Thursday, April 20, 2006

Western Conference Update


I disagree with the worst front offices, any list that does not include the Flyers and Bobby Clarke is just plain negligent.

Interesting response - as the Flyers are averaging a cup final appearance about every 10 years and have knocked out my beloved Leafs countless times, I always think of them as a rather well run club.

But your point is well taken - how many times have the Flyers been undone by one goofy decision. Even if Mike Milbury were suddenly the GM of a few of those past Flyers clubs, he would have realized they were one strong goalie away from being a perrenial cup challenger. Nevermind the awful treatment of Roger Neilson.

It will also be interesting to see how some of the long-term contracts Clarke dished out to free agents this year play out - I wouldn't want Hatcher consuming 10% of my payroll for the next four years...

Largeheartedboy on Dallas - Colorado

Since Marty Turco shook off his early season slump and Mike Modano quitwhining, the Stars have been as rock steady as any team in the west overthe last half season, and I think they'll give Detroit a run for theconference championship.

Colorado's injuries (rookie Marek Svatos, defenseman Ossi Vaananen andveteran forward Steve Konowalchuk are out while Alex Tanguay is nursinga bad knee) don't help the underdog team, and neither does theunderwhelming play of its goaltending duo of Jose Theodore and PeterBudaj.

I think Theodore will blossom away from the pressure of Montrealand again hoist the Vezina Trophy, but I don't think he'll steal this series. As a matter of fact, I'll be surprised if he holds the starting spot after game 3.

Did I mention that blueliner Patrice "Breeze By"Brisebois averages over 20 minutes a game for this Avalanche team? Thatis not a sign of a quality playoff team.

Stars in 6

Largeheatedboy on Calgary v. Anaheim
I think this series is the tightest in the first round. With two stargoaltenders, Miikka Kiprusoff for the Flames and J-S Giguere for theDucks, the series may come down to the hottest netminder.

My money is on the Flames, who are building on their 2003-2004 Stanley Cup finals experience and have Jarome Iginla (6 points in 4 games against Anaheimthis year and my nomination for the best all-around player in the game) ready to explode in the playoffs.

Flames in 7


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