Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Stanley Cup Final prediction

New Jersey Devils vs Los Angeles Kings

Possession. The Devils in the playoffs have been great against mediocre possession teams. The Kings have been decent against two great and one mediocre team. With Zajac looking better with each game and Kovalchuk apparently recovered from his injury in the first round, and with Richards and Carter still a little cold possession-wise (as they have been all season), this series could actually be close in this regard.

Brodeur. He's looked solid. I don't buy that he is. However, anything can happen in seven games, and with Quick looking more beatable than he was in the first two rounds, it's conceivable that Brodeur outplays Quick enough for this to be a long series.

Special teams. The Devils' PK had a net goal differential around -1 every eight games during the regular season, which is ridiculous. It's -15 in 18 playoff games. Meanwhile, the Kings PP is only +6. Which dam will break? In the same vein, the Kings PK is even in the playoffs (5 SHGF, 5 PPGA) while the Devils PP is +10. Something will give.

Elias. If he can win his matchup, the Devils have a great chance. I'm not sure who Pete DeBoer wants to match Parise with, but if Elias can win or even just break even against Richards or Kopitar, suddenly an upset doesn't look too unlikely. He hasn't scored much in the playoffs, and Quick is a hard goalie to score on, but you never know.

Prediction: I think the Kings possession game is simply too much. I think Quick has started a bit of a funk (nothing too bad, though) while Brodeur has been hot, so there's an even playing field there, but I think the Devils D will simply be overwhelmed more often than not. Kings in 6.

1 comment:

  1. Very good prediction. It really played out like you thought. I wish you were wrong though!