Finally, my true love is back. We have hockey ladies and gentlemen.
The MLS was great. but the dream of the NHL coming back has been the backbone for my survival these past few months, Hockey is back, it’s here, and boy do we have some spicy first round match-ups. It’s not the playoff hockey that we all know and love, which is sad for the game. The Stanley Cup Playoffs always has a sort of whimsical feel, and I don’t expect that to be any different this year.
Also, not gonna dive in to the top 4 round robin. That’s a serious crap-shoot cause I’m not sure how hard teams will go.
Hurricanes v. Rangers
With the breadman Panarin, a DEEP goaltending core, and having already the mental edge of knowing the ‘Canes were pissed they had to play the Rangers in Round 1 makes them my pick. Rangers take this series at +110.
Islanders v. Panthers
Two totally different offensive systems, and two Stanley Cup winning coaches running those systems. The Panthers are horrid defensively, but I think they have the better offense and goaltender. One who they paid ALOT of money to this summer. Gimme the Cats at +105.
Canadiens v. Penguins
How can a sane individual bet against Sidney Crosby? Pens -240 is a bit too high, and I don’t wanna pick how the series will end in terms of games. So if you want to take the risk of -240, go for it.
Blue Jackets v. Maple Leafs
We saw the Blue Jackets pull the biggest upset in hockey since the 1980 Miracle on Ice by sweeping Tampa Bay last year in the first round. Unfortunately for Torts & company, that upset ain’t happening this year. Leafs -170 for all the marbles.
Blackhawks v. Oilers
Connor McDavid, Draisaitl, and potentially no Corey Crawford ? Yeah I’ll take the Oilers heavy at -180.
Canucks v. Wild
The Wild play a very boring, fundamental style of hockey. They are going to get their chances off of Vancouver’s mistakes. Don’t think Vancouver will make enough mistakes to lose 3/5 games, taking the Canucks at -125.
Coyotes v. Predators
Although they have the best throwback jerseys in the league, they aren’t the best actual team in this one. Nashville is too deep. Also doesn’t help that the ‘Yotes just lost their GM a week before the playoffs. Preds -140.
Flames v. Jets
This is the best 1st Round match-up by far. It’s a coin toss cause both teams have talent up front, and some nice pieces at the back end. It comes down to goaltending, and Winnepieg has one of the best. Jets at EVEN odds.
Rangers +110, Panthers +105, Pens -240, Leafs -170, Oilers -170, Canucks -125, Preds -140, Jets EVEN