafs since the two teams completed the trade to send Phil Kessel to Toronto. Although we laud the job Randy Carlyle did to get this team to end nine long years of suffering, we feel they are no match for Claude Julien's teams.  Bruins in 5 


(1) Chicago Black Hawks-VS- (8) Minnesota Wild: The Wild slipped into the final playoff spot on the final day of the season. Their reward?  They get to play the power house Black Hawks who haven't had one bad stretch all season.  It will take a monumental effort from Niklas Backstrom to keep the games and series close, but we don't see it happening. Perhaps the Wild can steal 1, but with their anemic attack and the Hawks tremendous  host of offensive weapons with  Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane and Marian Hossa, great defense and sound goaltending, this will be the West's version of a First Round Bye.  Black Hawks in 4

(2) Anaheim Ducks-VS- (7) Detroit Red Wings: Many are  predicting an 'upset' here, but would it really be?  Had we said in the preseason that the Wings would beat the Ducks in the 1st round who would have been shocked? That being said we don't think the Wings have that mystique they once possessed. While we're not big Boudreau fans, he has his team playing well and probably good enough to survive a first round. It doesn't hurt when you can boast one of the strongest goaltending tandems in the NHL with Viktor Fasth and Jonas Hiller. We think the combo of Getzlaf, Perry and Ryan will out duel Zetterberg, Datsyuk and Franzen.  Ducks in 6

(3) Vancouver Canucks-VS- (6) San Jose Sharks: HERE is where we expect an upset(if it can be called one.  Two teams that usually underwhelm in the post season(especially SJ).  We believe with the Luongo/Schneider situation still simmering. To muddy the waters more Schneider may not be healthy propelling Luongo as the starter. Would be interesting if Roberto played stellar and won the series.However we don't foresee that and more importantly the Sharks play better as the under dog so we expect to see the 3rd seed in the West disposed of early.  Sharks in 5

(4) St. Louis Blues-VS- (5) Los Angles Kings: A typical 4-5 match and should be the closest of the 4 West series. Just one point separated the two teams in the standings, and the teams' goals-for and goals-against totals  differed by four and three respectively After rough starts the Blues and Kings came on the last 2 months to grab the 4th and 5th seeds.   The Blues will look to exact revenge as the Kings swept the Blues last season in the second round. Both teams well coached, with Ken Hitchcock squad of course  playing responsible, two-way hockey and Sutter's crew  has a line-up that is nearly identical to the 2012 Champions so probably it will come down to an OT or even 2 to decide the fate of this series.  We give the nod to the Blues only because of the home ice advantage.  Blues in 7


Crazee Canucklehead said...

LOL...what if you had a blog that noone read? How long would you blog for? Well apparently until April 30th LOL! The Blog that never was dies again! Can't wait to hear the explanation this time!


1) Crazee(Nutz) Maybe your parents took your computer away again and you haven't been reading the past couple of months?? LOL
2) This blog(now coming up to its 7th Birthday) will continue. Thanks for reading. :)

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