Bruins vs Flyers- Very intriguing matchup with both teams having very similar game plans when it comes to playoff hockey. Play physical, go in the "dirty" areas, and compete every shift.
Matchup to Watch: Patrice Bergeon vs Chris Pronger (when both are on the ice)
Prediction: Due to losing Carter and Gagne for the WHOLE series is huge, and the B's are getting Savard back on that powerplay which will help tremendously.
Bruins over Flyers in 6 games
Canadiens vs Penguins- As much as I hate the Habs, you have to give them credit for their effort in beating the most skilled, and selfish team in the league in the Capitals. Halak has been a beast and could steal this series. It will be tougher facing Crosby and Malkin then Ovechkin and Backstrom and they put in actual teamwork, unlike those fellows in D.C.
Matchup to Watch: Hall Gill vs Sidney Crosby
Prediction: Halak will be good, but Pitt is too tough and knows how to win, and work very well as a team, unlike the Caps (I know, ive insulted them too many times)
Penguins over Canadiens in 4 games
Sharks vs Red Wings- Considering how San Jose had some trouble with Colorado in the 1st round, I'd be concerned if I was a Sharks fan. Jumbo Joe was awful vs the Avs and that HAS to change playing a great team like Detroit. Jimmy Howard has been a stud in goalie for the Wings and the team was unhealthy for most of the year. Since they became fully healthy, theyve been tearing up the league.
Matchup to Watch: Nicklas Lidstrom vs Dany Heatley (if he plays)
Prediction: Jumbo Joe and the un-hungry Sharks foil again. Detroit knows how to win. San Jose doesn't. Phoneix was very motivated, and the Wings still won. Red Wings back in the conference finals (and the Stanley Cup, in my opinion)
Red Wings over Sharks in 6 games
Blackhawks vs Canucks- How about another series between these two teams in the 2nd round. Why not right? Not a ton has changed since last year, except that now Chicago has Marian "Choke"-Sa on their team to hit more players and not be suspended by them. Still, likely the longest series of the four is this one. Both teams have what it takes to go all the way.
Matchup to Watch: Duncan Keith vs Ryan Kesler
Prediction: Robert Luongo is on a mission. He was so upset about giving up seven goals in last year's Game 6, and he wants revenge. Look for him to have an amazing series. Chicago's goaltending has been questionable and they had a LOT more trouble with the Preds then they should have. Still, closest series of the 4.
Canucks over Blackhawks in 7 games
So what do YOU guys think? Please comment and tell me if you agree, or disagree. Always like talking to you guys.
Oh yeah, almost forgot, GO BRUINS!