I figure I made some half cocked guesses about the NBA playoffs (that are doing fairly poorly!) so I had better cobble something together with the Stanley Cup playoffs beginning, well, last night. I actually pay close attention to hockey (I had better, what with the whole Barry Melrose Rocks thing) so I feel like I am going to do a little bit better with these hockey projections.
Here are a couple things that are driving my picks. Usually, the NHL playoffs are massive confusion with barely tangential connection to logic or the regular season. Last year, the Los Angeles Kings, an 8th seed in the west ended up winning the Cup by defeating the 6th seeded New Jersey Devils. This year, though, I think they will be a little more true to talent level. There were fewer games so skater talent will continue to be important, rather than simply finding the team with the hottest goalie (it was Jonathan Quick last year). because teams will be fresher.
So let’s see where this postseason is going. Remember, the NHL reseeds teams every round (i.e. the highest remaining seed plays the lowest).
Chicago over Minnesota in 6
Anaheim over Detroit in 5
San Jose over Vancouver in 6
St. Louis over Los Angeles in 7
Pittsburgh over NY Islanders in 5
Montreal over Ottawa in 7
NY Rangers over Washington in 5
Boston over Toronto in 6
Chicago over San Jose in 5
Anaheim over St. Louis in 5
Pittsburgh over NY Rangers in 6
Boston over Montreal in 6
Anaheim over Chicago in 6
Pittsburgh over Boston in 7
Stanley Cup finals
Pittsburgh over Anaheim in 5
Now, of course, we will wait until next week when we realize how wrong I am!