Stanley Cup Playoffs Predictions

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With the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs set to start tonight, now is a good time for us to share our predictions for the first round and lock in who we think will ultimately be the champions.

If you’re looking for in-depth analysis of each first round series, then we got you covered there too. I wrote a detailed preview of each Western Conference series that you can view here and Corey Abbott examined every Eastern Conference series here.

With all that said, let’s look at who our writers like to win in the first round, starting with the East:

Panthers Vs. Capitals

Maple Leafs Vs. Lightning

Hurricanes vs. Bruins

Rangers vs. Penguins

Ryan Dadoun

Panthers in 6

Lightning in 7

Hurricanes in 6

Rangers in 6

Michael Finewax

Panthers in 5

Leafs in 7

Hurricanes in 7

Rangers in 5

Corey Abbott

Panthers in 6

Lightning in 7

Hurricanes in 7

Rangers in 6

Mark Lindquist

Panthers in 4

Lightning in 6

Hurricanes in 4

Rangers in 5

Jeffrey Alfieri

Panthers in 6

Lightning in 5

Bruins in 7

Penguins in 6

Matthew Ohayon

Panthers in 6

Lightning in 5

Bruins in 7

Rangers in 5

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The fact that we found consensus with the Panthers-Capitals series is a little surprising to me. It’s easy to see why given how stunning Florida’s forward core is, especially after adding Claude Giroux and of course I’m part of the consensus, but I do not think this series is a slam dunk. The Capitals have a strong team and you can never count Alex Ovechkin out. They should make life tough for the Panthers.

Avalanche Vs. Predators

Wild vs. Wild Blues

Flames vs. Stars

Oilers vs. Kings

Ryan Dadoun

Avalanche in 5

Wild in 7

Flames in 5

Oilers in 6

Michael Finewax

Avalanche in 4

Blues in 6

Flames in 5

Oilers in 5

Corey Abbott

Avalanche in 4

Wild in 6

Flames in 5

Kings in 6

Mark Lindquist

Avalanche in 5

Wild in 7

Flames in 5

Oilers in 5

Jeffrey Alfieri

Avalanche in 6

Wild in 7

Flames in 6

Kings in 7

Matthew Ohayon

Avalanche in 4

Wild in 7

Flames in 7

Kings in 6

You can see there is not much disagreement among us when it comes to the west with the only real split being the Oilers-Kings series. I think people might be underestimating Edmonton a little. I don’t have confidence in their goaltending, though Mike Smith entering the playoffs on a hot streak makes things intriguing, but I think there’s at least enough talent there to get past Los Angeles when they’re missing. Drew Doughty.

Beyond the first round though, I do not see myself betting on the Oilers. Though who knows, maybe how they play in this series will end up changing my mind.

Let’s take a moment to appreciate how much of a favorite the Colorado Avalanche are. Not every writer had them winning in the Cup, but everyone at least had them reach the finals.

The Avalanche have certainly assembled an amazing team, but they have underperformed in recent postseason runs. There will be a lot of pressure on them to do better this time around and a lot of soul searching if the Avalanche end up suffering an early exit.

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