So, how’d I do?
Tampa/NY Isles – me: Tampa/5 real: tampa/5
Boston/Montreal – me: Boston/6 real: Montreal/7
Philly/NJ – Me: NJ/6 real: Philly/5
Toronto/Ottawa – Me: Toronto/6 real: Toronto/7
Detroit/Nashville – Me: Detroit/5 real: Detroit/6
San Jose/St. Louis – Me: SJ/6 real: SJ/5
Vancouver/Calgary – Me: Van/5 real: Cal/7
Colorado/Dallas – Me: Dallas/6 real: Col/5
4 of 8. The only two I missed badly on were Philly/NJ (Brodeur just wasn’t sharp) and Colorado/Dallas (Dallas wasn’t as good as I expected)
On to the 2nd round…
SJ/Colorado: two guarantees: if the Avs lose a series in the playoffs, aeberscher will get blamed by a lot of fans and pundits; also, if the Avs do lose — it won’t be his fault. He’s not Roy, but he’s pretty darn good. Dangerous team, but I’m just not that worried. The Sharks match up well, and if they can contain Forsberg and Sakic (easier said than done), it’s a fairly easy victory. I don’t expect it to be quite that easy, but I still expect the sharks to get it done: Sharks in 6.
Detroit/Calgary: I think Detroit is beatable here. Older and slower, and Legace/Joseph just isn’t making me think they’ll stone teams. On the other side, Calgary is young, fast, Iginla has shown up and taken control, Kiprusoff is showing an ability to play up to pressure, and the Flames may well just skate the Wings into the offseason; you can’t hit what you can’t catch (ask Dallas Drake…). Flames in 6
Tampa/Montreal: Theodore? Or Khabibulin? St. Louis? or Koivu. May be the most fun of the 2nd round. The Lightning have been pretty much ignored by both ESPN/ABC and CBC, so most fans don’t have a clue what they’re bringing to this series. I think Theodore is the better goalie — but I’m not sure it’s enough to win the series. Tampa in 6
Philly/Toronto: My heart says Toronto, my head says Philly. But my head says Philly every year, and every year, they find a way to screw it up and go out earlier than they should. This year, it’s Belfour/Esche — and Esche is impressive, but Belfour is unconscious — Ottawa wins that series handily if it wasn’t the Eagle stoning (and Lalime showing his true colors in that game 7 implosion. The earlier games was the illusion, folks, time to try something else, and it’s not Prusek). I’ll go with Belfour here, and expect Philly to find some way to lose again. Leafs in 5.
And I sure would love to see a Sharks/Flames western final. Wouldn’t that be fun? Nabokov/Kiprusoff for the west?