Author Topic: Playoffs  (Read 5280 times)

YoungGrasshopper

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Playoffs
« on: Apr 11, 2012, 06:03 PM »
Playoffs start tonight, and as we have all seen (a la Jaroslav Halak) a hot goalie can do miracles. What I find interesting is that all the goalies in the playoffs are strong.

East
1. NYR - Lundquvist, the guy is a machine, he's so cerebral in his approach to the game, such a treat to watch. NYR isn't an offensive juggernaut, but with this guy in the pipes expect them to win quite a few 2-1 games

2. Bos - Thomas, Conn Smythe from last year, critics doubt his technical ability, yet no one questions his work ethic. Plain and simple the guy gets the job done. Hasek any one?

3. Fla - Theodore, ok so he kinda fell off the map after his stint with MTL, but the guys is solid this year, has playoff experience and when he's hot he's tough to beat, I wouldn't count him out yet.

4. Pit - Fleury, big game goalie at a big time of the year. Technically sound, with some of the best reflexes in the league. Has the experience, has won the cup and lost the cup. Tends to let in the odd softy, but more than makes up for in in consistency. Played so many big games the nerves can't affect him

5. Phi - Bryzgalov, Universe, beach balls? The guy is a little weird (24/7 he was hilarious), but what goalie isn't? Hot down the stretch despite struggling early on in the season, but the past is the past, if he can keep Sid and Gino at bay, he gives the Flyers a great chance. (IMHO best duel of goalies in the playoffs' 1st round)

6. NJ - Brodeur, Top 5 All-time, Marty Brodeur, need I say more? Ok fine, he put up decent numbers despite being one of the oldest goalies in the league, (that Roloson guy is getting pretty old there eh?), but at 39 the guy still has the agility, drive and determination to win. He's a game changer. Plus he Marty Brodeur, did I mention that? 

7. Was - Holtby, Don't jump down my throat right away. Sure only 7 games this year, but the Caps are going to have to go with him. I don't want to hear about him being a rookie, its baloney, Cam Ward did it his rookie season. Impossible is nothing!

8. Ott - Anderson, Had a stellar season this year with a Sens team. They came in with low expectations and made the playoffs thanks to his consistent netminding. No pressure for Anderson and the Sens, if he outplays Henrik there may be a hope. Hope he can stay healthy.

West

1. Van - Louuuu, After criticizing Tim last playoffs watch for Luongo to keep quiet and focus on his game. If he falters Schneider will come in, heís arguably one of the best backups this post season  (yes St. Louis has some good ones, wait for it). Luongo will be playing for his life here, heís taken them within one game last year, and while he has his struggles, he a solid confident goalie, and his gold medal shows his ability to play and win big games, on the biggest stage.

2. StL - Halak/Elliot, First off, congrats to them on their Jennings trophy for the least goals allowed all year. Halak will start due to Elliot's "upper body injury", but having Halak start isn't such a bad thing is it? We all saw the magic this guy is able to produce in April and May, St Louis hopes he can recapture that great playoff run and show Missouri what he's all about.

3. Phx - Smith, From Tampa Bay back-up to starter in the Desert. Many feel his defence is what made him so good this year, and point to Bryz's decline as a factor of not having a solid unit in front of him. However, hockey is a team game and the whole unit is only as strong as the sum of its parts. The Desert Dogs are a good team, oozing depth in every aspect. If Smith can recreate his season, they have a chance of pushing forward.

4. Nsh - Rinne, Another gem, he's young and agile. He combines great technical ability with outstanding intensity and determination, with a revved up roster, and Rinne on his game, Nasville can finally prove why they are in the playoffs year in and year out.

5. Det - Howard, plagued by injuries a bit this year, but should be good for the playoffs. With a stellar team in front of him all he has to do is make the saves and let his teammates do the work, still young and might succumb to pressure, but had decent runs in years past, is a possibility to do it again as long as they get by Nashville

6. Chi - Crawford, The one guy I'm iffy on. Hasnít put up stellar numbers, looked shaky many times, been pulled on many occasions this season. Not convinces, but it is the playoffs, anything can happen. Ray Emery is waiting in the wings, had a good playoff run with the Sens to the finals a couple years back, so there is some experience there.

7. SJ - Niemi, doesn't put up the best season statistics, but this guy brings his game in the playoffs. Already has a cup in his young career, so he too knows what it takes to be successful in the playoffs. Shark teammates have notoriously been playoff failures, but if he comes to play this may rejuvenate them.

8 LA - Quick, IMHO the MOST underrated goalie in the league, for a playoff team, they put up the 3rd least goals for in the LEAGUE, so the guy must have been doing something right to get them into the post season. Has the potential to be a major factor, if he shuts the Canucks down and the Kings start scoring, there is the possibility of a major 1st round upset!

Thanks for reading, add insight as well! Playoffs Baby, best time of the year!

YoungGrasshopper