Half of the first-round series are over, so I thought I’d take a quick look at how my predictions are doing. The other four could be over as soon as Wednesday, so the full wrap-up and next predictions will happen soon.
The only Eastern Conference series to wrap up is Philly-Pittsburgh, which the Flyers took in 6. I did have the series going to 6 games (it appears to be the favorite in the NHL), but thought the Penguins would get it. It was kind of crazy, with a 3-2 win for the Penguins being the lowest-scoring game. The Penguins scored 10 in one game and 5 in another while the Flyers rang up 8 goals twice and 5 in the clincher. So this was unexpected, but the Flyers are a good team. They’ll be tough the rest of the way.
In the West, only one series is still going. First, the Kings beat the Canucks in an NHL-playoff-patented 8-1 upset. Not only did the 8 seed win, but they took it in 5 games. This is why my model has no home ice advantage in it; upsets just happen too often.
In my first correct picks, the Blues beat the Sharks. I had it happening in 6 instead of 5, but what are you going to do? Beyond picking a winner, most series are predicted to end in 6 games but 5 and 7 are close; essentially you should just go against a sweep.
Finally, sadly, my Red Wings were defeated in 5 by the Predators. It’s pretty disappointing, but I’ll cry myself to sleep with our 21 straight playoff appearances and 12 straight years of over 100 points. Maybe next year will be the year where the Red Wings finally fall apart, but they say that every year.