Monday, May 28, 2007

Finals Prediction

Man, this is a tough series to handicap. I really blew the pooch on my predictions for the Eastern Conference Final last round, but I did get the Ducks right. Ottawa just continues to surprise- they are ready and willing to do everything to win. They hit, play defense, have good goaltending, and score, especially that first line, which has been the best line in the playoffs.

Not really that unlike the Ducks, although it's been the Ducks' "second" line of Perry, Penner, and Getzlaf that has been dominating for the Ducks, though in a different way. Chris Kunitz is out, so that leaves a hole on the first line, a hole being filled by Ric Jackman Brad May. Jiggy is playing Smythe-worth goal, and that's the first rule of the playoffs- the team with the hot goalie wins.

For me, the question comes down to whether the Spezza-Heatley-Alfredsson line can score against the shutdown line of Pahlsson-Moen-Niedermayer. We will see if Bryan Murray can get any of the matchups he wants on the road.

As for the pick- it was so impressive the way Ottawa dispatched Buffalo, I have to go with them. The Ducks' "kids" line can't keep it up forever, and Kunitz missing will put more of a spotlight on Selanne, who will be effectively shut down this series. Ottawa in 6.

1 comment:

Jeremy said...

I didn't get to this before the game yesterday, but am shocked at your pick!
I am willing to overlook the Jackman error (he's a defenseman), but the dig in the "kid" line is intolerable. All three went through the playoffs last year, learned from it, and know what it'll take to bring the Cup to SoCal.

Pahlsson for Conn Smythe!