I only did the western conference going 2-2. I picked Calgary and they came just a bit short, and Anaheim shocked everybody except Dallas.
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Anyways.. Round 2 Predictions. Just noticed that the first, second, fifth and sixth seeds advanced in each conference. These have got to be some of the best second round matchups I have seen in quite a while.
1. Detroit vs 6. Colorado
This is going to be a great matchup. Two teams with a great playoff history, with a few new faces. Datsyuk and Zetterberg will once again be the go to guys, and they will most likely get to see a lot of Adam Foote (Marian Gaborik gets 1 assist the whole series) for most of the series . Detroit was able to survive Dan Ellis who was remarkable in goal, and they are once again going to face a hot goalie in Theodore. Colorado has the offensive depth, but counter it with Detroits defensive depth and experience and its a draw. The big question will be Hasek or Osgood for Detroit (someone correct me if they are sticking with osgood from now on), and will Theodore be able a difference maker like that of Dan Ellis but come out on the winning side. All aside, this will be a great series.
WINNER: DETROIT Zetterberg and Datsyuk show they are dominant players not only in the regular season but also in the playoffs.
2. San Jose vs. 5. Dallas
WHAt! The stanley cup champion ducks were destroyed by the stars. Even though the series was 6 games, it was obvious after game 2 that the ducks weren't going to come back. Amazing goaltending by turco two years in a row has solidified himself as a playoff goalie, but Joe thornton has also silenced his critics with 7 points in the series. San Jose has seemed to be a jekyl and hyde team in the playoffs so far and even within a game (see 4-3 loss to the flames with a 3-0 lead). Perhaps the sharks are human after having an unbelievable run after the trade deadline. Roenick seemed like a man possessed, and I think the Sharks will be fired up and have the fresher legs for the beginning of this series. Itll be too little to late despite an upset (if you can call a fifth seed beating a fourth seed an upset) against the Ducks for the Stars. Sorry Turco, it wont be your year again...
WINNER: SAN JOSE Yes the team I picked to get upset by the flames gots its wake up call and you wont catch Joe Thornton napping anytime in this series.
1. Montreal vs 6. Philidelphia
The habitant are moving on, and for some reason the flyers were viewed as an underdog against the capitals, something which still baffles me. Nonetheless, a few shaky starts by Price got the media to worry, but he silenced the critics in Game 7. The Kostitsyn brothers have been having a great playoff, while Koivu has 6 points in 2 games! Philadelphia had the best sniper in the playoffs so far, with Briere notching 6 goals, as well as getting 5 assists thanks to some chemistry with Vaclav Prospal ( who woulda thunk it). Both teams ahave a plethora of forwards who can put it in the net. Montreal has the edge in defensive skill, but Philly has the edge in defensive grit. Price and Biron have both been inconsistent, and it is a matter of which masked men can make the clutch save and then not let in a soft goal.
WINNER: THE CITY OF BROTHERLY LOVE Philidelphia will stun the Canadiens. Briere will continue his hot play, and Richards and Carter will make other GMS wonder why the let Philly land such great talent in the same draft in the same round.
2. Pittsburgh vs 5. Rangers
No offence to the Pens, but the senators have been a joke since january. Despite the play of gerber, there wasnt much playoff hockey from the sens. The penguins have a powerplay unit that can punish, and Evegeni Malkin and Sykora have been a dyanamic duo that single handedly could have destroyed Ottawa. Add in Crosby and Hossa and the Rangers defence will be really busy. That shouldnt bother them as they won the season series, and they have some own weapons of their own, with the emergence of dubinsky and ...... Sean avery? Drury, Gomez, Shanahan, and Jagr have the stanely cup experience, as opposed to the young pittsburgh crew who is still young when it comes to the post season. Lundqvist and Fleury have both been great, but Fleury will now have to face an actual first line and be facing the best defensive team in the east, so it will be crucial that he continues play with his newfound confidence that may have come from some white pads.
WINNER: THE BIG APPLE Chris Drury continues the trend of advancing to the conference finals every year of his playoff career!
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