2013 NHL Stanley Cup Playoff Predictions

Ooh it feels a little like Christmas Eve doesn’t it?  We are on the eve of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.  As hockey fans this is what it is all about.  There is no better tournament in all of sports.  Even though this was a condensed season, hockey fans are giddy with excitement as we see some familiar match-ups and the first time since 1994 that all six original six NHL teams are in the playoffs.  (Yes even the Toronto Maple Leafs).

2013 NHL Regular Season Standings

2013 NHL Regular Season StandingsCourtesy of TSN

Here is a look at the 2013 NHL Playoff match-ups:

2013 NHL Playoff Matchups

This has been a decent season.  We have seen domination by the Chicago Blackhawks and Anaheim Ducks in the West and we have seen strong performances by the Pittsburgh Penguins and Montreal Canadiens in the East.  With four Canadian teams in the NHL playoffs. could this mark the first time since 1993 that a Canadian team hoists the Stanley Cup?  We’ll find out over the course of the next two months.

2013 NHL Stanley Cup Playoff Predictions

Last year our Stanley Cup playoff picks were a little off.  So here is a look at how we think the Playoffs are going to shake out.

Western Conference

Minnesota Wild (8) vs. Chicago Blackhawks (1)Hockey Fanatic Prediction:  Blackhawks in five games.

Detroit Red Wings (7) vs. Anaheim Ducks (2)
Hockey Fanatic Prediction: Duck in six games.

San Jose Sharks (6) vs.  Vancouver Canucks (3)
Hockey Fanatic Prediction:  I want to pick the Canucks but my gut tells me Sharks in seven games.

Los Angeles Kings (5) vs.  St. Louis Blues (4)
Hockey Fanatic Prediction: St. Louis Blues in six games.

Eastern Conference

New York Islanders (8) vs.  Pittsburgh Penguins (1)
Hockey Fanatic Prediction:  Pens in six games.

Ottawa Senators (7) vs.  Montreal Canadiens (2)
Hockey Fanatic Prediction:  Habs in seven games.

New York Rangers (6) vs.  Washington Capitals (3)
Hockey Fanatic Prediction:  New York Rangers in six games.

Toronto Maple Leafs (5) vs.  Boston Bruins (4)
Hockey Fanatic Prediction:  Bruins in six games.

Based on these predictions, the round two match-ups look like this:

Western Conference

San Jose Sharks (6) vs. Chicago Blackhawks (1)
Hockey Fanatic Prediction:  Chicago in six games.  Although if there was a team to take out the Hawks it very well could be San Jose.

St. Louis Blues (4) vs. Anaheim Ducks (2)
Hockey Fanatic Prediction:  St. Louis Blues in seven games.

Eastern Conference

New York Rangers (6) vs. Pittsburgh Penguins (1)
Hockey Fanatic Prediction: Pens in six games.

Boston Bruins (4) vs.  Montreal Canadiens (2)
Hockey Fanatic Prediction: Canadiens in seven games.

The final four look like this:

West:  St. Louis Blues (4) vs.  Chicago Blackhawks (1)
Hockey Fanatic Prediction: Chicago in six games.

East:  Montreal Canadiens (2) vs.  Pittsburgh Penguins (1)
Hockey Fanatic Prediction:  Pittsburgh Penguins in seven games.

Stanley Cup Final:  Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Chicago Blackhawks

Hockey Fanatic Prediction for Stanley Cup Champion: Chicago Blackhawks in six games.

If we had to pick a couple of dark horse teams to go to the final we would pick:

San Jose Sharks or Vancouver Canucks – West
New York Rangers or Montreal Canadiens – East

I would like to think that the Leafs could make a run, but goaltending issues may creep in.  In a shortened season anything is possible though (well except for the Edmonton Oilers making the playoffs).

Enjoy the Stanley Cup playoffs hockey fans!