Why We Will WinApril 10, 2007
Not many ‘experts’ are picking the Preds to beat the Sharks in a rematch of last years Western Quaterfinals (during Sunday’s NBC game Brett Hull and Ray Ferraro both picked the Sharks while Bill Clement went with the Preds). Seriously…why would they?
– The Preds have never won a playoff series (losing 4-2 to Detroit in 04 and 4-1 to San Jose last year).
– The Preds, once a frontrunner for the Presidents Trophy couldn’t buy a win against a playoff bound team in the last 3-4 weeks of the season.
– The Preds have losing record against playoff bound teams this year.
– The Preds will be without dynamic forward Steve Sullivan and may get Martin Erat back for game one.
Heck! If I were an expert I wouldn’t be picking the Preds either. Instead of going into the playoffs playing great hockey the Predators spent most of the last month just trying to skate with the good teams and barley beating the bad ones.
Before you go off and tell me I am too negative let me lay out the reasons why I think the Predators will win this series.
– The Preds won the regular season series against the Sharks 3 games to 1 (while I know that many say it doesn’t mean anything I think it does…it proved we can skate with these guys and that is huge!)
– Our young guys are better. Last year Ryan Suter (former 1st round pick for the Preds) was benched for the entire series due to lack of experience and his non-physical play. Not so this year. He can throw the body a bit and is one of the top young defensemen in the league. Shea Weber is another young d-man who will be giving the Sharks fits too.
– Vokoun is playing this year. While he has not looked his best this year; a solid win over a strong playing Blues team and a 4-2 win at Colorado give me hope that Vokoun is once again seeing the puck the way he should (last year Vokoun was injured and back up Chris Mason played in his stead)
– Alexander The Great – Young Alexander Radulov loves to score goals. LOVES IT! Nothing gets him more excited and he is my pick to make a big splash this post season.
– The Preds play a more physical game than they did last year. The addition of Arnott gives us more size up the middle and with the likes of Hordichuck, Tootoo and Weber throwing the body around we will be able to hang with the Sharks better this year.
– I’ll take the match ups against their D all night. While solid I don’t think they have the big shut down guy on the blue line to make the difference.
My PREDiction – The Preds win this series in 5 games. When the Preds do in fact win it in five here in Nashville I think it takes hockey in this city to a whole other level. Nashville will be in love with the Preds like never before. That ‘nervous 7th grade, my stomach hurts thinking about it’ love.
Come on boys…lets do it!