Now that the second round is over the NHL has been narrowed down to the final four. My picks were not as good as they were in the first round. I never would have thought in a million years that both the Boston Bruins and Tampa Bay Lightning would sweep through their series against the Flyers and the Capitals. The Flyers just could not get any goal tending at all from their 3 goalies. I knew that would be a key in that series, because goal tending is so important in the playoffs. Tampa Bay along with Boston, have gotten great goal tending in the playoffs so far.
The only series that I picked correctly was Vancouver - Nashville, Nashville is a solid team but they just do not have the fire power to take down a team like Vancouver. I am very happy though that my pick of the Detroit Red Wongs, was wrong and they are out of the playoffs. A very entertaining series in which the San Jose Sharks took the first three games, then looked like they were going to choke again losing the next three. The Sharks were able to win at home in game 7 it was great.
Boston Bruins vs Tampa Bay Lightning - should be a great series, two great teams with great goal tending. Tim Thomas from the Boston Bruins has really given them a lift this playoff year. It is also to see that at least one of the original 6 is in the final four. Tampa Bay has many weapons on offense this year, and it will be up to Chara the Slovakian Sledgehammer and the Bruins defense to slow them down. I think this will a very close series. I think there is more experience on the Bruins side, even though they have not been in the conference finals since 1992. Boston was 3-1 against the Lightning in the regular season, including an 8-1 victory. Boston Bruins are the more physical team, if they can rough up the Lightning a bit they will be in great shape. Final line: Boston in 6.
Vancouver Canucks vs San Jose Sharks - The Sharks almost choked it up again but got past the Red Wongs in 7, they have many offensive weapons just like the Lightning. The Sharks biggest problem has been on defense and I think that led to the inability for them to close out the Red Wongs sooner. Niemi had a pretty good series but got little help. The Canucks on the other hand are the deeper of the two teams. They have Ryan Kesler playing out of his mind right now, but they have not gotten very much from the Sedin twins in the playoffs so far. Luongo is going to have to play well if he wants to keep his team in this series, he cannot have any mental setbacks like he did in the series against the Black Hawks. Final line: Vancouver in 7.
Both series should be very entertaining, even if you are just a casual fan of the NHL.