The First Round of the NHL playoffs are complete. The 1st round demonstrated that there is parity among the playoff teams. Long series and upsets were highlights of the 1st Round.
The two Stanley Cup Finalists from last year, Colorado and Tampa Bay respectively, were both eliminated.
The Boston Bruins, President Trophy winners and record setters with 65 regular season wins were upset.
Ginger Donkey Hockey correctly picked 6 of the 8 series, missing Seattle’s upset win over the Avalanche and Florida’s big win over the Bruins.
Matthew Tkachuk related in an interview that “no-one in the world would have picked them (Florida) to beat Boston”. However, I do know that GDH Contributor Brad Mac did make this correct prediction.
So, the second round selections will feature picks from for Contributors, Donny Mac, Brad Mac, Colin Mac and P Dunn.
This years Stanley Cup is up for grabs.
Toronto Vs Florida. Leafs in 6 . Leafs removing the 1st round curse will provide strong motivation and mojo moving forward. But, they need to take the Panthers seriously. Leafs need to start on time instead of chasing the game.
Carolina Vs New Jersey. Hurricanes in 7. Very close series and is up for grabs. Cains will persevere with Home Ice advantage.
Vegas Vs Edmonton. Knights in 7. Expect a close series. In the end, Vegas will prove a tougher opponent for Oiler’s big two offensive threats. Goaltending may be the difference.
Dallas Vs Seattle. Stars in 6. Offense will carry Dallas past the pesty Kraken.
Toronto Vs Florida. Leafs in 6. Toronto’s Forward depth will make the difference.
Carolina Vs New Jersey. Devils in 7. Goaltending will carry New Jersey.
Vegas Vs Edmonton. Oilers in 6. Edmonton’s powerhouse offense will prove too much for Vegas.
Dallas Vs Seattle. Stars in 6. Stars balanced attack and goaltending will move them to the next round.
Toronto Vs Florida. Leafs in 5. Toronto will find a new level of confidence with winning the 1st round series. Still have much more to show as they build momentum.
Carolina Vs New Jersey. Devils in 7. Close series. New Jersey’s strong offense will overcome Carolina’s stingy defense.
Vegas Vs Edmonton. Oilers in 7. McDavid and Eichel showdown. Winner between the two will determine the outcome. My money is on McDavid.
Dallas Vs Seattle. Stars in 6. Dallas will keep cruising all the way to the Stanley Cup Final due to the strong leadership and play of their veteran players.
Toronto Vs Florida. Leafs in 6. Florida is a formidable opponent. Will need to manage Tkachuk’s physical play and offense. Leafs are building momentum. Powerplay and core players will be the difference for the Leafs.
Carolina Vs New Jersey. Devils in 7. Will be close. Devils have built momentum in beating a very good Rangers team. Goaltending favors the Devils and will be the difference.
Vegas Vs Edmonton. Knights in 7. Again, a very close series. McDavid is almost unstoppable. Huge year. However, Vegas will find a way to limit McDavid’s and Draisaitl’s offensive damage. Goaltending will be Edmonton’s downfall. Jack Eichel will prove that he is back and once again deserves to be considered an elite talent.
Dallas Vs Seattle. Stars in 6. Seattle proved to be monsters in defeating the Stanley Cup Champion avalanche. But, this Cinderella ride for this second year franchise will come to an end. The veteran players of the Stars will prove to be too much.