Well, I was waiting until it was final and now it is. Some fans have a lot to be thankful for - I'm looking at you Vancouver. Others should be crying in their poutine.
Here's my 2010 Stanley Cup Playoff Predictions!
Washington Capitals vs Montreal Canadiens
I hope that Gionta, Gomez and Price have already booked their tee times. There is absolutely no way that Montreal will win this series. And it pains me to say it. I'm a Montreal girl and a Habs fan by birth. I still wear my Stephane Richer jersey when they play the Canucks. But this year's team is no 80s powerhouse. They're rebuilding, in my opinion. A few more years and they'll be a contender, but they aren't ready for the Capitals now.
Let's face it, this Montreal Canadiens team doesn't even deserve to be here. They needed 1 wee little point and they tried their darndest not to get it. At least it felt that way didn't it? I hate Ovechkin and would love to see him shit the bed on this (like he did in the little thing known as the Olympics) but the entire team would have to take a coma-nap and that's not going to happen.
Puck Bunny prediction: Capitals sweep in 4 straight games.
New Jersey Devils vs Philadelphia Flyers
This one is not going to be a blow-out - although it should be. Devils should steam roll over the the Flyers who barely made it in to begin with. But here's the difference between Flyers and say the Habs... the Habs were actually as high as 6th at one point and slipped to 8th. The Flyers battled til the end just to make it at all. The game against the New York Rangers for the last playoff spot was a barn burner! Another thing going for the Flyers is that, sadly, Devils icon Martin Brodeur has proven he's at the end of his glory days (cough-olympics-cough) so the Flyers will be able to get somewhere. Flyers want it and they have the fire. It won't be enough but it will be a better series than Montreal-Washington.
Puck Bunny prediction: Devils win it in 6 games.
Buffalo Sabres vs Boston Bruins
Am I the only Canadian who still has nightmares about Ryan Miller? Didn't think so. But I also fell a little in love with (and in awe of) Tim Thomas as he denied Ovechkin points in the final regular season game (and kept Ovie from winning the Rocket or the Art Ross trophies). These two teams have the best goaltenders in the playoffs. The key is that Boston has 2 of the best goalies in the playoffs and the Sabres only have one. Both Rask and Thomas can handle the Sabres offence. That's what it comes down to. Standings would indicate that the Sabres were better but... I honestly think the Bruins have what it takes for an upset.
Puck Bunny prediction: Bruins take it in 7
Pittsburgh Penguins vs Ottawa Senators
Crosby. It's always going to be Crosby for me. This pick has little to do with stats and much to do with the fact that I think he's the most adorable, sexy, cute, talented boy that ever wore skates. I know - because I hear the voices of more rationale people around me - that the Penguins are struggling this year. That they're not where they need to be. But hello, it's the Senators. Struggle is the Sens' middle name. And they don't have one player that's nearly as hot as Crosby. And when I say "hot" I'm not just talking about his bubble butt and beautiful lips. Sidney scored the shoot out goal against the Swiss, the Gold Medal winning goal in the Olympics and jumped from 49 to 51 goals in his last regular season game to steal the Rocket from Ovechkin. Crosby is a hot player and when the pressure is on, he gets it done.
Puck Bunny prediction: Penguins take it in 5.
San Jose Sharks vs Colorado Avalanche
I want to say that the Avs will upset and take this series. I want to say that Dany Heatley (the Murderer) and the rest of the Sharks (who acted like absolute idiots in the last game they played against the Canucks) will lose - and we all know they have done it before. But I think - unfortunately - they will make it past Colorado. They HAVE to have learned from their mistakes (AKA the last two playoff runs). Plus Dany Heatley is way better at decisions on the ice than he is at deicisions behind the wheel. Add to that the Team Canada brilliance that is Marleau and Thornton and Team USA's Pavelski. These boys now know how to win. Nabokov is having one of his better seasons, although he can meltdown. Nabokov's ability to turtle and the Sharks ability to take really stupid penalties, is the only thing that will keep it interesting.
Puck Bunny prediction: Sharks win it in 6.
Chicago Blackhawks vs Nashville Predators
The Blackhawks have been very consistent this season. They're in it to win it. And quite honestly if they don't they have their goalie issues to blame. But that should hold out long enough to get them past the first round. What will keep it interesting and close (possibly) is Pekka Rinne, the Preds goalie. Rinne a much better goalie than the Hawk's Huet or Niemi but not good enough to hold off Kane and Toews for an entire round.
Puck Bunny prediction: Hawks take it in 5.
Vancouver Canucks vs Los Angeles Kings
Do you even have to ask? Vancouver will win this. And I'm not just saying that as a diehard fan who can't see the truth. I get that the Kings Drew Doughty is a force to be reckoned with. I know Captain Dustin Brown can score. And yes I get that Quick was on his game... most of the season. But this is the playoffs. And Quick hasn't been so quick lately. As a realistic Canucks fan I know they consistently and completely fall asleep in the playoffs. But this year, they decided to fall asleep early... like the last time they played the Kings.. and they've woken up.
The Canucks have never had a season like this - where no matter what they get thrown they come back. I thought the billion week Olympic road trip would kill them, but it didn't. I thought Vingeault would once again coach them into offensive oblivion, but he hasn't.... yet. I thought that Princess Kesler might dissolve into a puddle of tears after losing the Gold to his Captain, but he didn't. They are not the Canucks of yesteryear. These guys can - and will - do it!
Puck Bunny prediction: Canucks win it in 5.
Phoenix Coyotes vs Detroit Red Wings
If this was an Underdog competition -- Phoenix would have already won. They finished the season in the playoffs - with home ice advantage over the Red Wings - Who the hell ever saw this coming? And they're brankrupt right? C'mon who needs the BlindSide? Hollywood needs to make this sports story! But Detroit isn't a one-dimensional Hollywood antgonist. They are, in large part, hockey vetrans who want it BAD. And to be honest I want Bertuzzi to get a Stanley cup and this is his best chance. But I think between Doan's leadership and Bryzgalov's goaltending, Phoenix will defeat Detroit. It won't be easy but the Coyotes have youth and passion and nothing to lose. Are you listening Hollywood?
Puck Bunny prediction: Phoenix takes it in 7.