Going to take a day or two before I get back into the Blackhawks. I’ve got to let the anger and disappointment subside before I can write objective reviews. The Eastern Conference is helping me forget about the Hawks by giving us three Game 7s in the next two nights. I feel as giddy as a child on the night before Christmas. There is nothing better in sports than a Game 7 in the Stanley Cup playoffs. Granted I wanted to be watching the Blackhawks playing in one tonight, but I will take what I can get. Here’s a quick look at the 3 series going to Game 7 to get you all caught up.
Boston Bruins vs Washinton Capitals
Game 1: BOS 1, WSH 0 OT
Game 2: WSH 2, BOS 1 OT
Game 3: BOS 4, WSH 3
Game 4: WSH 2, BOS 1
Game 5: WSH 4, BOS 3
Game 6: BOS 4, WSH 3 OT
Game 7: Tonight 6:30 PM in Boston
The Bruins are no strangers to Game 7s. This will be the 4th series out of their last 5 to go to a seventh game. This has been a back and fourth series where the Caps will try and win their 3rd game in Boston. In any other season I would say that wouldn’t happen, but this year has shown that home ice means absolutely nothing. It is hard to pick against Tim Thomas but the Caps’ Braden Holtby has been up to the challenge. Thomas and Holtby each have a 2.18 GAA but Holtby has a better save percentage. Alexander Semin leads Washington with 3 goals in the series, while Rich Peverley leads the Bruins with 3 goals as well. Washington will be looking to their superstar Alex Ovechkin to lead them tonight. He leads the Caps in points with 5 (2G, 3A) in this series. Watch for Tyler Seguin to make an impact. He is coming off a huge Game 6 after scoring no points in the first five games. He had an assist on the game tying goal and scored the winner in OT.
My prediction: Boston 3, Washington 2 in 2OT
New York Rangers vs Ottawa Senators
Game 1: NYR 4, OTT 2
Game 2: OTT 3, NYR 2 OT
Game 3: NYR 1, OTT 0
Game 4: OTT 3, NYR 2 OT
Game 5: OTT 2, NYR 0
Game 6: NYR 3, OTT 2
Game 7: Thursday 6PM at New York
The Rangers will try avoid becoming the second #1 seed to get the boot in the first round. The Senators, who were one of the biggest surprises of the regular season and have carried that over into the post season. No one gave them much of chance against the Rangers and now they have a one game showdown in the Garden. This series has become quite physical and has had its fair share of controversy. Between assault and battery and goals being kicked in these two teams have provided us with a little bit of everything. Jason Spezza leads Ottawa with 5 points (3G, 2A) as his fantastic regular season has transferred to playoff success. Brian Boyle, who leads the Rangers with 3 goals will miss Game 7. I think Vezina Trophy candidate Henrik Lundqvist will stand tall on his home ice Thursday.
My Prediction: Rangers 2, Ottawa 0
Florida Panthers vs New Jersey Devils
Game 1: NJD 3, FLA 2
Game 2: FLA 4, NJD 2
Game 3: FLA 4, NJD 3
Game 4: NJD 4, FLA 0
Game 5: FLA 3, NJD 0
Game 6: NJD 3, FLA 2 OT
Game 7: Thursday 7:30 PM at Florida
This series has had me torn since Game 1 and I still don’t know who I am cheering for. I have always loved Martin Brodeur and been a fan of the Devils but it so hard to cheer against so many ex Blackhawks. I predicted this series would be very evenly matched and would go all seven. The Panthers are not quite sure who is starting in net for them on Thursday. Jose Theodore will get the start if he is healthy but he missed Game 6 due to a lower body injury. Scott Clemmensen will get the nod if Theodore can not go. Kris Versteeg and Shawn Bergenheim both lead the Panthers with 5 points (2G, 3A) and each scored in Game 6. Travis Zajac, who scored in OT of Game 6, leads the Devils with 6 points (3 G, 3 A). It is so hard to bet against Martin Brodeur in a seventh game. It is also hard to pick all three home teams with the way the first round has gone so far. With that being said I think an unlikely hero will emerge for the Devils, possibly David Clarkson.
My Prediction: Devils 3, Panthers 2