#1 Washington Capitals vs. #5 Tampa Bay Lightning: My Pick, Lightning in 6. Reality, Lightning in 4.
How sweep it is, Part I. This one was a case of the Caps simply not being able to deal with two people. The first was Dwayne Roloson who had himself a very strong series against the Caps, and continued his strong play against them (2.11 GAA vs. the Caps in the Regular season.) The second was the unexpected offense of Sean Bergenheim, 4 goals against the Caps in this series, and 7 in the first 2 series, after scoring 14 goals during the regular season. The Capitals had some offense, and their goal-tending wasn’t bad, but the Lightning were simply the better. So much for Ovie putting up any fight before this thing ended.
#2 Philadelphia Flyers vs. #3 Boston Bruins: My Pick, Bruins in 7. Reality, Bruins is 4.
How sweep it is, Part II. This cynical Rangers fan saw a Flyers team that had made the finals the previous year giving the Bruins fits all the way to a game 7. The Bruins outscored the Flyers 20-7 over the 4 games. The Flyers could not get out of their own way, from poor coaching decisions like starting Boucher for games 2 and 3, after getting his ass torched by the Bruins in Game 1, to having only one player(James van Riemsdyk) on the team that scored the most goals in the Eastern conference be able to put more than one goal on the board… for the series. The Flyers played like they didn’t deserve to be there.
#1 Vancouver Canucks vs. #5 Nashville Predators; My Pick: Canucks in 6. Reality, Canucks in 6.
The games went pretty much like I thought they would, tight games, because these guys never blow anyone away, but they always seem to win in the end. An that’s exactly what they did against the Preds. Played them hard, played tight defensive hockey (No 5-1 or 7-3 blowouts with this team) get some timely goals by Kesler and the Sedin twins, and walk away with another series win. The Preds are no pushover team, and they really played some smart hockey, but good goaltending and timely O made this one look relatively easy.
#2 San Jose Sharks vs. #3 Detroit Red Wings; My Pick; Red Wings in 6. Reality, Sharks in 7.
Stunned am I that the Wings did not advance, thought they did make it interesting. Lose three in a row, then stage a hellacious comeback to tie the series, where they had to fight tooth and nail in each game just to stave off elimination, only to loose a tight one at the Shark tank to a Sharks team determined to redeem themselves, after failing to get to the promised land after many attempts. Didn’t get to see enough of this series, dammit.
Viddy of the day: Moment of Silence for Derek Boogaard 5/14/11
ON WITH THE INACCURACY!
Despite a game one beat-down by the Lightning I think the Bruins are going all the way to The Stanley Cup finals. That game one beat-down, was, I think, more a result of the Bruins weak play in front of Tim Thomas than anything else, and that will not continue. And without a 3 goal spurt by the Lightning, a result of a team wide 90 second long brain fart, this game goes much differently.
Expect much more disciplined play from the B’s from here. The lightning are a great team, and deserve to be here, but Roloson and the rest will have their hands full keeping a now angry Bruins team down.
#1 Vancouver Canucks vs. #2 San Jose Sharks My Pick: Sharks in 7.
As much as I think that this Canucks team is perhaps the best team this organization has ever put on the ice, and that is saying something, that team that made the 1994 Finals was an impressive collection of players, I don’t think they are quite as good as the Sharks. That has very much to do with the depth of scoring this Sharks team has at it’s disposal. Couture, Setoguchi, Marleau, Heatley, Pavelski, Thornton. There are simply too many options that can light the lamp for this Sharks team.
Not that the Canucks don’t have scorers, but they simply don’t have as many, and I don’t think they’ll win this shootout. Plus Niemi, the Sharks Goalie has already proven, in last years Stanley cup finals with the Blackhawks, to be clutch, and he will provide that clutch performance for his new Sharks teammates.
Count on it.
That’s it from here, America. G’night.