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Official 2007-2008 Stanley Cup Playoffs Thread

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Official 2007-2008 Stanley Cup Playoffs Thread

Unread postby skatingtripods » Tue Apr 08, 2008 4:51 pm

My TCF playoff preview will be up tonight.

Talk about that here, your own personal predictions, and all Stanley Cup Playoff talk in this thread.

The playoff matchups:

Eastern Conference

1. Montreal Canadiens v. 8. Boston Bruins

2. Pittsburgh Penguins v. 7. Ottawa Senators

3. Washington Capitals v. 6. Philadelphia Flyers

4. New Jersey Devils v. 5. New York Rangers

Western Conference

1. Detroit Red Wings v. 8. Nashville Predators

2. San Jose Sharks v. 7. Calgary Flames

3. Minnesota Wild v. 6. Colorado Avalanche

4. Mighty Ducks of Anaheim v. 5. Dallas Stars
Last edited by skatingtripods on Fri Aug 15, 2008 3:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Official 2007-2008 Stanley Cup Playoffs Thread

Unread postby buckeyehoppy » Tue Apr 08, 2008 9:13 pm

The playoff matchups:

Eastern Conference

1. Montreal Canadiens v. 8. Boston Bruins

Pick: Habs in 6

Notes: At the start of the season, I had both these teams on the outside looking in. Both have been better than advertised. In the case of Montreal, much better. Both have played very smart hockey all season and the payoff comes with the winner being one of the last eight standing. The Habs have the slight overall edge and should prove to be that much better in this matchup.

2. Pittsburgh Penguins v. 7. Ottawa Senators

Pick: Pens in 7

Notes: Ottawa was tabbed by yours truly as the pre-season favorite to lift the Cup. Guess I oopsed, but I am only picking the Pens in 7 because I don't exactly know how everybody back from injury will work together. On paper, if everything works well for the Pens then this should be a rout because Ottawa is a mess and look like they are light years away from last season's final round appearance.

3. Washington Capitals v. 6. Philadelphia Flyers

Pick: Caps in 7

Notes: This is the weakest of the first round pairings. Washington fought tooth and nail to get this slot and do deserve to be in the playoffs. The fight to get in have them poised with plenty of confidence going into a first round match with a pretty ordinary Flyers team. So-so goalkeeping and a marginal attack will doom this team against a scrappy Caps squad that has nothing to lose.

4. New Jersey Devils v. 5. New York Rangers

Pick: Rangers in 6

Notes: There's at least three first round matchups where it will be a shame that someone has to lose. This is one of them. Either one of these teams has at least most of the tools to make a deep run in this tournament. The thing that hurts New Jersey in this round is that they don't score a lot of goals. When you are facing one of the better goalies in the tournament in Lundqvist, you'll have a problem. The Devils saving grace is that they match in goal with the best GK in the tournament, Brodeur. But, will he have enough. The Devils are asking a lot of their future HOFer.

Western Conference

1. Detroit Red Wings v. 8. Nashville Predators

Pick: Red Wings in 5

Notes: The Preds have defied logic with this playoff run. They should have been nowhere near these playoffs after trading or casting off most of their elite talent. But they stepped up all season long and Trotz is my odds-on favorite for Coach of the Year. But the Winged Wheelers will end the cinderella run for the Preds, more than likely in unceremonious style. I think Nashville should win a game here, but not much more.

2. San Jose Sharks v. 7. Calgary Flames

Pick: Sharks in 7

Notes: Two more teams here that should engage in an all-out war in the first round. This pairing could be just as likely in the conference finals, but is happening in the first round. Too bad. But the team emerging from this matchup should have a load of confidence going into the next series. The Sharks have a lot on the line in this tournament because of past playoff failures. They should be equal to the task in this first round series against a very good Calgary squad. The Sharks should take a rubber game in San Jose in a couple weeks.

3. Minnesota Wild v. 6. Colorado Avalanche

Pick: Avs in 6

Notes: This matchup pits two cagey and up-and-coming teams with a lot of future upside. The Avalanche has one of the best coaches in the business in Quenneville and enough of a veteran presence to match with the Wild and one of the more unheralded players in the tournament in Gaborik. The Wild was good enough to win the Northwest, so they have the pedigree to make a move in this tournament. But the Avs solid young and old mix coupled with Budaj between the pipes and this should give the fans in Denver something to cheer.

4. Mighty Ducks of Anaheim v. 5. Dallas Stars

Pick: Stars in 7

Notes: Last season's first rounder between Dallas and Vancouver was the most competitive series of that round. Dallas has a knack for getting rough and tumble first pairings when they get to the Cup playoffs. Enter the defending champion Ducks from Anaheim. Anaheim has had a strong campaign in defense of their Cup glory and are a formidable foe for a strong veteran crew from the Metroplex. The Stars, however, find themselves in the same boat as San Jose with a lot to prove and a window of opportunity that is surely closing on this veteran squad. What a message it would be to send off the defending Cup champions. But if any team can do it, the Stars have the talent and the mandate to do it.
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Unread postby skatingtripods » Wed Apr 09, 2008 10:32 am

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Re: Official 2007-2008 Stanley Cup Playoffs Thread

Unread postby Andouble » Wed Apr 09, 2008 7:27 pm

buckeyehoppy wrote:
3. Washington Capitals v. 6. Philadelphia Flyers

Pick: Caps in 7

Notes: This is the weakest of the first round pairings. Washington fought tooth and nail to get this slot and do deserve to be in the playoffs. The fight to get in have them poised with plenty of confidence going into a first round match with a pretty ordinary Flyers team. So-so goalkeeping and a marginal attack will doom this team against a scrappy Caps squad that has nothing to lose.



Haha, what? The Flyers have the most balanced offense in the league, and it isn't really even close. The Flyers have 7 20-goal scorers on their team, and that's not even including Simon Gagne, their most notorious goal-scorer post-lockout. Washington is hot, but like every other team in the league the last 8-10 or so games on their schedule have been against teams in their division, the mediocre-to-terrible Hurricanes, Panthers, Lightning, and Thrashers. The Flyers have picked up slightly less points but did so against playoff teams Pittsburgh, New York, and New Jersey. They only lost one of their last 9 in regulation.

With the tenacity the Flyers play with and how hard the Caps have played under their new coach, this should be one of the better series' of the first round.
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Re: Official 2007-2008 Stanley Cup Playoffs Thread

Unread postby skatingtripods » Wed Apr 09, 2008 8:55 pm

Andouble wrote:Washington is hot, but like every other team in the league the last 8-10 or so games on their schedule have been against teams in their division, the mediocre-to-terrible Hurricanes, Panthers, Lightning, and Thrashers.


The Caps have gotten points in 44 of their last 61 games, winning 37 of them. I'd say that's pretty damn good.

I'm not sold on the Flyers defense or goaltending. Biron is not a good playoff goaltender. This isn't to say that I'm sold on Washington's defense, or the unproven Huet either. I just can't see Philadelphia beating them.
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Re: Official 2007-2008 Stanley Cup Playoffs Thread

Unread postby buckeyehoppy » Wed Apr 09, 2008 11:20 pm

Andouble wrote:
buckeyehoppy wrote:
3. Washington Capitals v. 6. Philadelphia Flyers

Pick: Caps in 7

Notes: This is the weakest of the first round pairings. Washington fought tooth and nail to get this slot and do deserve to be in the playoffs. The fight to get in have them poised with plenty of confidence going into a first round match with a pretty ordinary Flyers team. So-so goalkeeping and a marginal attack will doom this team against a scrappy Caps squad that has nothing to lose.



Haha, what? The Flyers have the most balanced offense in the league, and it isn't really even close. The Flyers have 7 20-goal scorers on their team, and that's not even including Simon Gagne, their most notorious goal-scorer post-lockout. Washington is hot, but like every other team in the league the last 8-10 or so games on their schedule have been against teams in their division, the mediocre-to-terrible Hurricanes, Panthers, Lightning, and Thrashers. The Flyers have picked up slightly less points but did so against playoff teams Pittsburgh, New York, and New Jersey. They only lost one of their last 9 in regulation.

With the tenacity the Flyers play with and how hard the Caps have played under their new coach, this should be one of the better series' of the first round.


There's a lot more to having a decent hockey team than having a balanced scoring attack. The Flyers are still deficient in many of the areas that made them the worst team in the NHL last season and no amount of spending on FAs will cure that problem.

I will backup what Tripods said about Biron. There's a reason Buffalo was willing to practically give him to Philly. He's horribly inconsistent and has been throughout his career, including this year. It's why he lost his starting job to Miller, who is on the verge of proving that he is nearly as ordinary as the guy he replaced.

Washington made many right moves at the trade deadline and that will probably be good enough to get them past this first round series. It doesn't matter who they beat down the stretch. The Caps came into the tournament with a shitload of confidence and that may well be all it takes to beat a team with questionable penalty killing and average goal keeping.
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Unread postby Andouble » Thu Apr 10, 2008 10:15 am

I'm not saying one way or the other on who I think will win, I was just disagreeing with the line that the Flyers have a 'marginal attack'.

Last night's Colorado/Minnesota game was great. What the playoffs are all about. Rangers/Devils was awesome for the first 2 periods, as well.
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Unread postby skatingtripods » Thu Apr 10, 2008 10:16 am

In the first round of games, scores from last night.

New York Rangers 4, New Jersey Devils 1 (NYR up 1-0)

Pittsburgh Penguins 2, Ottawa Senators 0 (PIT up 1-0)

Colorado Avalanche 3, Minnesota Wild 2 (OT) (COL up 1-0)

Calgary Flames 3, San Jose Sharks 2 (CGY up 1-0)
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Unread postby Rally Squirl » Thu Apr 10, 2008 10:32 pm

curse you Joe Sakic and your OT winner :-( :sad: :(

hopefully the wild get their act together and can win it tomorrow night

cant go down 0-2 when you had 2 games at home to start
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Unread postby skatingtripods » Fri Apr 11, 2008 11:20 am

Scores from April 10:

Montreal Canadiens 4, Boston Bruins 1

Detroit Red Wings 3, Nashville Predators 1

San Jose Sharks 2, Calgary Flames 0

Dallas Stars 4, Anaheim Mighty Ducks 0


Dallas only allowed one shot to Anaheim in the second period. I still want to buy in to them, but I'm so skeptical that it was an aberation last game. San Jose played a much more spirited game, though Kiprusoff was outstanding. He really kept Calgary in the game.
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Unread postby Rally Squirl » Fri Apr 11, 2008 12:08 pm

im hoping there is as much excitment as the last game between the wild and avs

hopefully we can see this in ALL the games tonight......ill be watching for sure
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Unread postby Cerebral_DownTime » Fri Apr 11, 2008 3:33 pm

Montreal
Ottawa
Philly
NY Rangers


Detwat
San Jose
Minnesota
Dallas
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Unread postby skatingtripods » Fri Apr 11, 2008 9:43 pm

Alex Ovechkin is flat out ridiculous. Mike Green with a hell of a game tonight too.

This Wild/Avs game is pretty physical so far.

Pens with a PPG with 1 minute left, up 4-3.
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Unread postby Rally Squirl » Fri Apr 11, 2008 11:35 pm

god dammit OT again it should be over..

taking a penatly with 1 min to go up by 1 is stupid

they scored on a 6 on 4
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Unread postby buckeyehoppy » Sat Apr 12, 2008 11:13 pm

Skating Tripods wrote:Alex Ovechkin is flat out ridiculous. Mike Green with a hell of a game tonight too.

This Wild/Avs game is pretty physical so far.

Pens with a PPG with 1 minute left, up 4-3.


Ovechkin is an ace. Deserves the Hart Trophy and any other post-season accolades coming his way.

So far, things in all the series have played pretty true to form.

The biggest surprise so far looks to be the pending implosion of Anaheim. I am monitoring the action on-line and from the NHL Network. As of the time of this post, Lehtinen just pumped one past Giguere and the Stars are up 2-0 in Anaheim.

Would be very surprised if Dallas came away 2-up from Anaheim but it looks like that might just happen at this rate.
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Unread postby skatingtripods » Mon Apr 14, 2008 11:22 am

To recap:

Calgary leads San Jose 2-1

Detroit leads Nashville 2-0

Dallas leads Anaheim 2-0

Minnesota tied with Colorado 1-1


Montreal leads Boston 2-1

Pittsburgh leads Ottawa 2-0

Washington tied with Philadelphia 1-1

New York leads New Jersey 2-1
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Unread postby buckeyehoppy » Tue Apr 15, 2008 1:52 am

Skating Tripods wrote:To recap:

Calgary leads San Jose 2-1

Detroit leads Nashville 2-0(now 2-1)

Dallas leads Anaheim 2-0

Minnesota tied with Colorado 1-1(now Minnesota leads Colorado 2-1)


Montreal leads Boston 2-1

Pittsburgh leads Ottawa 2-0(now 3-0)

Washington tied with Philadelphia 1-1

New York leads New Jersey 2-1


Ottawa has basically given up. They won't be coming back. Pittsburgh will be the first team getting the ticket punched to the second round.

Minnesota/Colorado has had three 3-2, single OT outcomes in a row. WOW! This is what playoff hockey is all about!
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Unread postby skatingtripods » Fri Apr 18, 2008 4:24 pm

Some of my analysis for the series thus far:

Pittsburgh wins 4-0 over Ottawa. Pittsburgh is a strong team. Their PP is deadly and they play sound team defense. If Philadelphia winds up finishing off Washington, that's going to be a brutally physical series.

Montreal leads Boston 3-2. On sheer grit, Boston's gotten this to game six. Carey Price was lucky enough to get ahead early so that he could afford a game off, like the one he had in game five. It might go back to seven, but Montreal ultimately prevails.

Philadelphia leads Washington 3-1. The Flyers have done an OUTSTANDING job of quieting Alex Ovechkin. He's only scored a goal in one game and Philadelphia's role players like Kapanen and Knuble are carrying the team. Huet's played well, but Washington cannot score goals.

New York leads New Jersey 3-1. Brodeur just can't put the team on his back anymore and the Rags are too powerful. They're one of the better #5 seeds in recent years and will give Montreal some fits.


Detroit tied 2-2 with Nashville. As usual, the West is far more exciting than the East. The Red Wings will go with Chris Osgood in net. He'll likely step up and settle the team down. It's possible that the team would rather play in front of Ozzie, and I think they put their foot down on this series in the pivotal game five at home.

San Jose leads Calgary 3-2. This has been an extremely well-played and exciting series. San Jose's key players stepped it up last night with Marleau, Thornton, and Cheechoo all getting on the board. Calgary's a tenacious team, and I get the feeling that the series will go back to game 7.

Colorado leads Minnesota 3-2. Colorado should end this series at home. I'm surprised that Jose Theodore has played so well. He's outshined Backstrom and they've scored just enough goals to take a series lead. I expect it to be over in 6.

Dallas leads Anaheim 3-1. Dallas's Marty Turco has really stepped up for this series. He's finally playing in the postseason like he's capable of. I don't think it will be over till game six, though. Anaheim's shutdown line is playing poorly and guys like Getzlaf and Selanne aren't carrying the offense. Dallas is playing a great team game, even without top defenseman Sergei Zubov.
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Unread postby buckeyehoppy » Sun Apr 20, 2008 8:05 pm

Skating Tripods wrote:Pittsburgh wins 4-0 over Ottawa. Pittsburgh is a strong team. Their PP is deadly and they play sound team defense. If Philadelphia winds up finishing off Washington, that's going to be a brutally physical series.


I picked Pittsburgh to win this series, but didn't figure on this outcome. It's like the Pens played half a team. Not to discount the Pens win, because they are a solid team in nearly every aspect of the game and may well be the team from the East in the Cup Finals. But Ottawa looked lost in every game and had no real match for their first two lines.

Skating Tripods wrote:Montreal leads Boston 3-2. On sheer grit, Boston's gotten this to game six. Carey Price was lucky enough to get ahead early so that he could afford a game off, like the one he had in game five. It might go back to seven, but Montreal ultimately prevails.


I suspected that Boston wouldn't roll over against the Habs the way they did during the season and they have been formidable. But Montreal should close them out in Game 7, but I have been impressed by a Bruins team that has simply played better than I gave them credit for from the start of the campaign.

Skating Tripods wrote:Philadelphia leads Washington 3-1. The Flyers have done an OUTSTANDING job of quieting Alex Ovechkin. He's only scored a goal in one game and Philadelphia's role players like Kapanen and Knuble are carrying the team. Huet's played well, but Washington cannot score goals.


With Knuble gone, the Caps now have an opening. Will Ovechkin take advantage? He had a stellar season, but has disappeared in the playoffs. And why do European players do, at times, what Ovechkin has done in this series. The Caps probably would be in a position to win if it wasn't for #8's vanishing act.

Skating Tripods wrote:New York leads New Jersey 3-1. Brodeur just can't put the team on his back anymore and the Rags are too powerful. They're one of the better #5 seeds in recent years and will give Montreal some fits.


I pooh-poohed the Rangers for the long run in these playoffs, too, but was in the minority in that view when I read their press clippings. Now, they have eliminated the best goalie in the tournament. To be fair, they have a team that has looked like some of the teams that Detroit has put on ice the last two or three years. But will they keep it up? The Habs/Bruins winner should pose a stiff challenge to a team filled with start power.

Skating Tripods wrote:Detroit tied 2-2 with Nashville. As usual, the West is far more exciting than the East. The Red Wings will go with Chris Osgood in net. He'll likely step up and settle the team down. It's possible that the team would rather play in front of Ozzie, and I think they put their foot down on this series in the pivotal game five at home.


I didn't figure that it would take six games for the Wings to close out the Preds. Are they putting on their annual folding act in the tournament after a killer regular season? Osgood should get the nod for the remainder of their tournament, but their next test should prove to be much more daunting. The winner of the Stars/Ducks tie should push the Wings past their comfort zone in every way.

Skating Tripods wrote:San Jose leads Calgary 3-2. This has been an extremely well-played and exciting series. San Jose's key players stepped it up last night with Marleau, Thornton, and Cheechoo all getting on the board. Calgary's a tenacious team, and I get the feeling that the series will go back to game 7.


I felt that this would be the most competitive series from the outset of the first round and it has been all that. San Jose has gotten top shelf play from Nabokov and has met a stiff challenge from a Flames attack that has been formidable all season. I called for the Sharks to win at home in seven. Looks like it'll be a close call.

Skating Tripods wrote:Colorado leads Minnesota 3-2. Colorado should end this series at home. I'm surprised that Jose Theodore has played so well. He's outshined Backstrom and they've scored just enough goals to take a series lead. I expect it to be over in 6.


Theodore (and, BTW, I totally forgot that he was the guy for the Avs down the stretch) has gotten stronger as the stakes have risen. He's never looked better and his team responded in kind. I have said all along that the Avs have a very well coached operation and will be a tough out when that happens, assuming it will.

Skating Tripods wrote:Dallas leads Anaheim 3-1. Dallas's Marty Turco has really stepped up for this series. He's finally playing in the postseason like he's capable of. I don't think it will be over till game six, though. Anaheim's shutdown line is playing poorly and guys like Getzlaf and Selanne aren't carrying the offense. Dallas is playing a great team game, even without top defenseman Sergei Zubov.


I didn't realize that no Cup Champion had advanced past the first round of the playoffs since 2002. Appears likely at this point that trend will continue, but the Stars need to win at home tonight. The Ducks have shown signs of wear this year, but it's looking more pronounced in the Dallas series. Dallas appears to have solved their first round doldrums, but let's see whether they have enough to keep it up against stronger competition going forward.
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Unread postby Rally Squirl » Sun Apr 20, 2008 8:51 pm

well the leafs sucked and the wild are done.......

how many days till the opener for the 08-09 season :lol:

the leafs should be fun to watch these next few years, they are going to attempt to rip apart the team and bring over all the Euro studs they have, some of them havealready played, so im excited.

cant wait to see Tlusty, Kulemin, Earl, Williams, Stralman, etc for 82 games, gotta get the Center Ice package for sure
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Unread postby skatingtripods » Sun Apr 20, 2008 8:54 pm

buckeyehoppy wrote:With Knuble gone, the Caps now have an opening. Will Ovechkin take advantage? He had a stellar season, but has disappeared in the playoffs. And why do European players do, at times, what Ovechkin has done in this series. The Caps probably would be in a position to win if it wasn't for #8's vanishing act.


I don't think that Ovechkin's vanished. He was marvelous in game four, he just didn't score. Knuble's been excellent in the series.

European players usually play a softer style game and, therefore, can't make as much of an impact. They aren't going to win 50/50 pucks and they certainly won't be able to outwork opposing defensemen to get offensive chances.


I didn't figure that it would take six games for the Wings to close out the Preds. Are they putting on their annual folding act in the tournament after a killer regular season? Osgood should get the nod for the remainder of their tournament, but their next test should prove to be much more daunting. The winner of the Stars/Ducks tie should push the Wings past their comfort zone in every way.


Dan Ellis was magnificent. He singlehandedly gave them a chance in game five.

I don't think the Wings are folding. Hasek was pretty bad in games three and four. Chelios is dead weight in a uniform. His passes are into people's skates, he's bending over on his stick after every shift, it's time to get him out of the lineup and let Kindl or Ericsson play.
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Unread postby buckeyehoppy » Sun Apr 20, 2008 10:25 pm

Skating Tripods wrote:
buckeyehoppy wrote:With Knuble gone, the Caps now have an opening. Will Ovechkin take advantage? He had a stellar season, but has disappeared in the playoffs. And why do European players do, at times, what Ovechkin has done in this series. The Caps probably would be in a position to win if it wasn't for #8's vanishing act.


I don't think that Ovechkin's vanished. He was marvelous in game four, he just didn't score. Knuble's been excellent in the series.

European players usually play a softer style game and, therefore, can't make as much of an impact. They aren't going to win 50/50 pucks and they certainly won't be able to outwork opposing defensemen to get offensive chances.


I didn't figure that it would take six games for the Wings to close out the Preds. Are they putting on their annual folding act in the tournament after a killer regular season? Osgood should get the nod for the remainder of their tournament, but their next test should prove to be much more daunting. The winner of the Stars/Ducks tie should push the Wings past their comfort zone in every way.


Dan Ellis was magnificent. He singlehandedly gave them a chance in game five.

I don't think the Wings are folding. Hasek was pretty bad in games three and four. Chelios is dead weight in a uniform. His passes are into people's skates, he's bending over on his stick after every shift, it's time to get him out of the lineup and let Kindl or Ericsson play.


I'm NOT a Wings fan at all, but they will be even more imposing once the rest of their future HOFers hang up the skates. Chelios and Hasek have little, if anything, left and they aren't doing the Wings any favors staying around.

With Ovechkin, to be fair, this is his first trip to the dance as well. At this point, Philly has to lose both of the last two so it doesn't look good for the Caps. But the trip to the tournament will be valuable for them. They are definitely a team in play for next year, especially considering that they are coming out of the Southeast.
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Unread postby buckeyehoppy » Sun Apr 20, 2008 10:58 pm

Rally Squirl wrote:well the leafs sucked and the wild are done.......

how many days till the opener for the 08-09 season :lol:

the leafs should be fun to watch these next few years, they are going to attempt to rip apart the team and bring over all the Euro studs they have, some of them havealready played, so im excited.

cant wait to see Tlusty, Kulemin, Earl, Williams, Stralman, etc for 82 games, gotta get the Center Ice package for sure


The Leafs have to do something. They have already replaced the GM and Maurice should be gone any day now.

Lots of dead weight on that team, so the time is now to clean house. They have it a little easier in that they are in the East, but the conference is improving every year and they don't want to be caught flat-footed.

The Leafs have hovered around the fringe for a while, so it's about time they realized that "put up" time happened at least a couple years ago. Better late to the party than not at all.
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Unread postby skatingtripods » Sun Apr 20, 2008 11:31 pm

What a phenomenal performance by the Stars tonight in their own building to eliminate the Ducks. The National Hockey League will crown a new champion this June.

Calgary forces game 7 with a 2-0 win over the Sharks.
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Unread postby buckeyehoppy » Mon Apr 21, 2008 12:44 am

Skating Tripods wrote:What a phenomenal performance by the Stars tonight in their own building to eliminate the Ducks. The National Hockey League will crown a new champion this June.

Calgary forces game 7 with a 2-0 win over the Sharks.


As advertised, the Calgary/San Jose series has proven to be the best of the first round.

For me, if the Western Finals ended up being San Jose and Dallas, that would be an awesome series. Both teams are chomping at the bit to win it all and they are both veteran laden. That would be a monster series.
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Unread postby skatingtripods » Mon Apr 21, 2008 9:23 pm

There you go buckeye. Still 7 mins left, but Ovechkin has the go-ahead goal and the insurance goal in the third period for the Caps, trying to force game seven.

What a howitzer for his second goal. He's got the best one-timer in the league, bar none.
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Unread postby Rally Squirl » Mon Apr 21, 2008 9:33 pm

Let the Brian Burke to Toronto talks begin

http://chat.mapleleafs.com/index.php?showtopic=77593

that be nice to get a GM that knows hockey from a hole in the ground

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Unread postby skatingtripods » Mon Apr 21, 2008 9:41 pm

Book it. Two game sevens tomorrow night.

WSH/PHI on Vs. at 7 p.m.; SJ/CGY at 10 p.m. on Vs.


My night starts at 7 p.m. to watch the live Versus stream broadcast of Caps/Flyers, while keeping one ear on the Indians/Royals at 8, followed by Deadliest Catch at 9, where I somehow develop a third ear and another eye, then SJ/CGY at 10 while the Indians game plugs onward.
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Unread postby buckeyehoppy » Tue Apr 22, 2008 8:59 pm

Skating Tripods wrote:There you go buckeye. Still 7 mins left, but Ovechkin has the go-ahead goal and the insurance goal in the third period for the Caps, trying to force game seven.

What a howitzer for his second goal. He's got the best one-timer in the league, bar none.


I've got the Caps in a pool I'm in, winning in seven. So, it's about time he showed up.

As I write this, the Caps/Flyers series has 20 minutes left and is tied. Going down to the wire. Ovechkin has the 2nd tally for the Caps. They need to come through at home.
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Unread postby buckeyehoppy » Tue Apr 22, 2008 9:08 pm

buckeyehoppy wrote:
Skating Tripods wrote:There you go buckeye. Still 7 mins left, but Ovechkin has the go-ahead goal and the insurance goal in the third period for the Caps, trying to force game seven.

What a howitzer for his second goal. He's got the best one-timer in the league, bar none.


I've got the Caps in a pool I'm in, winning in seven. So, it's about time he showed up.

As I write this, the Caps/Flyers series has 20 minutes left and is tied. Going down to the wire. Ovechkin has the 2nd tally for the Caps. They need to come through at home.


P.S. And had an assist on the 1st goal. Was on the river for the even strength goal for the Flyers. Biron had an assist on that one (OK)! And assist by the goalie not horribly uncommon, but still rare.
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Unread postby buckeyehoppy » Tue Apr 22, 2008 10:11 pm

As Woody Hayes would say: "Oh, well, shit!!!"

The Flyers won and my pool just screwed the pooch.

Thanks Crapitals!
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Unread postby buckeyehoppy » Tue Apr 22, 2008 11:20 pm

I'm gonna have to sweat out the goddam Sharks, too?

C'mon Nabokov you lame ass!!!
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Unread postby JodyGerutsGhost » Wed Apr 23, 2008 2:24 pm

It was a excellent first round, and I guess if you didn't hear, Olaf Kolzig took his nameplate off his locker at the Verizon Center....this is a sign to come. I see Washington going with Huet as there starter next season, and Kolzig will most likely leave.

I can't see him retiring, as he still will want to show teams he can still start. But I could see him signing in Germany next year, and playing in the DEL league for the next couple of seasons....

But the 2nd round will be fun. Colorado/Detroit and Dallas/San Jose will be excellent series to watch, and the east could shape up for a Briere-Drury ECF (for the Sabres fans to look at and be mad) or a Crosby back to Quebec ECF. All good storylines as well.
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Unread postby skatingtripods » Wed Apr 23, 2008 2:28 pm

With the second round matchups being set, I'll refrain from clogging the main page and post my thoughts here.


1. Montreal v. 6. Philadelphia

Montreal nearly choked away a 3-1 lead against Boston and had to rely on a game seven win at home to end the Bruins season. Philadelphia, meanwhile, also blew a 3-1 lead to win the series on the road with an overtime PP goal.

Special teams will be the theme of this series. Philadelphia took some very undisciplined penalties during the Washington series and Montreal has a good powerplay.

I still think Montreal has the advantage in net, but Philadelphia got some great play from guys like Timonen and Coburn in the first round, so I'm a little higher on their D than Montreal's.

Flyers in 6.


2. Pittsburgh v. 5 New York Rangers

This will be a highly entertaining series. I really like the Penguins, but they're going to have to solve Henrik Lundqvist to win the series. The Pens and Rangers have both had quite a bit of time off, and that certainly helps the Penguins with a banged up Sidney Crosby and Gary Roberts.

New York, as I mentioned, has a huge advantage in net with Henrik Lundqvist. I don't think home ice will benefit them against a veteran Rangers team.

Because of the advantage in net, though Pittsburgh has a better top 6 on D, I'm going to go with the Rangers here. I like both teams' forward depth, but the Rangers have a Swedish brick wall in net, while I'm not sold on Marc-Andre Fleury.

Rangers in 6.



1. Detroit v. 6. Colorado

A throwback to the epic Detroit v. Colorado barnburners of the mid-90s. Some of the culprits still remain including McCarty, Lidstrom, and Holmstrom for Detroit while Colorado still has Sakic, Foote, and Forsberg.

Both teams were tested in their opening six-game series, with Colorado ending it at home and Detroit steamrolling into Nashville when Chris Osgood took the reins.

I like Colorado's forward depth, but they are no match for Detroit's excellent top 6. Detroit also has the advantage in net.

Red Wings in 6.

2. San Jose v. 5. Dallas

This is my favorite series of the second round. Two teams notorious for underachieving in the postseason. Dallas, coming off a six game win over the defending Stanley Cup champions, will be faced with the tough task of slowing down San Jose's solid offense. San Jose was taken to seven games by Calgary, and really benefitted from Jeremy Roenick's resurgence in game seven.

Both of these teams are so evenly matched. This might be the series where we see the epic 3-4 OT game.

I like Dallas here. I know it's going to sound crazy, but the way that they played team defense against Anaheim is the exact gameplan they should keep for this series. Holding Anaheim to under 15 shots in game six, for a team that should have been playing balls-to-the-wall is nothing short of remarkable. Assuming Dallas steals one of the first two, or both as they did to Anaheim, I really like their chances.

Dallas in 6.


The second round starts on Thursday night.
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Unread postby skatingtripods » Wed Apr 23, 2008 2:30 pm

JodyGerutsGhost wrote:It was a excellent first round, and I guess if you didn't hear, Olaf Kolzig took his nameplate off his locker at the Verizon Center....this is a sign to come. I see Washington going with Huet as there starter next season, and Kolzig will most likely leave.


I know that Kolzig was vehemently against being traded because one of his children is in the D.C. area receiving medical treatment for some sort of illness.

I really can't see him going to play overseas unless his/her condition has improved. I think that the Caps tried to move him, but he vetoed any proposed deal with his NTC. I think they felt that they owed it to him to give him a chance to play.

At times, in that series, I think that he could have outshined Huet. But, they weren't going to take Huet out of that role and risk damaging his confidence going forward.
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Unread postby JodyGerutsGhost » Wed Apr 23, 2008 3:43 pm

Skating Tripods wrote:
JodyGerutsGhost wrote:It was a excellent first round, and I guess if you didn't hear, Olaf Kolzig took his nameplate off his locker at the Verizon Center....this is a sign to come. I see Washington going with Huet as there starter next season, and Kolzig will most likely leave.


I know that Kolzig was vehemently against being traded because one of his children is in the D.C. area receiving medical treatment for some sort of illness.

I really can't see him going to play overseas unless his/her condition has improved. I think that the Caps tried to move him, but he vetoed any proposed deal with his NTC. I think they felt that they owed it to him to give him a chance to play.

At times, in that series, I think that he could have outshined Huet. But, they weren't going to take Huet out of that role and risk damaging his confidence going forward.


Had no clue on his child's condition. In that case, it would most likely be of the options you listed.

But I thought they were correct in keeping Huet in there because he was the goalie they played when they made the push, and you gotta stick to your guns.
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Unread postby buckeyehoppy » Wed Apr 23, 2008 10:00 pm

JodyGerutsGhost wrote:
Skating Tripods wrote:
JodyGerutsGhost wrote:It was a excellent first round, and I guess if you didn't hear, Olaf Kolzig took his nameplate off his locker at the Verizon Center....this is a sign to come. I see Washington going with Huet as there starter next season, and Kolzig will most likely leave.


I know that Kolzig was vehemently against being traded because one of his children is in the D.C. area receiving medical treatment for some sort of illness.

I really can't see him going to play overseas unless his/her condition has improved. I think that the Caps tried to move him, but he vetoed any proposed deal with his NTC. I think they felt that they owed it to him to give him a chance to play.

At times, in that series, I think that he could have outshined Huet. But, they weren't going to take Huet out of that role and risk damaging his confidence going forward.


Had no clue on his child's condition. In that case, it would most likely be of the options you listed.

But I thought they were correct in keeping Huet in there because he was the goalie they played when they made the push, and you gotta stick to your guns.


I think Kolzig still has game enough to start for a team in the NHL.

I don't know if there will be any contenders among the teams bidding for him.

But, somehow, I could see him in Chicago. It's arguably a young Chicago team and perhaps the inexperience of the defense has affected Khabibulin. OTOH, Khabibulin has looked lost and doesn't appear to be the goalie he's been in the past.

We'll see, but Kolzig is still pretty sharp most of the time between the pipes.
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Unread postby buckeyehoppy » Wed Apr 23, 2008 11:55 pm

The Eastern Conference

1. Montreal Canadians vs. 6. Philadelphia Flyers

This pits two teams who were not playoff teams last season and both almost tapped out in Round 1 this year. But their first round wins show the resiliency of both squads and it somewhat validated Montreal's move at the trade deadline to move Cristobal Huet in favor of Carey Price.

It also validated the moves the Flyers made in the off-season. The first round series was highlighted by Daniel Briere and his six goal performance in the first round. Money well spent by the Flyers.

I still feel there is an ex-factor in the Habs #1 seed, however, and the strength of the Habs attack combined with Price's emergence as an up-and-coming star goalie will be too much for a Flyers team that takes too many undisciplined penalties.

This is another matchup for Montreal that has favorable history in that they swept four games against the Flyers in the regular season. And while that nearly backfired in their win against Boston, the challenge here will make them stronger after not getting killed in the opening round.

Prediction: Montreal in 7

2. Pittsburgh Penguins vs. 5. New York Rangers

It's the new guard against the old guard in this series and while the Rangers are loaded with veteran talent and backed by an absolute stud in Henrik Lundqvist, they have yet to sniff the Stanley Cup finals as a team.

Surely they are thinking about winning. The meter is running on many of the star careers of the Rangers. Not the least of which is Jaromir Jagr who, ironically, lifted the Cup as a much younger man with the team he'll be facing in the second round, the Penguins.

The Pens may be young, but savvy trade deadline activity to bring in Marian Hossa and getting a now healthy Gary Roberts in the lineup has given youngsters like Malkin, Malone, and budding superstar Sidney Crosby the veteran leadership and guidance to boost their games to the next level.

The Pens have had a long layoff after dominating an Ottawa team that appeared to play like deer staring into headlights. The Rangers, too, have sat a spell since dumping the Devils and future HOF goalie Martin Brodeur.

But the Pens are more than just the new kids on the block. They have really come together in the last month and are, arguably, the hottest team in the tournament right now. Will Jagr, Lundqvist and company have the game and the legs to keep up with a young Pens side and a goalie in Marc-Andre Fleury who has returned from the injured list with a Superman "S" on his chest?

Just a hunch, but having home ice might just be enough to get these Pens kids past the wily vets of the Rangers, whose Stanley Cup dreams will still seem far away.

Prediction: Pittsburgh in 6

The Western Conference

1. Detroit Red Wings vs. 6. Colorado Avalanche

Detroit and Colorado was like Spy vs. Spy in the late 1990s and early 2000s. But it has been six seasons since these two teams have last met in the playoffs. Will the bad blood that boiled between these two squads back then be renewed now?

It's a much different time in 2008. Detroit won the President's Trophy leading the league with 115 points in the regular season. Colorado, a year separated from being the most successful team to never qualify, is still trying to prove they belong in the elite eight of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Getting Forsberg and Foote back to the Avalanche has been a stroke of genius to a young team who has defied the odds all year and are now facing an elite side from the Motor City.

The Avs have had the bonus of a stepped up level of play from goalie Jose Theodore. He was stellar in the first round series against Minnesota. But the Wings are eager to step away from the shadow of the veteran laden teams of the past few years that promised so much yet fell so far short.

And the Red Wings are almost there. Yeah, there are still the Drapers, Lidstroms, Maltbys and Osgoods here. But the talent that has developed behind that is emerging and is nearly ready to take the mantel of leadership from the old guard.

The Avs are much like the Pens in that they have a good blend of youth and experience working for them. And they are coached by the most underrated coach in the league in Quenneville. But the overall strength and timely play of a Red Wings team will prove to be too much for the Avs in what promises to be an emotional reunion of a once tense playoff rivalry.

Prediction: Detroit in 7

2. San Jose Sharks vs. 5. Dallas Stars

These two teams are both trying to shed the deserved image of playoff chokers. There is a track record on both sides that finds both squads guilty as charged.

Yet, one will emerge from this series among the final four teams playing for the most time honored trophy in the Western Hemisphere.

Dallas slew the dragon that was the defending Cup champion Anaheim Ducks in six games, taking the first two on Anaheim's home ice. San Jose won the knock down, drag out brawl that was their series with Calgary.

This series promises to be every bit as intense as the San Jose/Calgary series and these teams are as equally matched as any two in the tournament.

But Dallas is finally getting elite post-season play from long time goalie Marty Turco and the Stars blue line gave the defending champions fits for six games. The Dallas gray beards of Barnes and Modano are salty and Richards has proven to be a key piece of the puzzle for the Stanley Cup hopes in the Lone Star State.

The Sharks are loaded and adding Campbell at the trade deadline has proven to be a great move. They have the team assembled to skate with Lord Stanley in June. Yet, we have seen this picture before in the Silicon Valley.

The same gutsy play that allowed the Stars to bounce the defending champs will need to repeat itself against the Sharks. But, as big as the monkey is on Dallas' back. San Jose is being abused by a gorilla at this point. Do they have enough to fend off the challenge from Dallas that they so formidably turned away from a gritty Calgary club?

Dallas has slain one goliath and are poised to off another in the Sharks. They are the underdogs, but this team appears to be playing as if they won't be denied.

Prediction: Dallas in 6
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Unread postby JodyGerutsGhost » Thu Apr 24, 2008 1:46 pm

buckeyehoppy wrote:
JodyGerutsGhost wrote:
Skating Tripods wrote:
JodyGerutsGhost wrote:It was a excellent first round, and I guess if you didn't hear, Olaf Kolzig took his nameplate off his locker at the Verizon Center....this is a sign to come. I see Washington going with Huet as there starter next season, and Kolzig will most likely leave.


I know that Kolzig was vehemently against being traded because one of his children is in the D.C. area receiving medical treatment for some sort of illness.

I really can't see him going to play overseas unless his/her condition has improved. I think that the Caps tried to move him, but he vetoed any proposed deal with his NTC. I think they felt that they owed it to him to give him a chance to play.

At times, in that series, I think that he could have outshined Huet. But, they weren't going to take Huet out of that role and risk damaging his confidence going forward.


Had no clue on his child's condition. In that case, it would most likely be of the options you listed.

But I thought they were correct in keeping Huet in there because he was the goalie they played when they made the push, and you gotta stick to your guns.


I think Kolzig still has game enough to start for a team in the NHL.

I don't know if there will be any contenders among the teams bidding for him.

But, somehow, I could see him in Chicago. It's arguably a young Chicago team and perhaps the inexperience of the defense has affected Khabibulin. OTOH, Khabibulin has looked lost and doesn't appear to be the goalie he's been in the past.

We'll see, but Kolzig is still pretty sharp most of the time between the pipes.


Khabby has a high cap number next season ($6.750 for 08-09), and I doubt they want to add another older goalie. He'd have to take a huge pay cut from his 07-08 salary to make it work, so it's hard to think about him in Chicago.

Plus, I doubt Chicago wants to pay Khabibulin nearly $7 Million to sit on the bench.

The Kings may be another option, as anything is a better option besides Cloutier/LaBabera and crew. They have Jonathon Bernier, who played a few games early on for the Kings, and they may want to bring in a veteran to spot some starts in his place.

But other then a few teams, Kozlig may either a) retire, or b) depending on his son's health, head to Germany. Some team will give him some cash to come there. He'd also be viewed big there since he is the goalie for Germany in the World Championships and Olympics. To have one of there own in the top German league can be huge for the DEL, who settles with signing AHL vets like Francis Methot and Chris Taylor...

I can see the DEL being in Kolzig's future.
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Unread postby buckeyehoppy » Fri Apr 25, 2008 10:15 pm

JodyGerutsGhost wrote:Khabby has a high cap number next season ($6.750 for 08-09), and I doubt they want to add another older goalie. He'd have to take a huge pay cut from his 07-08 salary to make it work, so it's hard to think about him in Chicago.

Plus, I doubt Chicago wants to pay Khabibulin nearly $7 Million to sit on the bench.

The Kings may be another option, as anything is a better option besides Cloutier/LaBabera and crew. They have Jonathon Bernier, who played a few games early on for the Kings, and they may want to bring in a veteran to spot some starts in his place.

But other then a few teams, Kozlig may either a) retire, or b) depending on his son's health, head to Germany. Some team will give him some cash to come there. He'd also be viewed big there since he is the goalie for Germany in the World Championships and Olympics. To have one of there own in the top German league can be huge for the DEL, who settles with signing AHL vets like Francis Methot and Chris Taylor...

I can see the DEL being in Kolzig's future.


That will probably be the case.

I don't see much of a market for him because lots of teams have young GKs that they've committed to developing and playing. Columbus doesn't need him (among other teams) and he would come with too high a price tag to be a backup under most teams salary caps.

Kolzig has had a damned good career in DC, but you have to wonder how much he has left in the tank?
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Unread postby buckeyehoppy » Sat May 03, 2008 1:53 pm

A few thoughts on the second round to this point:

Montreal and Philadelphia
I don't see this series making it past game six in Philly. Biron has raised the level of his game and the Montreal attack has not had the answer.

As I said before with regards to Briere, it was money well spent by the Flyers FO. He has also had plenty of help from Richards, Lupul, and Umberger, among others.

Montreal has come unglued in this series and a comeback from being down 3-1 seems to be a pipe dream at this point, but it isn't 100% out of the question.

Pittsburgh and NY Rangers
The Pens are perhaps the best balanced team left in this tournament. They also have several ways to beat you and that is what the veteran Rangers are finding out.

Pittsburgh is the team that no one really wants to face right now. They are young and filled with confidence. Kind of remind me of the 1995 Indians in that they really have nothing to lose and they are playing flat out great on their first two lines. Fleury is also giving them lots of competence in the net and their blue line has been down right dogged in getting after the Rangers attack.

Detroit and Colorado
Colorado simply looked lost in this series. Mind you, Detroit can make most teams look that way. But the Wings have combined a fairly tenacious attack with solid goalkeeping by Osgood.

The key to Detroit's success in the conference finals will be to keep playing as they have, but to steel themselves against the relentless pressure that either Dallas or San Jose is expected to bring on the Wings blue liners.

Detroit has played as well as anyone in the tournament thus far and are playing with the kind of swagger that is typical of most Red Wings teams of modern vintage.

San Jose and Dallas
San Jose has been doing everything they can to fight off their backs here, but I don't see them leaving Dallas still alive in this hunt.

Granted, Turco basically gift wrapped Friday's comeback win for the Sharks but short of a wholesale meltdown the Stars should have enough to carry through this round to match up with Detroit in the conference final.

Dallas should be a formidable challenge for the Wings, but they will need to guard against a letdown like the one they have had the last two games against the Sharks. That kind of lapse in play and the Wings will eat the Stars for lunch.
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Unread postby skatingtripods » Mon May 05, 2008 12:06 pm

What a thriller last night between Dallas and San Jose. The Stars won on a powerplay goal in the 4th OT period by captain Brendan Morrow, who played an outstanding game. It was the 5th longest game in modern era playoff history.

Dallas now meets Detroit for the Western Conference Final, while Pittsburgh and Philadelphia square off in the East.
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Unread postby buckeyehoppy » Mon May 05, 2008 7:19 pm

Too bad I had to be up at 6:00 a.m....needless to say, I missed the end of the Stars/Sharks marathon.

Lakewood sucks because I wouldn't have seen the end had I wanted to because their primary cable server doesn't carry Versus. Granted, there are ways that you can get around that, but Versus has carried the NHL for three years now and SucksCox Cable hasn't seen fit to bring Versus into its programming package.

Now, onward to the Conference finals:

Pittsburgh vs. Philadelphia

The Flyers are the cinderella story of this year's tournament. From worst team in the league last season to the final four is a very good accomplishment by any standard of measure.

Still, the Flyers have had the good fortune to be paired with teams in their draw that carry a similar profile: young, inexperienced playoff qualifiers whose best days are not yet here but they will be around in seasons to come with any luck.

The Penguins aren't inexperienced where the playoffs are concerned, but are still fairly young and they pose a challenge to the Flyers that they have yet to see in their first 12 games in these playoffs. The Pens are quick and are playing at a level that doesn't even compare to the level of the two clubs the Flyers have dispatched.

It's not likely that even on the best day that the Flyers will be able to match the overall speed of the Penguins attack. The Pens have also been murder on the power play and the Flyers simply draw too many penalties to not factor the Pens PP into the equation.

The Flyers do match well with the Pens head-to-head and won the season series 5-3. But the regular season is over and facing the same team night in and night out tends to bring skeletons out of the closet.

The Flyers are simply too close to their recent failings to expect that they will be able to give the Pens much more than a token challenge at this point in the tournament.

Prediction: Pittsburgh in 5

Detroit vs. Dallas

This matchup has all the makings of a classic. Dallas has dispatched two strong veteran playoff squads in succession, including the defending Cup champions.

Dallas has had its share of disappointment in this tournament in recent years, but they have taken command early and often in several games thus far. The Stars, finally, seem to be playing to their veteran standing.

Enter the Red Wings, the poster children of veteran standing. This year, the Wings have looked sensational and have lived up to their top billing coming in to the playoffs.

Now, the Wings have hardly seen top shelf competition to this point. This is hardly Detroit's fault as this is the way the NHL now structures its rounds to have the top seeds face the lowest seeds through progressing rounds. Nevertheless, the Wings have handled both teams they have eliminated with a fair helping of haste.

That won't happen here. The Stars blue line has been potent and can certainly meet the challenge of even the stiffest Wings attack. But the Wings are statistically dominant and have so many weapons that even a stout Stars defense may not be enough.

This series is an extremely close call, but I get the feeling that the Stars have a truckload of momentum after running the California connection out of the tournament. And the Wings, as I have mentioned, have not faced much of a challenge to date in these playoffs. That may be enough of a difference here. The Stars have had an ax to grind throughout the playoffs based on recent post-season failures. This will be a huge dragon to slay, but the Stars have already beaten two formidable clubs in succession.

Prediction: Dallas in 6
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Unread postby JodyGerutsGhost » Mon May 05, 2008 8:59 pm

Me and a few buddies discussed our predictions for the 2007-2008 season. And to this day, I can't believe I drank the kool-aid on the New York Rangers. I still thought they had a chance to beat Pittsburgh too....

I was wrong.

Dallas has surprised me, mainly because they went from being such a mess to start the season to being one of the hottest teams in the league. Brendon Morrow was balls out last night, and they have a challenge ahead of them, facing the Detroit Red Wings.

I like the chances of Dallas though, and I agree with Tripods assessment. If the Stars play with the passion they have shown, they should advance to the Stanley Cup Finals in 6.

The Flyers/Penguins series will be different. The Flyers need to play disciplined, because they can't afford to play against a lethal power play like Pittsburgh's. Danny Briere has been phenomenal in the playoffs, and it should continue. They are riding a horse of momentum heading into the series, but Pittsburgh is the odds on favorite, due to there snipers and there play in the playoffs.

Pittsburgh may be too much for Philly to handle, but Philly won't go down without a fight, and I can see the Flyers stretching it into seven games. Pittsburgh may be way too much for them to handle, and I can see the Penguins embarrassing them in Game 7, and heading to the cup finals against Dallas.
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Unread postby skatingtripods » Mon May 05, 2008 10:43 pm

Man, I got Dallas in 6 right on. Flyers in 5 (my pick was 6), Rangers didn't show up at all, and I was right about Detroit, just two games too many.
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Conference Finals

Unread postby CLEfan86 » Sat May 10, 2008 2:31 am

Home teams hold serve in both conferences, Red Wings and Penguins each up 1-0.

A Detroit/Pittsburgh final would be awesome. A couple of my buddies down at Dayton have a "Who will win their next Cup sooner" bet on the line. (Between PIT and DET) Both of them being there at the same time would sure make things interesting.
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Unread postby buckeyehoppy » Tue May 13, 2008 10:50 pm

Pittsburgh and Detroit are both poised for four game sweeps after the Pens win tonight.

This should be a very good finals and I am no longer assuming that it is happening because it will. The Pens are making my pick for this round look as good as the Wings are making it look bad. Guess I shouldn't have thought Detroit was beatable, huh?

Well, anyhoo, I am looking forward to the finals and think this will be a great matchup. An old-guard team that is getting younger but still has plenty of veteran presence against the new kids on the block who are gaining confidence by the round.

If it pans out, the Pittsburgh/Detroit pairing reminds me very much of the Tribe's WS run in 1995. Don't know if the outcome will be similar, but the dynamic is roughly the same when you compare the teams.
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Unread postby buckeyehoppy » Sun May 18, 2008 5:14 pm

With one period left, it looks like the Pens ticket to the Cup Finals will be punched first, short of a meltdown of epic proportions in the 3rd.

Dallas is giving this series a go, but I don't see how they go back to Detroit and win a Game 7 if they win on Monday at home. Detroit has been more than formidable and are showing the prowess they showed early in the season when they jumped out to such a huge lead.

I think the finals begin next Saturday night, no matter how the Conference finals shake out.
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Unread postby Cerebral_DownTime » Mon May 19, 2008 4:34 pm

I just wanna say this about the Red Wings: They have the best FO in sports. Every year they draft and scout well (Franzen, Datsyuk, and Zetteberg ) they put a legit contender on the ice year in and year out. They take retreads and put them in a system that alows them to florish.
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Unread postby skatingtripods » Tue May 20, 2008 12:56 pm

Cerebral_DownTime wrote:I just wanna say this about the Red Wings: They have the best FO in sports. Every year they draft and scout well (Franzen, Datsyuk, and Zetteberg ) they put a legit contender on the ice year in and year out. They take retreads and put them in a system that alows them to florish.


Mike Babcock is also an outstanding coach.

You're absolutely right, CD. They draft well, they scout well, and they definitely know how to appeal to the right veterans. They've also got a few sound defensemen in Ericsson and Kindl in Grand Rapids ready to take over for Chelios. They're not as deep at forward, but golden boy goaltender Jimmy Howard is still in Grand Rapids and he's really being cockblocked right now by Hasek.

The key for them is that they don't throw their draft picks around at the deadline like some teams do so they can keep refilling their system.

It also helps to have the best overall defenseman in the game in Nick Lidstrom. Watching that guy makes me wish I had 1/100 of his talent.
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