2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs Preview

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Eastern Conference

Atlantic Division

1. Florida Panthers vs. 4. Washington Capitals

Players to Watch: F Jonathan Huberdeau and Goalies Vitek Vanecek and Ilya Samsonov

Who Wins: Panthers in 5 games

2. Toronto Maple Leafs vs. 3. Tampa Bay Lightning

Players to Watch: F Auston Matthews and D Victor Hedman

Who Wins: Lightning in 6 games

Metropolitan Division

1. Carolina Hurricanes vs. 4. Boston Bruins

Players to Watch: D Jaccob Slavin and F Brad Marchand

Who Wins: Hurricanes in 6 games

2. New York Rangers vs. 3. Pittsburgh Penguins

Players to Watch: G Igor Shesterkin and F Sidney Crosby

Who Wins: Rangers in 6 games

Western Conference

Central Division

1. Colorado Avalanche vs. 4. Nashville Predators

Players to Watch: F Nathan McKinnon and D Roman Josi

Who Wins: Avalanche in 6 games

2. Minnesota Wild vs. 3. St. Louis Blues

Players to Watch: F Kirill Kaprizov and F Vladimir Tarasenko

Who Wins: Wild in 7 games

Pacific Division

1. Calgary Flames vs. 4. Dallas Stars

Players to Watch: F Johnny Gaudreau and F Jason Robertson

Who Wins: Flames in 5 games

2. Edmonton Oilers vs. 3. Los Angeles Kings

Players to Watch: F Connor McDavid and G Jonathan Quick

Who Wins: Oilers in 6 games

Stanley Cup Prediction

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Eastern Conference

1. Tampa Bay Lightning vs. 4. Boston Bruins

2. Florida Panthers vs. 3. Toronto Maple Leafs

1. Carolina Hurricanes vs. 4. Washington Capitals

2. New York Islanders vs. 3. Pittsburgh Penguins

Western Conference

1. Colorado Avalanche vs. 4. Dallas Stars

2. Minnesota Wild vs. 3. St. Louis Blues

1. Vegas Golden Knights vs. 4. Edmonton Oilers

2. Calgary Flames vs. 3. Vancouver Canucks

Conference Finals

Lightning over Hurricanes

Avalanche over Golden Knights

Stanley Cup Finals

Lightning over Avalanche

2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs Preview

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East Division

1. Pittsburgh Penguins vs. 4. New York Islanders

Players to Watch: G Tristan Jarry and F Mathew Barzal

Who Wins: Penguins in 6 games

2. Washington Capitals vs. 3. Boston Bruins

Players to Watch: D John Carlson and G Tuukka Rask

Who Wins: Bruins in 7 games

Central Division

1. Carolina Hurricanes vs. 4. Nashville Predators

Players to Watch: F Martin Necas and G Juuse Saros

Who Wins: Hurricanes in 5 games

2. Florida Panthers vs. 3. Tampa Bay Lightning

Players to Watch: D MacKenzie Weegar and D Victor Hedman

Who Wins: Lightning in 6 games

North Division

1. Toronto Maple Leafs vs. 4. Montreal Canadiens

Players to Watch: F Auston Matthews and G Carey Price

Who Wins: Maple Leafs in 5 games

2. Edmonton Oilers vs. 3. Winnipeg Jets

Players to Watch: F Connor McDavid and F Mark Scheifele

Who Wins: Oilers in 7 games

West Division

1. Colorado Avalanche vs. 4. St. Louis Blues

Players to Watch: F Nathan McKinnon and G Jordan Binnington

Who Wins: Avalanche in 6 games

2. Vegas Golden Knights vs. 3. Minnesota Wild

Players to Watch: D Shea Theodore and F Kirill Kaprizov

Who Wins: Golden Knights in 7 games

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

West Division

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1. Colorado Avalanche

They proved in the playoffs last year that they are among the best offensive teams in the league.

2. Vegas Golden Knights

Adding a Stanley Cup winner in Alex Pietrangelo on defense shows they are still in a win-now mode for this young franchise.

3. St. Louis Blues

Losing Pietrangelo will hurt, but getting Torey Krug isn’t a bad consolation prize.

4. Minnesota Wild

Their team depth and playing in a weaker division has them primed for a playoff spot.

5. Arizona Coyotes

Too much turmoil in the front office, but the talent is there for playoff contention.

6. Anaheim Ducks

They’re probably another year away from contention, but the offense needs to start showing more progress.

7. San Jose Sharks

Their run for a Cup has come and gone.

8. Los Angeles Kings

The growing pains will continue as will the cap crunch for goalie Jonathan Quick and defenseman Drew Doughty. Continue reading