As I take the time to scour stats and analysis from the season for things to discuss, I thought I would take a break to let you know how I'm doing in the Score hockey pool (as if any of you care).
In the second round, I chose mostly with my head (so I thought), but had the Bruins falling thanks to my heart. Thankfully for all our blood pressure levels, they did fail to progress – and for a bonus, their loss has vaulted me into the upper reaches of hockey prognosticators (go figure).
This is what I had for Round 2:
Canes over Bruins in 6
Again, I couldn't have picked the Bruins. But I have to say, the Hurricanes looked a lot more likely to pull this off right from the beginning than the Habs ever were. Still, a big and fulfilling upset.
Penguins over Capitals in 7
I believe in big-game players, and big-game players paid back in kind. Crosby proves once again that when he's interested, he's much more interesting.
Wings over Ducks in 5
I didn't think it would be as long, but this battle looked one too far for the Ducks to me.
Canucks over Hawks in 6
I underestimated the Blackhawks again. I'll continue to do that until I'm right...
On series winners, this makes me 9/12 or 3 lucky choices over the expected crap shoot. I'm not too great at predicting series length but, luckily for me, neither is anyone else. The updated standings (i.e., bloggers making Mark Osbourne look like an ass) can be found here.
I'd also like to note that Leafs fans and former Leafs players live up to their franchise expectations by threatening to come somewhere between 9th and 15th in any league they are in again. I think they feel most comfortable there.
I'll now explain my round 3 choices and watch as my luck runs out in this game of chance...
Penguins over Hurricanes in 7
So far, so good. Though I love the crafty additions Jim Rutherford has made, he is going against the tried and true method of losing for 5 seasons to stack with talent approach. Malkin and Crosby together could make up for any number of Komisarek and Brisebois blunders; and Price could fluff goals to his heart's content. Carolina have one answer to this duo (Eric Staal), but I fear Brind'amour will be stretched beyond his limits with the big Russian. 7 games though – it was a tough choice.
Red Wings over Blackhawks in 6
The reigning (and probably eventual repeat) Conn Smythe winner really tips this one in Detroit's favour. I fear that the Wings have the answer to Chicago's speed and forecheck with their team defence, experience and most importantly: patience.
As fun as this is, with the chance at winning and all, I would just like to reiterate: Is it October yet?