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The Puck Stops Here

First Round Playoff Predictions

It is playoff time and time to make first round playoff predictions.  As always, I expect to get some of these predictions wrong.  If hockey was completely predictable, why would we bother to watch?  I do expect that I will get more of these predictions correct than wrong and that it isn't possible to get them all right without an extreme amount of luck on your side.

Anaheim defeats Dallas.  The Ducks probably overachieved to win the West Conference but they have a good team.  Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf may be the best healthy one-two punch in the game (given that Malkin's health in questionable).  Jim Nill has done a lot to right the Dallas franchise and get them back into the playoffs, but that will likely be their high-water mark this season.

Colorado defeat MinnesotaColorado is an even more unlikely division winner than Anaheim is, but they should be able to beat Minnesota.  This is especially true when Minnesota has Ilya Bryzgalov in goal and he is their third choice at best.

Chicago defeat St Louis.  Chicago is the defending champions and they didn't push themselves to win the Presidents Trophy, but they have the best team in the west.  The question mark is that both Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews missed the end of the regular season due to injury.  St Louis was not a particularly hot team down the stretch, so they do not look ready to pull an upset.

Los Angeles defeat San Jose.  This may be the toughest first round match-up.  Los Angeles has a significant edge in goal with Jonathan Quick and the best defenceman in the series in Drew Doughty.  I think that is enough to give them an advantage in the series.

Boston defeat Detroit.  Boston is the best candidate to be an elite team this year.  Detroit would be a better opponent if they were healthy.  Henrik Zetterberg is out, but even with him healthy the Bruins should be able to win this series.

Pittsburgh defeats Columbus.  This may be the most one-sided playoff series.  Columbus lack any proven scorers or top defencemen.  Pittsburgh has far too much talent to lose in the first round.

Montreal defeat Tampa Bay.  Montreal clearly wins the goaltending battle with Ben Bishop hurt.  Tampa will miss Martin St Louis.  It's far easier to shut down Steve Stamkos if he is the only star forward on the Lightning.

NY Rangers defeat Philadelphia.  The goaltending match-up is Henrik Lundqvist against Steve Mason.  I think that is all that needs to be said to explain why the Rangers are favored.

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redxblack's avatar

So you’d take all the top seeds in the matchups, except in some of the 2 v 3 brackets. That’s some bold picking! Edgy stuff.

I now consider TPSH a hall of fame worthy blog.

Posted by redxblack from Akron Ohio on 04/16/14 at 12:26 AM ET

Chet's avatar

took the words out of my mouth redx.

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 04/16/14 at 01:29 AM ET

PuckStopsHere's avatar

If you want to make a comment here try to at least be intelligent.

In this situation, you would laugh if I pick the weaker teams (i.e. upsets) or laugh if I don’t pick enough bold upsets.  You just want to be a jackass.

Posted by PuckStopsHere on 04/16/14 at 01:43 AM ET

Chet's avatar

PSH, the problem never changes: you provide next to no analysis. look at your MON/TB blurb, for example. does TB really not have any other good forwards you can think of? did ben bishop really singlehandedly get them into the playoffs? therefore, because he’s hurt, they have no chance?  that’s just lazy and nonsensical.

next, look at your NYR/PHI blurb. you break the entire series down to goaltending. how f*cking lazy is that? who has better forward depth? who has better defensive depth? how were the teams trending?

now go back and read the rest of your predictions. anyone could’ve just cut-and-pasted that stuff. why bother?

you seem like you want to be taken seriously, but how can anyone take this stuff seriously? i’m posting this as a critique, not as a fan of any one team. you usually just regurgitate the obvious—i mean, half your posts are breakdowns of stats or standings. who needs that when they can just look at the stats and standings pages from various leagues? it’s useless crap to tell us who’s ahead in the A or which NHL rookie is the leading calder candidate because he has the most points in february. i mean, duh.

it’s not that we want to be jackasses; that’s a conclusion you arrive at whenever anyone calls you out for being lazy and making the world’s most obvious posts. we don’t set out to be insulting. it’s just that your posts are absolutely devoid of any legitimate hockey analysis, time after time, and your attitude is completely awful whenever people tell you as much.

and no, i don’t need to hear the advice about how i can somehow block your postings. i won’t do that. if you’re going to have a forum on this site, how about stepping up the quality of your posts?

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 04/16/14 at 05:32 AM ET

bigdee89's avatar

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 04/16/14 at 05:32 AM ET

Well said.

Posted by bigdee89 from The Great White North Eh? on 04/16/14 at 07:24 AM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

If you want to make a comment here try to at least be intelligent.

You should be held to this standard.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 04/16/14 at 08:00 AM ET

Chris from NOHS's avatar

Well said Chet.

Posted by Chris from NOHS from Columbus, OH/Grand Rapids, MI on 04/16/14 at 08:13 AM ET


That’s some bold picking! Edgy stuff.

As useles as TPSH generally is, do you want him to pick who he thinks will win or do you want him to only make crazy, bold picks?

Do people generally get more credit for makiing bold, edgy picks rather than picking the actual winners?

Posted by Garth on 04/16/14 at 09:20 AM ET

awould's avatar

How’s TPSH supposed to care enough to write up a thorough and deep analysis? THERE ARE NO ELITE TEAMS THIS YEAR. AGAIN.

Posted by awould on 04/16/14 at 11:01 AM ET

redxblack's avatar

Do people generally get more credit for makiing bold, edgy picks rather than picking the actual winners?

Posted by Garth on 04/16/14 at 09:20 AM ET

What’s the point in blogging which seeds were favored in the standings? Why bother picking winners without substantial reasons for why they’ll win. Someone might as well blog that they predict that they will get wet in a rainstorm. Sure it will happen, but so what?


Posted by awould on 04/16/14 at 11:01 AM ET

This is awesome.

Posted by redxblack from Akron Ohio on 04/16/14 at 11:12 AM ET

perfection's avatar

while my comments have been deleted on multiple occasions from this blog and I usually just don’t partake… I think playoff predictions don’t really call for everyone to get their undies in such a bunch. I mean, most sites I see just have a grid with all the teams and people just putting one word picks down in the grid. The fact that he put blurbs at all is more than most.

Also, who cares what seeds he picks? ALL playoff prediction posts in every form across every medium are hollow nonsense from folks who are just killing time till the games start. I mean, you can analyze defenses, offenses, goalies, coaches, regular season match-ups and come up with the most scientific formula on the planet to pick and its still meaningless fun and games. The only point of these things, across the board, is so you can check at the end and see how many you guessed right. And then you don’t even win anything. It’s all nonsense.

So he thinks top seeds are going to take most series… guess what, SO DOES EVERYONE ELSE. The fact that some of you demand upset picks simply to ramp up the entertainment value is pretty baseless. I’ve definitely been critical of many of the claims and tactics used on this blog, but this just doesn’t seem like one that should have instigated so much vehemence. Who cares who ANYONE picks when it comes down to it? They still have to play the actual games. It’s all meaningless.

Posted by perfection from LaLaLand on 04/16/14 at 08:02 PM ET


Red Wings homers get owned. AGAIN. Buncha butt mad pansies here cant take that some people dont talk about their team 24/7.

Posted by redwingshomersLOL on 05/04/14 at 12:23 AM ET

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imageThe Puck Stops Here was founded during the 2004/05 lockout as a place to rant about hockey. The original site contains over 1000 posts, some of which were also published on FoxSports.com.

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