Blog Entry

Expert Picks: Conference Quarterfinals

Posted on: April 14, 2010 12:26 pm
Edited on: April 19, 2010 11:55 pm
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We've rounded up the hockey experts (and fans) here at CBSSports.com to get their insight on which teams will survive the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs. We'll be tracking their overall record throughout the postseason, so be sure to check back after each round for results. Feel free to add your picks in the comments below.

Making picks in 2010: Wes Goldstein, CBSSports.com's hockey writer; Erin Brown, CBSSports.com's NHL editor; Mike Hurcomb,  CBSSports.com's fantasy hockey writer; and Dennis Dodd is CBSSports.com's college football writer (and a longtime, die-hard St. Louis Blues fan).

No. 1 Washington vs. No. 8 Montreal

  • Goldstein: Washington in 5: The Caps have too much firepower for a team that backed into the playoffs
  • Brown: Washington in 4: Put aside the Caps' offense; Jose Theodore will be out to get his former team.
  • Hurcomb: Washington in 5: Jaroslav Halak will make it interesting, but Caps' offense will be too much.
  • Dodd: Washington in 4: The Caps have so much firepower that it will be a huge surprise if they don't sweep.

No. 2 New Jersey vs. No. 7 Philadelphia

  • Goldstein: Philadelphia in 7: Flyers match up well against the Devils and they get stoked by this rivalry.
  • Brown: Philadelphia in 7: Coming through in the clutch has eluded Martin Brodeur lately.
  • Hurcomb: New Jersey in 6: Brodeur will erase Philadelphia's high of sneaking into playoffs.
  • Dodd: New Jersey in 5: Never bet against Brodeur, and with Ilya Kovalchuk , the Devils should coast.

No. 3 Buffalo vs. No. 6 Boston

  • Goldstein: Buffalo in 6: Thomas Vanek is on a roll and Ryan Miller is a difference maker.
  • Brown: Buffalo in 5: If an all-star Canadian squad barely beat Miller, do you really think the Bruins can?
  • Hurcomb: Buffalo in 7: Miller didn't win gold at the Olympics, but he will prevail in Game 7.
  • Dodd: Buffalo in 5: Miller is a national hero at the top of his game.

No. 4 Pittsburgh vs. No. 5 Ottawa

  • Goldstein: Pittsburgh in 7: In cruise control all season, Pens look ready to press the pedal to the metal.
  • Brown: Pittsburgh in 6: The Penguins are Red Wings-lite: their Cup-winning experience will carry them.
  • Hurcomb: Ottawa in 6: The Senators' balance helps them pull first-round upset.
  • Dodd: Ottawa in 6: Marc-Andre Fleury is not the same as he was the past two seasons.

No. 1 San Jose vs. No. 8 Colorado

  • Goldstein: San Jose in 5: As good a matchup as San Jose could hope for in round one.
  • Brown: San Jose in 6: Thanks to Dany Heatley , Joe Thornton will find his playoff game.
  • Hurcomb: San Jose in 6: Keeping Evgeni Nabokov sharp will help end Sharks' postseason woes.
  • Dodd: San Jose in 6: Colorado is too young and too inexperienced to make this a series.

No. 2 Chicago vs. No. 7 Nashville

  • Goldstein: Chicago in 6: The Hawks defense won't hurt them against an offensively-challenged opponent.
  • Brown: Chicago in 6: The Hawks will get the necessary offense and give their backend a confidence boost.
  • Hurcomb: Nashville in 7: Chicago will regret not trading for goalie at deadline.
  • Dodd: Chicago in 5: The Hawks are going to have to outscore teams and hope their goalies steal a series.

No. 3 Vancouver vs. No. 6 Los Angeles

  • Goldstein: Vancouver in  5: The Sedins and company are too much for a young team with a struggling goalie.
  • Brown: Vancouver in 6: The Kings have the talent to compete, but youth will be their ultimate downfall.
  • Hurcomb: Vancouver in 5: The Sedin twins will help make quick work of Kings.
  • Dodd: Los Angeles in 7: They've got a chance if Jonathan Quick can play like he did early in the season.

No. 4 Phoenix vs. No. 5 Detroit

  • Goldstein: Detroit in 6: Look for the clock to strike midnight on the Coyotes great Cinderella story.
  • Brown: Detroit in 6: The playoff-tested Wings know intangibles could kill if this one gets to Game 7.
  • Hurcomb: Detroit in 5: Red Wings' postseason experience will overwhelm surprising Coyotes.
  • Dodd: Detroit in 6: The Red Wings won't get there unless Jimmy Howard comes up big in goal.




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Comments

Since: Apr 6, 2010
Posted on: April 28, 2010 10:51 am
 

Expert Picks: Conference Quarterfinals

I don't care about "stats" as the great Bill Belichick put it "stats are for losers"

The Sabres scored first in 5 out of the six games and Miller couldn't hold onto a lead. You just like many others want to act like the "american hero" can do no wrong.

Rask: 4 Miller: 2

Deal with it.
Bye bye Millers umm I mean Sabres!

Go Bruins!! Savvy is back baby!



Since: Apr 12, 2010
Posted on: April 27, 2010 3:04 pm
 

Expert Picks: Conference Quarterfinals

Miller didnt get dominated by the bruins his stats and Rasks are almost identical for the series. the sabres lost cause their power play was terrible. 0-20 to bostons 6-20. that and the fact buffalo only showed up for half the games decided the series.  MIller is the best goalie in hockey right now he just happened to be playing on a team that couldnt get it going.



Since: Apr 6, 2010
Posted on: April 27, 2010 9:24 am
 

Expert Picks: Conference Quarterfinals

Ha Bruins win! The "experts" on CBS are usually never right so its an upset if they are nowadays.

Miller got dominated the entire series american hero or not Rask>>>Miller.

Bring on the Pens, or heck maybe even the Flyers!

Go Bruins!



Since: Apr 27, 2010
Posted on: April 27, 2010 4:19 am
 

Expert Picks: Conference Quarterfinals

Joke of Picks. And, worst officiating during series. Apparently when a team plays a strong D style the refs allow extra boarding/interference. See Kalata hit in game 6. Just an example. But good luck against Pitt Boston. Hope you get Merked.



Since: Oct 13, 2007
Posted on: April 26, 2010 10:03 pm
 

Expert Picks: Conference Quarterfinals

Oh yeah baby!! Bruins win!!! Gotta love playoff hockey!!!! Round 2 anyone???



Since: Oct 13, 2007
Posted on: April 23, 2010 9:59 pm
 

Expert Picks: Conference Quarterfinals

Boston`s doing alot better than u experts thought?? NO!!



Since: Mar 10, 2007
Posted on: April 21, 2010 11:21 pm
 

Expert Picks: Conference Quarterfinals

I cant see Buffalo winning 3 straight now.....................So called expert picks........... Ha!!!!



Since: Jan 29, 2009
Posted on: April 21, 2010 11:50 am
 

Expert Picks: Conference Quarterfinals

It looks to me like Dodd has no idea what he's talking about. Jacka**!



Since: Nov 4, 2006
Posted on: April 20, 2010 5:18 pm
 

Expert Picks: Conference Quarterfinals

Yeah.  Especially in game 1, right?



Since: Oct 10, 2006
Posted on: April 17, 2010 2:17 am
 

Expert Picks: Conference Quarterfinals

Detroit came back in Game 2 but it was a lot closer than the score.  They already lost Game 1.  I don't think the Coyotes have been lucky.  They are inexperienced and that will probably cost them the series, but they have a lot more talent than people want to admit. 

As to the Blackhawks being the only team that can challenge the Wings, I don't think you should overlook the Canucks.  They have a good goaltender and the Sedin twins can put on a show.  The Sharks seem to struggle in the playoffs, but winning that game in OT tonight might give them some confidence and they have talent if they can figure out how to turn it on in the post-season and Nabokov can get out of his own head.

Detroit isn't bullet-proof and while they played well in the post-Olympics, they didn't play that much better than the Coyotes if you look at the records.  Detroit had a favorable schedule with 11 of 21 at home, while the Coyotes played only 8 of 19 at home.  Still, the Coyotes won 3 less games but only lost 1 more game than the Wings.  This series could be a lot longer than you seem to think, and when that happens, anything can happen!



The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com