Monday, April 7, 2008


Welcome to Gregsky’s annual Playoff Picks. Each year I role the dice, spin the wheel, throw darts at a board, jump up and down (like Maggie) and do whatever it takes to beat the mainstream experts and prognostic members of the animal kingdom. In the past, I have used gypsy magic, gut feelings, magic 8-balls, etc. to carry me through round by round. This year I have a new bag of tricks to help guide me through, so keep coming back to check and see how I do and what I do to arrive at my picks each and every round. For the first round this year, I’m not pulling any punches (or any tricks out of the bag), just plain old-fashioned know-how and hoping for some luck. Last year I went 10 – 5 which was slightly better than the 9 – 6 from the previous year, so this time out I’m shooting for no worse than 11 – 4 which leaves very little room for mistakes. I hope that damn monkey has her game on this year!

Well, no tricks needed for this one. The Habs have outright owned the Bruins all year as this match-up just doesn’t match up. The Bruins work hard, but make too many mistakes in the neutral zone and have a hard time putting the puck in the net. The Canadiens on the other hand fly through the neutral zone and have no trouble with scoring. The B’s will try to play physical against the Habs in the hope to wear them down, but you can’t hit what you can’t catch. Oh yeah, then there is the goalie match-up, which is no contest. The Bruins best friend and best chance in this series is overtime. If there is to be a sweep in the first round this is it, but because of overtime I’ll give the B’s a game. MONTREAL IN 5.

Every year I pick the Sens to fold come playoff time, no offense Ottawa fans, it’s just in the genetic make-up of the team to do so. Last year though, picking against them accounted for 3 of my 5 losses so common sense should tell me to tread lightly. It should, but it’s not. This time out the Sens seemed to run out of gas at the end of the season and the goaltending has been just mediocre all year. I could go on and on about the strengths of the Pens, but see no need to do so this early. Playing in Ottawa is always tough, but the Pens should fast track through this one with the help of a shaky Gerber and the tendency to quit when they are pushed around by the star players. PITTSBURGH IN 6.

For the last couple of seasons I have been saying that the Caps are quietly building something special and are worth keeping an eye on. This year, in August, I said they would surprise everyone and become a sleeper pick come playoff time. And here we are. Ovechkin flat tore up the regular season and is about to treat us to his playoff debut. It will be interesting to see how this one plays out because the Flyers work hard for 60 minutes and make you pay the price with their physical play, something the Caps struggled with all year until the last month of the season. Working in the Caps favor is finally getting the solid goaltending they have been lacking and mixing in seasoned vets to compliment their young guns. Neither team is a powerhouse yet, but should give us a damn good series to watch. WASHINGTON IN 6.

This one has all the makings of going the distance. This one will get a ton of media hype. This one will give us multiple overtime games and in spurts will give us goaltending battles that will have us all on the edge of our seats. We just might see this series flip flopping back and forth all the way to double overtime in game 7. Marty will steal a game or two for the Devils, but the lack of scoring will lose just as many for them. The Rangers shaky defense will be exposed at points and they will pay for the mistakes, but their leadership and timely scoring will win them a few games to even it out. The second round will be waiting for this one to end. RANGERS IN 7.

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