This is how it’s gonna be

- April 11th, 2012

First round predictions by myself and Bruce…I’ll cut and paste his in at the top – ladies before gentlemen – then write mine at the bottom.

East Conference

Senators over Rangers in 7: Don will pick the opposite. I’m sticking with the Local Heroes. Craig Anderson has to be spectacular but the Senators can get this done. Rangers are ripe for an upset.

Bruins over Capitals in 6: I don’t think Dale Hunter’s NHL stay is going to last long. He doesn’t look happy behind the bench. My guess is Zdeno Chara shuts down Alex Ovechkin, bigtime.

Penguins over Flyers in 7: This is the toughest one to call. Going to be a tough, physical battle. Penguins have the skill to get this done. Too bad one team has to go.

Devils over Panthers in 6: This could be a first round upset if you can call it that. Panthers are well-coached by Kevin Dineen and Craig Ramsay, just not that good.

West Conference
Kings over Canucks in 6: This might be wishful thinking because I can’t stand the fans of the Canucks and GM Mike Gillis. No Daniel Sedin will hurt. Would love to see these guys choke in first round.

Chicago over Phoenix in 5: The ownerless team is a nice story but I think the Hawks will do a better job scoring than the Coyotes. Goaltending here is a toss-up.

Blues over Sharks in 6; Ken Hitchcock isn’t kidding himself by starting Jaroslav Halak. The Blues know Brian Elliott – injured or not – can’t handle playoff pressure. Sharks just haven’t gotten it done.

Predators over Wings in 7: One series has to go the distance. Wings could be in tough. I gotta stick with Preds cause I picked them go to the final against the Penguins. Nashville has my support.

Okay Bruce, thanks for comin’ ….
This is how I’m leaning:

Rangers over Senators in 7: I almost always go with the better goalie in a close series
Bruins over Capitals in 4: Dale Hunter will be way in over his head.
Penguins over Flyers in 6: I don’t know… how about because Crosby is rested?
Devils over Panthers in 4: If the Devils had a better ‘D’, I could see them going a long way.

Kings over Canucks in 7: This one smells like the biggest first round upset to me. I’ll change that to 5 games if D. Sedin isn’t able to go.

Coyotes over Hawks in 6: Coaching and injuries (unless Toews plays) swing this one to the desert dogs.

Blues over Sharks in 5: Remember what Halak did for Montreal a couple of years ago?

Predators over Wings in 6: They traded a first for a Paul Gaustad. They better win.

I see now that we had similar picks. Must mean it’s safe for you people to make some wagers

Categories: Hockey

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10 comments

  1. Bobby Goodman says:

    Rangers over Senators in 6:

    Bruins over Capitals in 5: Captials have issues and goaltending is only one of them.
    .
    Penguins over Flyers in 6: Deeper, stronger, better (but damn Philly has some heart(

    Devils over Panthers in 6:

    Kings over Canucks in 6: In spite of what some say (including “yorks”, Carter makes a difference)

    Hawks over Coyotes in 6: Deeper, stronger, better.

    Blues over Sharks in 5: Not flashy but hot damn, they are playing tough (swan song for Doogie in San Jose)

    Predators over Wings in 6: Always go for the best goaltender…youth, speed, skill, coaching, defence, etc. etc. etc. Maybe someday, the pundits will relfect on what Trotz has done with Nashville over the years.

  2. Visitor - Pierre D. says:

    Although I am not drinking the Murray Kool Aid about Szilfverberg (who cares how many SEL baubles you have, they mean SQUAT in the NHl and NHL playoffs!) and Zibanejad (looks scared in the SEL, what will he do here??) I do agree with Bruce (and why shouldn’t I, he’s basically the voice of reason, experience and extrtemely tuned in to the league’s pulse as well!) that the Senators have this, in FIVE games. The Rangers are vastly overrated!

    I cheered and cheered when Vancouver lost and yes, THANK YOU KINGS for doing so. Bunch of DIVERS, WHINERS and Luongo is terrible overrated. Yeah, Karlsson does embellis hand I hate that and hope he grows out of it…but dear lord.

    Have fun tonight in NY boys!! And remember, you’ll need to chaperone Gordie and Voice and the rest, seeing the Sun Boys are the most mature of the bunch!

  3. Bobby Goodman says:

    Potvin said that Spezza had a tough night (as did Bruce) and I guess he did (the Rangers themselves they would be in his face all game long) but he/they neglected to talk about Alfredsson’s -2, Foligno’s -2 and Turris’ -1…why? As a line they were minus 5…but not a word is said…why is that? Is it heresy to point out a fact? He didn’t mention Cowen’s -3 either. Neither did the Ottawa Sun. Why is that? He didn’t mention Karly’s game at all…why is that? We got to see his terrific speed but like the last month of the season, it was coming back to recover from a mistake. His passes were way off too but that is what happens when you are thinking about getting hit. Yes Potvin he made a point of including Spezza’s tough night along with Kuba and Gonchar (who were awful and according to all the pundits, the defence was going to the Sen’s strength…but defencemen defend, block shots and hit people). If not for Spezza’s gift to Alfredsson, the Captain would have been -3 for the evening. What could be if Milan and Jason had a hockey player on their line because again, Greening was just God awful all night. To him, the bisquite is a foreign object that actually makes him fall. Again, I didn’t see any punishing checks from the 6′, 5″ 230 pound Cowen and he isn’t fleet of foot. I know if Carkner was in the lineup, he would have made Boyle pay for the nuggies on Karlie.

  4. Bobby Goodman says:

    Pierre mon ami, I don’t cheer Vancouver losing. As Canadians we have only two teams in the post season. I will hope for one and cheer for both. More than half of all the 30 NHL teams qualify for the post season so you only have to be mediocer to get in! 2012 was not a good one for most Canadian teams. Although one of the 2 going in to the playoffs won the President’s Trophy the other who made it by the skin of their teeth. I would never hope for an American Team over a Canadian Team (not even Toronto). I suspect most teams have a player in the lineup that are not likable. Most loved Ruutu whyen he played here in Ottawa (I didn’t); he chirped, he dove, he posted that silly-ass grin, but he never engaged! How is that any different from what Lapierre does? How can a team be characterized by one or two players? Isn’t Bieksa a stand-up guy? Do the Sedin’s dive and chirp. Depending on the day and who you may talk to, there are a few teams who are described as the most despised team in hockey! I love a bunch on the ‘Nucks team including: Sedins, Bieksa, Edler, Salo, Burroughs, Kesler, Raymond, Ballard, Hamsuis, Hansen, Kassian and others (I never, ever liked Lapierre). I just don’ t get the hate-on for Vancouver. It is almost like once it begins, it gathers momentum and everyone jumps on the bandwagon which happens of course and there is ample proof of that: the reputation Zetterburg and Lidstrom enjoy, Karlie for Norris, Aflredsson to replace Jesus (“praise Alfie”), Tortarella great coach, Sutters make outstanding Coaches and GMs, Lorde Burke brilliant hockey executive, Shannahan brilliant NHL executive, Yzerman brilliant hockey executive, desperation to get Gretzky back in the NHL because “the game needs him” and I can go on and on. I hope Vancouver win their series against San Jose and they may not, but indeed they should. It is shameful that they don’t get support from the own country men and women.

    It is interesting to note that the Sens gave up the puck (Gva) 8 times to NYR’s 3. What does this traditionally mean when you see a discrepancy like this? It is usally associated with one team coming hard and the other team feeling pressured (I am being polite here) so they invariably throw the puck aimlessly away.

    If a player is not going to score goals, he needs to bring something more to the party (speed, fear, physicality). Daisey only hit someone when he followed them into a corner (his MO). I like Smith with Neil and thought the “Android” would work out well on the wing but he did diddly! Like the other star Butler, he spent more time on his butt than on his blades and he didn’t punish anyone. Obrien doesn’t intimidate/fight, doesn’t score, doesn’t punish the body so why is he in the lineup? The team really needs Neil and Smith and dumb penalties are inexcusable. Play Carkner! Think about Petersson! The Missing Klink, although not very good, is better than a Dog. I would even bring up BoroCop a young Canadian boy with a…

  5. Visitor - Pierre D. says:

    Bobby, could not disagree with you MORE.

    You don’t cheer for a team because they are Canadian…do you think Islanders fans are cheering for the Rangers? Or that Wings fans will rally behind Nashville or New York if they are eliminated? Hell no! This “Canadian team/Canada’s team” is a conceit from an insecure fan base or populace. I am a SENS fan and I cheer for my SENS, despite my obvious dislike for some of our players like Karlsson the Punching Bag.

    If you watched Vancouver you would get it. Kesler diving left and right. Alexandre Burrows biting people. Sedins getting their faces punched in by Lucic and not saying a word, Luongo allowing back-breaking goals every two periods then whining about Thomas getting his “tires pumped”. Can not stand them. I hope they get humbled again this year, whether it’s by the Kings or Detroit. Impossible to love those guys! And from their own countrymates? Maybe if they had a team with a majority of Canadians I could do that.

    I called the Sens in five, must have been drunk but it’s been written.

    Once again we see Murray’s idiotic “WE don’t block shots because other teams are blocking them” to be woefully detached from the reality of playoff play. The Rangers were blocking shots left and right and what did our “D” do? NOTHING. Brad Richards with Gonchar turned to him walks in and slaps it. Richards AGAIN storming in and Erik Karlsson holding his stick parallel to the ice and observing while Kuba shies away. Gaborik in close, no defensive coverage. And now we have Mr. Pringles/Wilford Bnmley saying “We played good for 54 minutes.” Did you?

    Here is the 60 minute game I saw Mustache-Man:

    Drop of the puck, Callahan is a wrecking ball hitting people left and right and scoring a goal.
    Brian Boyle gets into a tiff with Princess Karlsson (gawd I DETEST this player, he is the antithesis of Alfredsson’s work ethic and hard-edged play) gets his face punched in a dozen times, shameful!
    Spezza completely invisible for 2/3rds of the game, McDonagh and Girardi took his balls and now he’s gone home crying…oh but he got his candy in a late-game assist so he won’t cry to Murray this week..
    Anderson was brutal. Two of those goals never should have gone in. Gord Wilson said Anderson has nothing to prove…spoken like someone that has never won a thing. Andreson has won NOTHING. And if this team is going to win SOMETHING he needs to make some damned saves!

    Kyle Turris is average and if Alfredsson wasn’t anchoring is line would look like Mike Comrie.
    Michalek completely invisible.

    This team needs more than Klink and Carks…it needs MEN at all positions, guys that will push back and play with some MEANNESS and SNARL in the playoffs. We have had that only in spurts in this franchises’s life and haven’t since.

    Once again, hopeful they can win ONE game Saturday because if they go down 0-2…not liking New York getting a split in Ottawa and then out in five, brutal.

    Oh yeah,…

  6. Visitor - Pierre D. says:

    Got cut off but…

    Oh yeah…Senators were not expected to make playoffs, picked last this year, overachieviing, a young team, bla bla bla if they didn’t want playoff-level play why did they get our hopes up by qualifying?

  7. Daniel Murphy says:

    As per my earlier blog, what is the game plan for the Sens if Anderson does not provide playoff quality goal-tending? It is getting a bit redundant to keep hearing that so and so was -2 and so and so was +2 etc…

    Do we sink or swim with Anderson all the way or do we give Bishop a chance if Anderson falters?

    Sens didn’t look to bad last night but the difference was Lundqvist who made the big saves when needed while Anderson didn’t. That my friends is the difference when it comes to playoff hockey.

  8. Mike8888 says:

    I believed before yesterday’s game that Carkner should have been dressed over Gilroy. After the score was 4-0 for the Rangers, why didn’t someone on the Sen’s make Boyle pay for roughing up Karlsson? Or, why didn’t someone go after the Ranger’s Gaborik or Richards as pay back. Anyways, the Sen’s got abosolutely no puck luck last night and if they play even slightly better then last night, they can still win this series.

  9. Mike8888 says:

    Also, the Sen’s should dress Konopka and Klinkhammer to get some more size and hitting into the line up. They can sit the dog and O’Brien. It’s not like they will miss their scoring.

  10. Bobby Goodman says:

    Pierre, mon ami…it is fine to completely disagree with me and don’t it make for great dialogue? I love it…but… your opinion is wrong of course! I watched Vancouver and I get it! I just don’t get what they all are sayin’. I don’t see Kesler diving all over the place. I really like Alexandre Burrows and if someone kept putting their mits in my mouth, hell, I would bite too! Swedes are a special bunch. They can wear anything, dress like Herb Tarlik and be called fashionable. They don’t hit anyone and when they get hit many go down for the count, check to see if the ref is looking but never miss a shift (Karlie anyone?). The Sedins aren’t physical, never were and never will be but damn they are sweet to watch in a regular season game. I think Luongo is over-rated too but I don’t hate em. There are a bunch on the team I really like and only dislike one, LaPierre. Las Angeles over Vancouver…I love a bunch on LA (especially Doughty) but I will cheer for a team from the Great White North mon vieux!

    I disagree with you on Turris. This kid tries hard every game and ever shift and when he puts on a few pounds of muscle and gets stronger I suspect he will be even better. He doesn’t shy away from the heavy lifting and his is slight at 6-1 185 (very similar to Karlie). Spezza was invisible in game two, check that, he was very visible because he was very bad! But, in game one, he put the puck on Afredsson’s stick for a gift and his line was plus one to Alfresson’s line of him, Turris and Foligno’s aggregate of minus 5! The behometh Cowen, despite registering many hits this year, doesn’t hurt/punish anyone and he was -3 the first game.

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