Now onto the Western Conference Playoff Predictions, where we be like…
Chuck: I have watched some Western Conferences games this year, but those 10pm start times are killers. My predictions are based off: the games I HAVE watch; NHL Network, what I’ve read about the teams, and Ms. Cleo.
Pants: I need to be honest here for a second. Can I vote for the Oilers? No? Then I don’t know anything about the West. I will predict – I may even have emotions – but everything I think about the Western Conf. is learned from reading other predictions or the final NHL standings. Basically, I am cheating off all your tests.
Blues vs. Wild
Chuck: Blues. But maybe the Wild? Wild have been the best team in the NHL since January and the exceptional play of Devan Dubnyk has carried them through, but the Blues have a sniper in Tarasenko and a deep corps of forwards and defenseman. This one is a conundrum, for sure.
Pants: Blues. They always seem to be giving my teams a hard time, so this year will be not different. Also, BORT’S BEARD! I needs it.
Predators vs. Blackhawks
Chuck: Predators. I’m going out on a limb for this one but just hear me out. Preds’ defensemen make an in so many ways and Weber and Josi are a stellar 1-2 punch. James Neal, when he is in the zone, can score goals that other guys just can’t. Hawks’ defense has been meh of late and Crawford can’t do it without good players in front of him.
Pants: Probably the Predators, because they’ve been rock solid all season. Also, I have Gingerbeard withdrawal something fierce. The Hawks have had their ups-and-downs, though they are getting Patrick Kane back right on cue to make me eat these words.
Ducks vs. Jets
Chuck: Ducks. Ducks has strength on pretty much all four lines and if their forechecking is on point, they are probably one of the best in the league. Paul Maurice has changed slowly changed the identity and culture of the Jets but they aren’t quite there…yet. But I wouldn’t be mad at ALL if the Jets pulled this upset off.
Pants: Ducks. If you’ve never watched Bruce Boudreau coach, please take this opportunity. If he was an iso-cam feed during games, I would never need to see the ice.
Canucks vs. Flames
Chuck: Flames. I don’t have a dog in this fight since the Bruins are out so I am looking for a team to adopt. Maybe the Flames are it. So what that they haven’t won a playoff round since 2004 (when the lost in the SCF)? Great coach in Bob Hartley, a hugely successful powerplay and their ability to win without Giordano might make the Flames a dark horse.
Pants: When I go to horse races, I bet on whichever horse has the best drag queen name. (So far, Surly Temple is the all-time favorite.) So when I say I can’t pick a team in this series, know how deeply and truly I do not care. I seem to have a lot of Canuck fan friends though, and I wish them well.
Comment below and let us know your predictions. Who’s your dark horse team?
Tags: Anaheim Ducks, calgary flames, Chicago Blackhawks, minnesota wild, nashville predators, St. Louis Blues, Vancouver Canucks, Western Conference, winnipeg jets