Tuesday, April 12, 2011

My Cup Bracket

You can see it here (via James Mirtle).


The main reason I pick Washington over Buffalo is because Dennis Wideman should be back by then. He can drive Corsi with very little help, making him the ideal guy to go out with the 3rd and 4th lines. I like the Caps' goaltending over Ryan Miller, and the Caps' special teams units are very strong. Pominville-Connolly-Hecht look like they make a strong power versus power outscoring unit, but aside from them, Buffalo looks thin. I'm not sure they will be able to handle Ovechkin-Backstrom in playoff mode. And considering the Sabres are solidly in the red without their tough minutes players on ice (Corsi Off)...I hope I'm not completely off base here.

I've been harping recently on Boston's poor possession game. The only reasons they've found success are shooting luck and Tim Thomas. They're a 50% Fenwick team, and the Penguins are a 55% team without Crosby. They may have him back by this time. While Crosby would see lots of Chara and Bergeron, there's a reason he's Sidney Crosby, and I don't doubt he'll dominate, or at least break even. Even Jordan Staal wouldn't embarrass himself. Pittsburgh's forecheck and cycling game should victimize Tomas Kaberle and the rest of Boston's thin D-corps repeatedly, and Fleury isn't terrible enough to blow the series. Pens should win, with the length of the series being determined by when/if Crosby comes back.

Vancouver will roll over Nashville. After Weber-Suter stopping the Sedins, who will stop Kesler and the others? Maybe Pekka Rinne can steal the series, but I doubt it. Nashville lacks game-breakers on offense, which won't help matters.

Sharks-Red Wings should be a good series, but like I've been saying, San Jose has been the best team for the past three months, and I'll take that over Detroit, as good as Detroit is. I can't see any game situation in which Detroit can make up the ground they lose in possession.

The Capitals always seem to play the Penguins well, and it's not just results--it's scoring chances and Corsi, too, with the teams tending to play a pretty even game (with an eye to score effects). This is a close one (probably not as close as I'd like to believe, though), and because of home ice I give it to the Capitals.

As good as Vancouver has been, San Jose seems better to me right now. 58% Fenwick > 54% Fenwick.

And I won't pick against Fenwick in the Finals. At this point, I like the Sharks to win the Stanley Cup this season.

To recap:

Conference Quarterfinals:
Caps over Rangers
Flyers lose to Sabres
Bruins over Habs
Pens over Bolts

Canucks over Hawks
Sharks over Kings
Red Wings over Coyotes
Ducks lose to Predators

Conference Semifinals:
Caps over Sabres
Bruins lose to Pens

Canucks over Predators
Sharks over Red Wings

Conference Finals:
Caps over Pens

Canucks lose to Sharks

Caps lose to Sharks

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