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Victoria, BC • Canada • 2013 Years Old • Male

2007-08 Predictions

Posted 2:51 AM ET | Comments 29
1) New York Rangers (110)
2) Ottawa Senators (107)
3) Atlanta Thrashers (99)
4) Pittsburgh Penguins (108)
5) Buffalo Sabres (104)
6) New Jersey Devils (98)
7) Toronto Maple Leafs (95)
8) Philadelphia Flyers (93)
9) Carolina Hurricanes (92)
10) Montreal Canadiens (91)
11) Tampa Bay Lightning (86)
12) Florida Panthers (83)
13) New York Islanders (77)
14) Boston Bruins (70)
15) Washington Capitals (66)

1) Detroit Red Wings (113)
2) Anaheim Ducks (112)
3) Colorado Avalanche (106)
4) San Jose Sharks (108)
5) Vancouver Canucks (105)
6) Calgary Flames (104)
7) Minnesota Wild (101)
8) St. Louis Blues (94)
9) Nashville Predators (92)
10) Los Angeles Kings (89)
11) Dallas Stars (85)
12) Edmonton Oilers (76)
13) Chicago Blackhawks (74)
14) Columbus Blue Jackets (68)
15) Phoenix Coyotes (63)

EASTERN FINAL: Pittsburgh Penguins over New York Rangers
WESTERN FINAL: Anaheim Ducks over San Jose Sharks
STANLEY CUP FINAL: Anaheim Ducks over Pittsburgh Penguins

Am I sure about these? Well, apart from Phoenix finishing dead f**king last, not really. Predictions are a hard thing to make, especially when things such as injuries, which no one can predict, play a major factor. Some team survive the test of injuries, others falter.

My reasoning for picking Anaheim as the repeat champion is twofold. For one thing, Anaheim, unlike some past Cup champions, has not regressed. Unlike the Lightning losing Nikolai Khabibulin in 2004, or Dominik Hasek retiring from the Red Wings in 2002, the Ducks have maintained their core of players that made them successful. What's more, this Anaheim squad has performed with tenacity and grit that, unlike their Raleigh predecessors, won't cause a post-Cup hangover that will result in a long golf season.

Sad as I am to admit to it, given how much I despise the guy, the addition of Todd Bertuzzi, should he remain healthy, is a good pickup for a team that uses its physical play as a winning formula. Such play overwhelmed the likes of Minnesota, Vancouver, Detroit, and Ottawa last season, and should continue to stymie opponents this season. On defense, with no retirement announcement from Scott Niedermayer as of yet, the addition of Matthieu Schneider means that, in Niedermayer, Chris Pronger, Francois Beauchemin, and Scheneider, there is no doubt that the Ducks boast not only the best top defensive pairing, but greatest depth, among D in the NHL.

On the Eastern coin, there is no doubt in my mind that the two best teams in the conference are the Atlantic adversaries in Manhattan and Western Pennsylvania. During the 82-game season, the Blueshirts should claim dominance, mainly due to their stacked offense, and solid netminding in Henrik Lundqvist, who is irrefutably a Top 5 goalie in the league. Their weakness, however, lies in defense, and that weakness will be something the dynamic Penguins will exploit in a best-of-seven series down the stretch. While I think the likes of Michal Roszival and Paul Mara are greatly underrated, and the addition of Marc Staal will greatly improve the Rangers D, I don't think they, or the other three blueliners, have what it takes to hold off one of the league's most explosive offenses.

And that's how I see it unfolding this season.
August 21, 2007 9:51 AM ET | Delete
Do the ducks maintain thier core if Nieds and Selanne Retire?
August 21, 2007 9:52 AM ET | Delete
what about if Nieds and selanne retire? Is the ducks core kept?
August 21, 2007 10:05 AM ET | Delete
I like this prediction. Unbiased, and accurate. I especially like the Avs in third place :D lol. If Budaj can play very solid, who knows..
August 21, 2007 10:05 AM ET | Delete
Nice blog. I question how NJ is going to amass 98 points when they have lost so much this off season? I know they have a guy named Brodeur and yes he will steal some games just because he is who he is....BUT how will they score? Rafalski and Gomez are gone. Elias is a year older and is a question mark as to how his game will be. Gionta is a very good player. I just do not see them being as dominant as they have been in the past few years. The rest of the east has gotten stronger and they have - in my opinion - gotten weaker. It will be interesting to see how it shakes out. Nice blog!SYF
August 21, 2007 10:18 AM ET | Delete
not bad but i think the caps are gonna turn some heads this year! watch
August 21, 2007 10:56 AM ET | Delete
Florida with 3 less points than last year with more offensive depth and Vokoun instead of Auld and Belfour?
August 21, 2007 11:08 AM ET | Delete
This is why I hate predictions.
August 21, 2007 11:08 AM ET | Delete
Oh, NJ with 98 points...called Brodeur.
August 21, 2007 11:23 AM ET | Delete
NJ will not finish with 98 points. Pens do not make the Cup final!
August 21, 2007 11:38 AM ET | Delete
I agree, I am calling NJ out of the playoffs for next season. Brodeur is already popping viagara and chasing it with a tall glass of metamucil. The guy is getting old, and definitely getting overrated. And there is no way in hell Anaheim will repeat. Every team in the league has got a big red bullseye on them.
August 21, 2007 11:50 AM ET | Delete
Very funkadelicly done, Leafer! Liking the boldness of putting Blues ahead of Nashville.
August 21, 2007 11:55 AM ET | Delete
yea this makes a lot of sense...washington goes out and gets nylander, poti and kozlov to make the team that much better, but you have them LAST in the conference and with less points than the last two seasons? wow. and what exactly has toronto done to propel them into the playoffs? Jason Blake? he'll put up bout 25-30 goals max and you still won't have a second line that can score. unbiased my a*s.
August 21, 2007 12:09 PM ET | Delete
It's a little too early to predicting anything about the Ducks until we know if Selanne and Niedermayer are going to play or retire. If they are both back they'll be good again but if they both retire combined with the loss of Penner that's a good chunk of their offense and leadership that will be tough to replace.
August 21, 2007 12:19 PM ET | Delete
32 games against divisional teams, it is not likely four atlantic teams make the playoffs and only one southeast
August 21, 2007 1:24 PM ET | Delete
Ok just curious but... why is Dallas so far down on your list? Do ya really think they'll blow it that bad this coming season? No judgement here... just honest curiousity. :)
August 21, 2007 1:28 PM ET | Delete
Oh yea, Leafer..... keep in mind the Ducks could lose Neids and Selanne..
August 21, 2007 1:46 PM ET | Delete
It's tough to make a prediction like this with any kind of certainty. I'd like to see a post where each team is sort of given a report card of their strengths and an assessment of how their post-season has improved/weakened their squad. I don't disagree with any of your rankings completely BUT, there are always 1 or 2 teams that surprise the hell out of everyone.
August 21, 2007 1:46 PM ET | Delete
Ottawa will not take the East ... Despite losing Briere and Drury ... We now have a healthy Tim Connolly , and Drew Stafford is now a full timer. You may not be able to replace some of the intangibles those two brought to the Sabs , but I am confident we will take the division again. To all the naysayers , you must have missed that long stretch of the season when almost our entire team was decimated by injury .... and what happened there ? We never lost control of the Conference.
August 21, 2007 2:14 PM ET | Delete
Mark my words, Predators will make the playoffs.
August 21, 2007 2:16 PM ET | Delete
I think the Panthers fan is right, Florida will be better this year and could contend for a playoff spot. I think Philly is over hyped and won't make the playoffs, and I think Carolina bounces back and wins that division. Good blog though.
August 21, 2007 2:20 PM ET | Delete
Hey Tconn, I'm a Sabres fan too but Ottawa outclassed us in the playoffs and that was when we had Briere and Drury. When we were hurting we only were missing Drury for 5 games and Briere missed just one. We lose our two best players and add nothing it spells trouble. We'll make the playoffs, but Ottawa is clearly the class of the NE.
August 21, 2007 3:14 PM ET | Delete
Nice post. I hope you are right about ATL with 99...my heart says yes but my head says no way.
August 21, 2007 3:37 PM ET | Delete
your dreamin again mr leaf's fan - but all leaf fans do dream b/c thats all they have left. but really now, great post - i like it. loads of effort went into this.I think Philly could actually win the ECF this year, but it might be Pitts or Ottawa. Leafs won't make the palyoffs with their current roster - you need to make a deal and add 1-2 impact players. How will the russian perform in net under the strong toronto spotlight? I see Tampa taking TO's spot on that list. Also, i think your bang-on wrt to Atlanta. They're ready to break out - not ready for post season success though.Ottawa will win their second ECF in 2007-2008!
August 21, 2007 3:39 PM ET | Delete
I don't think the Devils make the post season. Florida will win their division and finish 3rd in the conference. 6th-8th will be a dogfight and I think the Isles make it. I know it's a biased opinion but I really think the Isles look better then last year and they will finish 6th.
August 21, 2007 4:16 PM ET | Delete
"Predictions are a hard thing to make, especially when things such as injuries, which no one can predict, play a major factor. Some team survive the test of injuries, others falter." Exactly why predictions are really only good "guesses". When looking back over the years, I think very few predictions actually happen EXACTLY the way they were predicted. I know there were a large number of people who predicted that the Ducks would win the Cup BEFORE the season began, but there were also a large number of people who thought the Blues would finish LAST before the season began as well. It is very difficult to factor injuries in the predictions because no one KNOWS who will get injured or to what extent. Plus there is always that team (or teams) who have unbelievable chemistry and advance far in the playoffs.
August 21, 2007 4:58 PM ET | Delete
I can see that you think, like I do; that 4 teans from the atlantic will make the playoffs
August 21, 2007 9:49 PM ET | Delete
Must state an Islander fan here, but taking the bias out. Is it me or is the hype on the Rangers too much? As of now they don't have or close to a full team and are over the salary cap. Someone's got to go, or are the numbers off (nhlnumbers.com). Or it's managed so close that if someone gets hurt their screwed? What am I missing on this one?
August 21, 2007 9:50 PM ET | Delete
damn it i was hopping for another sharks preditors rematch in the 4 5 place and in the first round. lol can we change it so it will work out again. and i have a feeling that the kings will make the playoffs this yr.
August 22, 2007 12:02 AM ET | Delete
WOW, Montreal is out, but Toronto is in? Montreal finishes 4/5th if their goalie doesn't get hurt, and Dallas is a STRONG team that you have finishing way below.I also don't think NJ makes it with OLD MAN Brodeur playing with a bunch of AHLers in front of him. East will be a lot closer this year.I also think Stars and Kings make it instead of Wild and Blues, and Avs don't come in 3rd, Budaj isn't that good!
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