2009 second round predictions

I never did post my first round eastern conference predictions. Oh well, this thing called “work” keeps keeping me busy. Some pretty good hockey, though.

But in the West, I chose San jose (bah), Detroit, Vancouver and Chicago, going 3 for 4. of course, the one I got wrong went seriously wrong. bah.

So the second round starts tonight and here’s a quick look at my picks.

In the East, two really good series brewing:

Carolina squeaked by New Jersey, but played a good game of hockey to get into the position of being ready for the opportunity to put a kill-shot on the Devils. They’re going to give Boston a run for the money, and they could well win if Boston isn’t on its best game. Beware the “playing with the house’s money” mentality here. But Boston should win the series, although it won’t be easy: Boston in 6.

Pittsburgh vs Washington?  Fun series to watch. I’m going to have to give the nod to Pittsburgh, because a big question here is goaltending and whether the Caps baby goalie can keep it up. If he can, then Washington has a real shot here. If not? I’ll take the Pens. So Pens in 6.

Out west?

Vancouver vs. Chicago — Going to be a fast, up-tempo, physical war, I think. Both teams are playing well, both teams have goalies that can win a series and stone the opposition, both teams have some strong offensive power. It could go either way; I’m going to vote for Vancouver because of the Luongo factor, but I wouldn’t count Chicago out. Canucks in 7.

Detroit/Anaheim: The Ducks kicked San Jose’s butt. Their reward? Detroit. Speaking of war. This may be the series that decides the Cup, because whoever wins this should come out of the West into the final. But will they be so beaten up so badly they can’t handle two more rounds of hockey? In any event, I will bet on the Ducks and Hiller over the Wings and Osgood. Maybe seeing the Ducks go another round or two might make their beating the Sharks more palatable. Maybe. No, probably not. Ducks in 6.

So right now, I’m thinking Boston/Anaheim in the final. But all of the teams are good and all of the teams have a serious chance into the next round. It could go anywhere from here.