Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Chronic Prognosticator: The Stanley Cup

Alright....well....I guess it's time for me to give a prediction, huh?? Well, interesting.

(1) Vancouver Canucks vs. (3) Boston Bruins

First and foremost, this is a match-up against two of the best goalies in the league and two of the best tandems in net in the league. That will probably what will make or break the Finals....or not. But, the interesting ideal that either Tim Thomas or Roberto Luongo could fall apart of the opponent figure them out is a great side story to look at.

If you want statistical breakdowns.....go elsewhere for actual fact. From what I've seen, the Bruins forwards have been better defensively and in the plus/minus column-- which, sure, is a misnomer in some instances; but very interesting that six out of the top-10 in plus/minus are Bruins and only one is a Canuck, which is Kevin Bieksa. Don't know how well that'll play into things, but still.

The special teams battle is where this should be won or lost. Boston's power-play is working at 8%, while the Canucks are at 28%; though the PKs are about the same (Canucks 80.6%, Bruins 79.4%), the power play could be the downfall of the Bruins. That said, if the Bruins play undisciplined, the Canucks will make them pay, especially after the Sedins were woken up last series. The Bruins are taking about 11 PIMs a game, which is more than enough time for the Sedins to connect.

It'll come down to depth, and with these teams matching up very nicely-- it'll be a battle through it all. David Krejci and Nathan Horton will have to continue to be lights out for the Bruins, with Brad Marchand trying to stir the pot and maybe spark that power play or irk Roberto Luongo. The Canucks have the Sedins and Ryan Kesler, but Alexandre Burrows has been solid for the Canucks in these playoffs and could be a difference maker in this series.

So....who do I choose?? I think it'll go seven games....and in full disclosure; I can't stand either team from a fan standpoint, but.....

I think the Vancouver Canucks will lift the Cup for Canada for the first time since 1993. They are on a mission, they have been more focused this season and post-season than ever before and they'll probably do well enough against the Bruins to force them to make mistakes and get Thomas off his game enough to capitalize on his gaffs.

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