Stanley Cup Prediction

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*Because of lockdown madness, the 2020-21 NHL season will have the four divisions playing against each other in their regions. This is a breakdown of my prediction for the Stanley Cup Playoff participants for the 2020-21 season. The top 4 teams from each division will play each other in the first two rounds. Then what would be the Conference Finals, the four remaining teams will be ranked 1-4 on their regular season point totals. The one-seed will play the fourth-seed and the second-seed will play the third-seed. Continue reading

East Division

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1. Philadelphia Flyers

Last year might not have ended the way they hoped, but they are far too talented to not make another run.

2. Boston Bruins

Their defense took a hit in free agency. Their depth on offense should help offset any issues on the blue line.

3. New York Islanders

The Barry Trotz system is working to near perfection on Long Island.

4. New York Rangers

This is their chance to show a quick turnaround in their rebuild to become contenders.

5. Pittsburgh Penguins

It would be shocking to see them miss the playoffs, but there are too many holes that could be hard to overcome down the stretch.

6. Washington Capitals

The cap crunch is coming and some players are starting to show their age on the ice.

7. Buffalo Sabres

If they weren’t playing in a stacked division like this one, they could be contending for a Wild Card spot.

8. New Jersey Devils

They fell flat on the ice last year and this season won’t be any better for them. Continue reading

Stanley Cup Semifinals Preview

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Eastern Conference

1. Philadelphia Flyers vs. 6. New York Islanders

Players to Watch: G Carter Hart and G Semyon Varlamov

Who Wins: Islanders in 6 games

2. Tampa Bay Lightning vs. 4. Boston Bruins

Players to Watch: F Nikita Kucherov and G Jaroslav Halak

Who Wins: Lightning in 6 games

Western Conference

1. Vegas Golden Knights vs. 5. Vancouver Canucks

Players to Watch: F Mark Stone and D Quinn Hughes

Who Wins: Canucks in 6 games

2. Colorado Avalanche vs. 3. Dallas Stars

Players to Watch: F Nazem Kadri and D Miro Heiskanen

Who Wins: Avalanche in 5 games

2020 Stanley Cup Playoffs Preview

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Eastern Conference

1. Philadelphia Flyers vs. 8. Montreal Canadiens

Players to Watch: G Carter Hart and G Carey Price

Who Wins: Flyers in 5 games

2. Tampa Bay Lightning vs. 7. Columbus Blue Jackets

Players to Watch: F Nikita Kucherov and D Seth Jones

Who Wins: Lightning in 6 games

3. Washington Capitals vs. 6. New York Islanders

Players to Watch: G Braden Holtby and D Ryan Pulock

Who Wins: Islanders in 7 games

4. Boston Bruins vs. 5. Carolina Hurricanes

Players to Watch: F David Pastrnak and F Sebastian Aho

Who Wins: Hurricanes in 7 games

Western Conference

1. Vegas Golden Knights vs. 8. Chicago Blackhawks

Players to Watch: G Robin Lehner and G Corey Crawford

Who Wins: Golden Knights in 6 games

2. Colorado Avalanche vs. 7. Phoenix Coyotes

Players to Watch: D Cale Makar and F Taylor Hall

Who Wins: Avalanche in 6 games

3. Dallas Stars vs. 6. Calgary Flames

Players to Watch: G Ben Bishop and F Sean Monahan

Who Wins: Flames in 6 games

4. St. Louis Blues vs. 5. Vancouver Canucks

Players to Watch: D Alex Pietrangelo and D Quinn Hughes

Who Wins: Blues in 7 games

Atlantic Division

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1. Tampa Bay Lightning

They can’t have a repeat of last year and they shouldn’t.

2. Toronto Maple Leafs

This is a crucial year for this group to finally live up to their potential.

3. Boston Bruins

After coming up short in the Stanley Cup final, they’re still contenders once again.

4. Florida Panthers

They have a new goaltender and a Stanley Cup winning coach to go with their high powered offense.

5. Montreal Canadiens

The health of goalie Carey Price will determine their fate this season.

6. Buffalo Sabres

Once again they made a coaching change, but their talent pool is as deep as it’s ever been.

7. Detroit Red Wings

With Steve Yzerman now in charge it’ll be interesting to see how long it takes for them to be contenders.

8. Ottawa Senators

The long rebuild continues north of the border. Continue reading