Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Round 2 Predictions

Okay, now that round 1 is over and it's already official I won't do as well this year as last year (I was wrong with only 1 series in all of last year's playoffs), it's time to move on to round 2. Here's my pics:

Eastern Conference

Montreal vs Philadelphia - I watched a good chunk of the Flyers/Caps series, and in particular that game 7 in which the Capitals were flat out robbed by some absolutely horrible officiating. The Flyers were clearly outplayed by a younger, more enthusiastic Capitals team, but found themselves on the winning side of the series due more to luck than anything else (IMHO). And that was against an (at-best) average Capitals team. Montreal looked rock solid in all but 2 of the games against Boston (the execptions being #5 and #6 where they really looked tentative). They're young, but unlike the Capitals they are a much more complete team, and are coming off of a very strong performance in game 7 against Boston. I don't think this one's even going to be close. If there's a sweep in round 2, this will be it. My prediction: Montreal in 4.

Pittsburgh vs New York - Wow, how about that Malkin guy eh? Sidney who? ;) Okay okay, maybe that's a bit of an exaggeration, but right now the Pens look like the team to beat in the East. Everybody knew the offense would be there, but Fleury looked absolutely rock-solid in net and goaltending was the biggest question mark about this team going into the post-season. If Fleury can keep it up, the Pens could very easily go all the way this year. New York played very well against a completely flat New Jersey team, but they are an aging team, and I don't think they have the depth, enthusiasm, or determination to get past the Pens. My prediction: Pittsburgh in 6.

Western Conference

Detroit vs Colorado - DING! Fight! This should be the best series of round 2. These two teams have history going back a long ways, and it's the first time they've met in the post-season in a long time. A lot of people are looking at Detroit as the clear favourite, but I actually think this series is quite close. Colorado looked very good disposing of Minnesota, and Detroit looked quite shaky at times vs Nashville. This one may very well come down to goaltending, and I don't think there's any question that the Avs have the edge in that regard. Should be close, but my prediction: Colorado in 7.

San Jose vs Dallas - This one's also pretty tough to call. San Jose looked very vulnerable against a gritty Calgary team in round 1, and Joe Thornton played well in game 7, but was almost invisible for the rest of the series. Dallas on the other hand surprised many with their "upset" of the defending Stanley Cup champs. Really close series, but San Jose is still my pick to go all the way. My prediction: San Jose in 7.

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