I’m going to go ahead and predict the Stanley Cup champions. During the second round, I was believing either Detroit or Pittsburgh would win the Cup, maybe a rematch of the 2008 and 2009 finals. of course Detroit was surprisingly knocked out after having a 3-1 series lead. Now that has changed. I’ll start with the Boston-Pittsburgh series. Both defeated their second round opponent in 5 games. I believe this is going to be a toss up series. Vokoun is still standing tall, and of course Rask is, too. Each team has size and physicality, but I believe Boston has more of it. Both can score, but Pittsburgh has the advantage there. The goaltending matchup slightly leans toward Boston, although, like I said, Vokoun is still doing a fantastic job. Can he keep it up, though? If not, I see this series won by Boston. If he does, it goes to Pittsburgh. I’m going to say he does and Pittsburgh moves on to the Stanley Cup Finals.
Now to the Chicago-Los Angeles series. Los Angeles has been outstanding, although most of the success in this post-season is because of Quick, who is arguably the best goaltender in the league. He’s going to have to be top notch if LA wants to move past the fire power of the Blackhawks. Even if he stays spectacular, I see the Blackhawks winning in 6 or 7 games.
Stanley Cup matchup:
Stanley Cup Champions:
This could go either way, but I’m sticking with Chicago. I didn’t think they would make it this far at first, but as the playoffs have gone on, I saw the possibility. We haven’t seen these two teams play against each other yet, with no inter-conference play in the regular season, so it’s hard to know what to expect. They both have firepower, similar goaltending, and defense. Pittsburgh could definitely win it, as they’ve been scoring at will sometimes, but those past three rounds won’t mean anything in this Finals matchup. The Blackhawks’ defense is strong enough where I think they could stop the Penguins. They more than just defend, they attack the puck, more than Ottawa or the New York Islanders did against Pittsburgh. This leads to many turnovers, which has led to many Chicago chances. Even though the Penguins also create many turnovers and pinch at the right times, the Blackhawks seem to do it better. They also are the best at stretch passes that lead to breakouts. They find the holes in the defense and exploit them. To go on, Chicago has killed off every single man-advantage they’ve faced in these playoffs, which is where Pittsburgh has thrived. That right there will be the ultimate factor should this matchup takes place.