Some of you may know me for my uncanny ability to pick teams and/or players for fantasy hockey. I can’t win a door prize for the life of me, but for some reason, even my most random picks often come true – lest we forget the big Bob Gainey win of 2010.
Here is my contribtion to hopeful gamblers everywhere.
Disclaimer: Stephanie Darwish is not responsible for any incorrect predictions, loss of homes, cars or family, due to gambling. Nor do I endorse gambling or encourage money wagering of any kind. (Though if you have a good bet or playoff format, I’m always game!)
Capitals vs Rangers:
This season the Rangers were Caps-Killers, shutting them out twice out of their four meetings. I really want the Capitals to advance, if anything for the sake of Ovechkin’s sanity, but once again they drew a bad match-up. Lundqvist will “Halak” them, and the Capitals will become the San Jose Sharks of the East. Ranger in 7.
Flyers vs. Sabres
The Flyers are struggling, they don’t have Pronger in their line-up, and no one is really sure which goaltender they will go with. Even with all that, I still say Flyers in 5. Despite Buffalo’s late season surge, they are just too small to match-up against the Flyers. As a Habs fan, I know all too well how bad small forwards are against the Flyers. I’ll give Buffalo a game, but it will be Flyers in 5.
Bruins vs Canadiens:
There’s no getting around it… I am obviously picking the Habs. I am a biased and subjective writer who never bets against the home team. Go Habs Go! That being said, the Habs haven’t won a series without going to 7 games in I don’t know how long – Habs in 7.
Penguins vs Lightning
This is a tough one. I like Tampa Bay, but Pittsburgh just has too much playoff experience as a team. The Lightning have been out of the playoff picture for awhile now, and while I welcome back to the real season, they have a few hard lessons to learn – the first being that you don’t get out of the first round by playing fire-wagon hockey. Penguins in 6.
Canucks vs Hawks The Canucks are probably giddy with this match up! They have waited three long years to finally get past the Hawks, and with no Byfuglien in Luongo’s crease, the Canucks will easily bypass the Hawks. I’ll go for gold and say Canucks in 4!
Sharks vs Kings
Sorry L.A., but the Sharks are just too good, and Niemi is getting hot. Without hesitation I am picking the Sharks for this series. While the Sharks have had their playoff woes before, I just don’t think L.A. has the bodies to compete against them. Maybe if Kopitar and Williams were in the lineup, but they aren’t, so Sharks in 5.
Wings vs Coyotes
My heart goes out to the Coyotes. They had another good season – unfortunately they are again meeting the Wings in the first round. Nobody beats the Wings in the first round. Their experience alone doesn’t allow it. With that said, I don’t think this will be an easy series for the Wings and I see them being taken to 7 games again… Wings in 7.
Ducks vs Predators
My whole playoff fantasy pool rides on the fact the I think the Ducks will go far. They are strong, they have fire-power, and somehow, Dan Ellis is getting the job done. Pekke Rinne is good, but when you face a powerplay unit that consists of Bobby Ryan, Corey Perry, Ryan Getzlaf, Lubomir Vishnovsky and Teemu Selanne, you aren’t going to stop them all. Ducks in 6.