Wednesday, September 9, 2009


Like last year, and every year I bought the late August edition of the hockey news, with all their forecasts. And like last year I plan on making them look sick with my predictions. We can all remember last year when I called them out for underrating the Bruins and I picked them for first, THN picked them for 10th in the East. Now I don't wanna jinx myself here are my picks, and the picks for a special guest writer on my blog: My boy Phil, better known on the internet as 'King-Canada', he's a regular on forums, and one of the smartest hockey guys out there.

Scott's picks (aka, aka Mojo19) Beside my picks are THN's placement of each team.

Western Conference

1. Detroit Red Wings (4)
2. Vancouver Canucks (3)
3. San Jose Sharks (1)
4. Chicago Blackhawks (2)
5. Calgary Flames (5)
6. Los Angelas Kings (12*)
7. Edmonton Oilers (11*)
8. St.Louis Blues (9*)

9. Minnesota Wild (13)
10. Anaheim Ducks (6*)
11. Phoenix Coyotes (15)
12. Columbus Blue Jackets (8*)
13. Dallas Stars (7*)
14. Nashville Predators (10)
15. Colorado Avalanche (14)

Eastern Conference

1. Philadelphia Flyers (4)
2. Boston Bruins (1)
3. Washington Capitals (2)
4. Carolina Hurricanes (6)
5. Pittsburgh Penguins (3)
6. Toronto Maple Leafs (11*)
7. New Jersey Devils (5)
8. Tampa Bay Lightning (10*)

9. Ottawa Senators (9)
10. New York Rangers (13)
11. Atlanta Thrashers (14)
12. Montreal Canadiens (8*)
13. New York Islanders (15)
14. Buffalo Sabres (7*)
15. Florida Panthers (12)

Okay, I just want to comment on a couple of my picks that some of you may find a bit crazy.

Los Angelas - Playoffs?
Ya, I like the make up of their team. I know they only really added Ryan Smyth and he's not a 70 point man anymore, but he will be a good addition. But mostly I like the young group they have and the team leaders (Kopitar, Brown, etc.) are all pretty young. I think they'll be an improved team just 'cause.

I don't think there are any other real surpises in the West from my picks. But let's look at the wild, wild East.

Flyers first place?
Yep. Emery is a question mark, that's true. But I'm jelous of the make up of this team. Lots of weapons, lots of good two-way players, and a good mix of vets and young guns. Pronger really solidifies the back end, which was already very solid.

Champs in 5th?
Well, I could interchange the Pens and 'Canes but I think those two teams will be 4-5. Besides, I already feel that the Flyers will have a stronger season so that automatically puts Pittsburgh at 4th at best. They are a strong team, don't get me wrong. I think the top 5 teams in the East are pretty much set.

Leafs and Bolts over Habs and Rangers?
Ya, its a tough call. As always the the East has that mushy middle and it will be wide open. The difference from 6th to 11th is usually only a few wins. If you look at what Tampa and Toronto have done with their defense, you have to give them a look this year. Everyone knows I am a Leafs fan and I may be bias, and I'll admit to that. However, listening to the comments made by Burke and Wilson, the goal for Toronto is to make the playoffs and I think this could be an underrated, well coached, team that will make it. Tampa adding Ohlund and Kurtis Foster gives them some legit defense that they lacked last year, and the probability of Hedman coming in really solidifies them and gives them potential. I like their forward group on paper but they need to be organized. Also a breakout year from Steven Stamkos could be huge.

As for the Rangers, I don't like the looks of their team on paper, losing their top 3 scorers from last year (Antropov UFA, Zherdev released, and Gomez traded for Higgins. Drury was 4th in scoring then Naslund at 5th is now retired). That's a lot of weapons. I'm a huge Gaborik fan, and Kotalik will bring some secondary scoring but I think Gaborik needs to have a healthy year at his best and Lunqvist needs to do what he does best nightly to give the Rangers a chance. I can't count them out but couldn't write them in there right now. Montreal I think has a pretty solid team on paper too, and could make it. They'll be in the mix but I don't see them being better than Tampa, New Jersey, and Toronto.

Phil's picks (aka King-Canada)

Western Conference

1. Calgary Flames
2. Chicago Blackhawks
3. San Jose Sharks
4. Detroit Red Wings
5. Vancouver Canucks

6. St. Louis Blues
7. Columbus Blue Jackets
8. Anaheim Ducks

9. Dallas Stars
10. Edmonton Oilers
11. Los Angeles Kings
12. Colorado Avalanche
13. Minnesota Wild
14. Nashville Predators
15. Phoenix Coyotes

King Canada:
"The Calgary Flames got a huge boost on defense with J-BO so they are the western champs since San Jose in my opinion isn't will slightly decline due to shattered confidence. The Blackhawks will finally overtake the Red Wings as division champs with Hossa switching teams. 5-8 made it last year and I believe will make it again (good young teams, solid overall). Dallas will improve but with a weak defense corp they will miss the playoffs. LA and Colorado will improve but not enough to play in the spring. Phoenix I think everyone has been pegged by everyone to finish 30th overall...and Balsillie is willing to pay 242.5 million to buy em haha wow..some would call that charity. Bettman your an idiot!"

Eastern Conference

1. Philadelphia Flyers
2. Washington Capitals
3. Boston Bruins
4. Pittsburg Penguins
5. New Jersey Devils
6. Carolina Hurricanes
7. Florida Panthers
8. Tampa Bay Lightning

9. New York Rangers
10. Montreal Canadiens
11. Toronto Maple Leafs
12. Atlanta Thrashers
13. Ottawa Senators
14. Buffalo Sabres
15. New York Islanders

King Canada:
"The Flyers were nasty last year, this year they got the nastiest defenseman out there in Pronger so watch out for these guys. Not to mention full seasons from Briere and Giroux will cement them as the crème of the crop out East. Boston moves down because they will be without Kessel AND Krejci for 1-2 months beginning the season. This will cost them points but fortunate for them the North East division sucks. Pittsburg could have the 2nd most points overall but with Phily in their division they get shafted to 4th. Florida towards the end of the season were one of the hottest teams and I believe they will improve enough to make the post-season with a healthy Vokoun. Tampa Bay vastly improved their defence and will have a concussion free season for Mike Smith who holds the fort just enough to squeeze in. The Rangers discover that Gaborik is actually as fragile as advertised. The Habs totally revamped the roster but overpaid in the off-season for a smaller team (werent they small already?). Finally the Islanders still remain on the bottom because not even John Tavares can help this horrible team."

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