It's not unusual for a hockey fan to make predictions on how teams will fare in the upcoming season. Heck, in my head, I've come up with how I feel teams will perform. Things aren't always as black and white as we'd like to think they are.
It's impossible to measure how a team will perform based on past performance. There could be a blockbuster trade next week, a key player could go down with a season-threatening injury, and someone could go through a big slump for the majority of the year. It's always nice to think highly of your team, but being a lifelong New York Jets fan and watching Vinny Testaverde go down in the 1999 preseason - predictions mean nothing.
It's all about the intangibles. Guerin-Comrie-Fedotenko may not be the sexiest line the NHL, I'll admit it. Many have ridden them off as the worst top line. Undeniably, they have clicked this preseason and Training Camp. I'm not going to lie, I'm expecting big things from them this season... but just as easily as they succeed they can flop.
Predictions take into account Superstar Players, but rarely take into account how they fit a system. Generally, they also take into account the player's performance last season and ignores any years the player didn't perform well. While I realize that I am going to get killed in the comment section by Leafs' fans for saying this, other than last season, Jason Blake hasn't done anything to warrant the contract he has. Honestly, including last season I would argue that he doesn't warrant the contract but that's for another time and place. Yet, because of one season, he's caused talks of the Leafs' being a Stanley Cup Contender. What's stopping him from having a sub-25 goal season? Just like the Isles' first line, he can just as easily flop as he can succeed.
Whenever a situation is changed (i.e. new team, new line mate, new opponent, etc.) the player's performance will not be the same. Let all of the predictions keep coming in, and I ask those of you who post them to repost the same ones at the end of the season and we can all point and laugh.
Morale of the story: don't get caught up, upset, or angered if your team is predicted to be a bottom feeder. At the same time, don't grow a huge ego if you're predicted to finish at the top. It'll all mean nothing a few weeks from now.