For each round of the Stanley Cup playoffs I will publish a series preview with my predictions, and you are encouraged to leave your comments on each article picking the winners of each bracket. You get a bracket filled out correctly through the course of the posts, and I will send you a FanSided hoodie.
Here are the rules, it is very simple, you select and comment on each series preview with who you think will win the series. You can add as much opinion as you want, but all I want to know is what team you think will win and in how many games. You don’t necessarily need to get the game count correct to move on to the second round – but that will be used in the tie breaker.
I should preface this and say that there is, like every other year, sometimes no scientific fact behind my selection of these teams, as sometimes, I just don’t want to see a team win a series.
Stanley Cup Playoffs Round 1: St. Louis Blues vs Chicago Blackhawks
In what will probably be the most anticipated and watched series of the first round, the St. Louis Blues have tried to develop themselves into a contender by adding goaltender Ryan Miller, in what they hope is the final piece of the puzzle. Fear not for fans of the note however – they are set with a roster that is there to win for several years going forward, and Ryan Miller is open to resigning there.
For the Chicago Blackhawks, they again try to be the first team to repeat as Stanley Cup Champions for the first time since the Detroit Red Wings in 1997 and 1998. Getting Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews back in time for the first round are going to help them.
Regular season powerhouses, both the Blues and Blackhawks finished with 107 points, but failed to win their division, stepping aside for the Colorado Avalanche. Injuries to major players prevented a climb for the Blackhawks, and six straight losses to end the regular season pulled the St. Louis Blues out of not only the divisional spot, but the President’s Trophy running as well.
The two teams met five times this year, with St. Louis winning the first three, and Chicago winning the last two meetings.
|Thursday, April 17||8 p.m.||Chicago at St. Louis||NBCSN, CBC|
|Saturday, April 19||3 p.m.||Chicago at St. Louis||NBC, CBC|
|Monday, April 21||8:30 p.m.||St. Louis at Chicago||CNBC, CBC|
|Wednesday, April 23||9:30 p.m.||St. Louis at Chicago||NBCSN, CBC|
|*Friday, April 25||8 p.m.||Chicago at St. Louis||NBCSN, CBC|
|*Sunday, April 27||3 p.m.||St. Louis at Chicago||NBC, CBC|
|*Tuesday, April 29||TBD||Chicago at St. Louis||CBC|
The Chicago Blackhawks are looking like the favorites for this series, returning everyone from last years run to the top of the regular season and the Stanley Cup – but the St. Louis Blues have a lot to prove. I would love to see the St. Louis Blues get to the finals for that conditional pick, but the uncertainty in the Game 1 line up due to injury could get the Blackhawks out to an early and seemingly unfair advantage.
Chicago peels off into the second round with four wins in six games.