2013 – 2014 NHL Playoff Predictions

Yes, we’re doing it again this year.  Making our predictions……

Western Conference

(1) COL v (WC) MIN

PB- I have a little bias on this match up. Two players on Minnesota decided they wanted to “go home” rather than come to a winner like the Red Wings. Expectations are a beotch eh Zach and Ryan? Seriously Colorado is a solid squad with youth and goaltending. In today’s NHL speed kills and with St. Patrick behind the bench they look like a good one to move on to the next round. Aves in 6.

King – I will start this prediction by laying out a fact.  I have no love at all for Minnie.  From the whole State of Hockey complaining, to the stupid logo, to their owner complaining about the high price of salaries WHILE signing two players for mucho bucks.  Now that I got my personal feelings out of the way, it’s down to opinion of this match up.  I personally believe that Colorado has over achieved this year.  Don’t get me wrong, I think they have a darn good team…just not that great.  That being said, I still think that youth will carry this team at least through the first round.  Aves in 5.

(1) ANA v (WC) DAL

PB- This one is a great matchup of a pairing that is really good Getzloff and Perry vs Benn and Seguin. They should be as advertized but I just don’t think Dallas has enough to spread it around where the waterfowl have more supporting cast members to take them to the next round. Ever heard of a guy named Selanne? The Mighty Ducks in 6

King – I actually like this match up.  Although Ducks had a little struggle towards the end of the season, I really like this team.  Dallas is one of those teams busting it’s hump trying to make the playoffs and has been in that mode for alittle while.  I’m going with the Ducks that are mighty though as I think they just have a tad bit better team.  Ducks in 7

(2) STL v (3) CHI

PB- This is going to be a hard one to figure this year. Chicago and St. Louis are both hurting with top players either coming off injury or are hopefully coming back soon. Both solid squads and hard working. Chitown has a couple of cups and plenty of playoff experience where the Blues are still figuring out their way through the world. I just hate to say this but the Blackhawks in 5.

King – St. Louis has just looked awful toward the end of the year.  They just have too many players not scoring and although high scoring games are not the norm in the playoffs…you do need goals to win. 5 goals in your last 7 games isn’t going to cut it.  St. Louis is one of those teams I would love to see advance..but I don’t see it this year.  Sigh Blackhawks in 5.

(2) SJ v (3) LA

PB- Wow an all Cali matchup! Now that worked out well for them as unlike in the past when the Wings were suppose to travel to and from Cali for a round or two. That said time to embrace the new NHL and this fine matchup. SJ has a well balanced attack but they have one major flaw in their program Joe Thornton. He has all the talent in the world but has never been successful in the playoffs. LA has a cup recently and plenty of size and speed to take over this series and a huge plus by the name of Quick. Kings crown the Sharks in 6.

King – San Jose…San Jose…when are you going to get a break and have a great playoff run?  I unfortunately don’t see it this year.  Quick seems to have bounced back from his injury prior to the Olympics and finished extremely strong.  Niemi doesn’t raise the same level of confidence going into the playoffs.  Could this be the place where Miller ends up???  Kings in 7.

Eastern Conference

(1) BOS v (WC) DET

PB- Great original six matchup for the first round. Boston is solid but somehow the Wings won the season series 3-1. Boston has a cup with plenty of playoff experienced players where the Wings and the youth movement seem to love the opportunity to play and show they are up to the task. This one is going to be one to go down to the wire and in typical fashion I see a couple of overtime games in this series. Boston is strong but I see the Wings pulling the upset in 7.

King-I know alot of people are expecting this to be the one upset this year.  I mean, as PB pointed out, they were 3 to 1 winners in the regular season.  They are very similar in play.  I on the other hand believe this is the year that the “new guys” from Detroit learn their lesson of what the playoffs are all about….Bruins in 6

(2) TAM v (3) MON

PB- Too bad that Montreal pulled the Lightening in the first round. Oh wait I think that was a good thing for them. The bolts lost their goalie to the dreaded upper body injury even though it looked like he was shot in the leg. As much as I really like Stamkos the bolts just don’t have Stevie Y lacing up the skates and Marty is now on the Rangers. Leadership is lacking but the Canadians have a huge thing working for them a little hot streak and a great goalie in Price. Montreal in 6.

King – Montreal has been my “meh” team of the year.  I think they’re alright, but haven’t really done anything to make me say wow.  I do like the pick up of Vaneck although in his last playoffs he was -7 in 7 games.  Tampa has that something this year.  Everyone said, “they’ll crumble” when Stamkos went down…guess what, they still won.  Everyone said, “they’re crazy” when they traded away St. Louis…guess what, they continued to win.  I pick Tampa in 7

(1) PIT v (WC) CLB

PB- Hey Columbus welcome to the playoffs for the second time in your history. The Pens will welcome you with a solid effort and flopping flower (aka Fleury) will tighten up and play solid. The most important thing is the Pens have a lot of firepower and I just don’t see the Bluejackets able to match that scoring ability. Pains me to say this but the non-flying birds in 6.

King – I’m not that crazy about this round.  I think that Pittsburgh is happy they pulled Columbus and not Detroit, but I’m not too sure about that feeling.  Something in the gut tells me this is the one upset that happens every year.  Bobrovsky scares me as it seems he’s on his game and this is the time to do that.  Call me crazy…Columbus in 7

(2) NYR v (3) PHI

PB- This is will be the most hard hitting of the series in both Conferences. The Rangers are solid and have plenty of leadership and playoff experience to boot. The Flyers started really slow but built a solid season behind balance scoring and plenty of grit. The biggest “If” is if Henrik Lundqvist can stand on his head and take over a game or two. I love both teams but the magic eight ball says Rangers in 7 with 3 overtime games.

King – Ohhhh, this is match up I can’t wait to see.  Most people wrote off the Flyers after their horrible start, but man..they picked up their play so much.  The Rangers look sharp, but something about them seems alittle off.  I’m thinking if Mason can play out of his mind…which is a stretch but doable….UPDATE: Mason is now unavailable with an “upper body injury.”  I will still stick with my pick, but it just became alot harder! Flyers in 7

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Five Thoughts on a Friday…”The Zombie edition”

Hello?  Where did everyone go?   Oh, is that someone out there???  Can you hear me?  If so, here are the items of the week.

1. My partner is alive out there somewhere..I know he is.  How do I know this…I keep receiving this video from him.  Is this some type of weird code?

2.  The trade deadline has come and gone and it was pretty much a snoozefest.  I’m wondering if this Canadian was listening to it on the radio or something?

3.  Seriously?  Is this a Saturday Night Live spoof?   Am I being Punk’d?

4.  Sigh…this was waiting to happen.

5.  If you ever wanted to have a sign that we have finally given up on life…this is got to be a good start or maybe end?.

Well, that’s it folks…if anyone is even out there!  Have a great weekend!

Five Thoughts on a Friday – The “Christmas Vacation” Edition

Happy Friday everyone, and since this is my last post before it hits, Merry Christmas!

We’ve pretty much hit the “I’ve had this cold long enough, eaten enough Christmas cookies, and heard as many carols as I possibly could” point where it’s about time to just pull the plug on the year and wind down. But before we do – let’s see what’s on tap this week!

  1. Sometimes, you just need a sandwich. I get that. And one of my co-bloggers has had some fun in the past talking about sandwiches. But still, I don’t care how good the sandwich is, a pilot holding an international flight hostage and refusing to take off until his sandwich arrives is taking things a bit far. I wonder if they told the passengers the truth, or blamed it on “maintenance”.
  2. As we hit the end of the year, it’s inevitable that we get inundated with lists of things from the past year. people we lost, funniest moments, and on and on and on… But this is one that I found interesting given my fondness for automotive news items. It’s a list of vehicles that automakers killed off this year. But then again, after reading it I’m not sure if anyone is going to notice these vehicles aren’t being made anymore.
  3. Switching to local issues, in this day and age sometimes a city council has to make the tough decisions. You know, like whether to allow American alligators in the city’s business district. Specifically, an alligator named Wally that will welcome patrons to a cajun restaurant that should be opening soon. And that’s just what Port Huron, Michigan did this past week. Other American gators were unavailable for comment regarding whether they planned to move north and take up residence in Port Huron.
  4. Speaking of city councils, let’s turn our attention a bit north… to the fine city of Toronto. Because I have to ask folks…. if you know your mayor is Rob Ford you know what you’re dealing with. Right? So I have to ask… who decided on the dance part during the council meeting that resulted in this?
  5. I’m going to use item five to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. It’s been a wild ride this past year. And whether you celebrate Christmas or not I hope the rest of the year is good to you (And next year too). In keeping with the title of today’s post, I think we’re going to take a bit of a Christmas Vacation and take next week off. We’ll be back after the first of the year. Unless one of the other guys wants to post something next week.

So, that’s wraps it up for this week, and probably for this year. Merry Christmas everyone, and Happy New Year! Time to start the Christmas Vacation.

Have a great one folks!
-Beer

Five Thoughts on a Friday – The “Holiday Hubub” Edition

Howdy folks, and welcome to the next to last Friday before Christmas.  And yep, we’re starting to get caught up in all the usual holiday hubub, hence the title of this week’s post. You know how it goes, Invitations to be at three different things in three different places on the same day, trying to make sure all the last minute gifts are bought, dealing with single digit temperatures at night, all the fun stuff. In the meantime, the world marches on. And with that, let’s see what we have for this week!

  1. I’m going to start with this one because it made me laugh. Straight from the “wait, someone actually got paid money to research this?” department comes a study that has looked into, of all things, the drinking habits of one James Bond. Yes. THAT James Bond. And apparently, they’ve determined his drinking is likely to be the cause of his demise. According to the study “British researchers predict he could die from alcohol-related causes, such as liver damage, by age 56.” Assuming of course, he doesn’t die first from, of I don’t know… Bullets, Knives, Bombs, Poison, Explosions, Lasers, Sharks, Plane Crashes, or any other exotic, overly complicated means of death. Because he’s a spy. Which totally makes alcohol his likely cause of death. Sheesh
  2. Speaking of sharks…. Note to self, if you ever get a chance to go to the beach near Camp Pendleton. Do not go swimming. Fishing on the other hand, might be fun, considering there are great white sharks to be caught. And yes, this is one of those stories that I used because I thought it was cool. And at least this is a shark story that doesn’t involve a shark biting a human.
  3. Staying in the “I thought it was cool” department, but moving to the automotive history wing of the exhibit…. We have an article talking about the history of the Michelin Man. Never really realized he’d been around so long. And yeah, some of those early costumes, gotta say I agree. They could be viewed as being quite creepy. I did think the picture of him smoking a cigar was kind of funny. Not what I usually think of when I think of smoking tires. More like this:
  4. As the holidays approach, and you plan and get ready for your holiday travels and travails, here’s a piece of advice to keep in mind. It’s generally okay to sleep on the plane. Heck, I’ve been known to nod off before we’re even off the ground. But when you manage to sleep through the landing, well… you risk being left on the plane and locked in!
  5. Lastly… Ah those crazy Canadians. Now they’re trying to claim the North Pole! Now, I’m not an authority on the subject, but I don’t believe Santa Claus considers himself to be a Canadian. And it was certainly never mentioned as such in any of the TV specials I watched growing up. So I really can’t see this happening without a fight. Especially since they’re doing it right around Christmas. I bet they’re hoping to catch him out of the workshop when they show up.  My money is on Santa in this one. It’s been tried before.

Okay folks, that’s five and I’m out of here. So until next week, how about an old school Christmas song that doesn’t get a ton of play,  from back when MTV actually had music and stuff going on?

Have a great weekend folks!
-Beer

 

Five Thoughts on a Friday- The “Where did the week go?” Edition

Howdy folks, and happy Friday. Yep, it’s Friday again – and as this week’s title will attest, I swear it was just Monday morning yesterday. Normally I would say that blasting through a week that fast is sort of a good thing – it gets you to the weekend faster. This week though, and this time of year, I’m not so sure. With all the holiday obligations this time of year brings, plus all the other stuff going on – it’s enough to make you need a beer! Hmmm… maybe it being Friday already is a good thing. That being said, let’s see what we’ve got this week, shall we?

  1. I can’t help it, it’s one of my favorite movie lines. So I can help but wonder… When Chief Brody said they needed a bigger boat….

    I have to wonder if something like this was what he had in mind? Because at 1,601 feet it’s as big as they come!
  2. Now, I know it has the potential to be a very disruptive weather event, but seeing as it’s only December 6th I find it a bit worrisome that the weather and news media have dubbed today “Ice Friday”. I mean, it’s getting on winter time. This type of weather is to be expected to a certain degree. And having spent some time in Dallas, yes – they are used to getting a bit of ice and snow there. So, again, isn’t it a bit early to be talking about the 2nd or 3rd “Deathstorm” or “Snowpocalypse” of the season already? And can we please stop  with the naming winter storms thing? That’s just plain silly.
  3. For this one, let’s hop from silly, to funny. At least, I think it’s funny. After all, what’s not to love about a silly ski trick gone wrong? Note to self, do not try this on the upcoming ski trip. Because odds are I’d hit my own truck instead of an innocent bus.
  4. I have to laugh at this one for two reasons. One, it just goes to show that sometimes, even having the owner’s manual isn’t enough. And two, the lines at the end of the article:

    “Glossop gave it another try, and the tank it rolled backward again through another guardrail and down an embankment.

    Glossop was cited for reckless driving and first-degree criminal mischief.

    Hastings says the tank is fine.”

    So… Final score… guardrails and driver… Zero. Tank… Two.

  5. And lastly, from the not real bright, to an excuse to bust out one of my all time favorite commercials. Every week during college football season, the ESPN Gameday crew goes to a big game. And every week in the crowd behind them, people try to get their clever signs on television. And last week, one enterprising student succeeded. His sign read simply… “Hi Mom, send Bitcoin” and had a QR Code next to the Bitcoin logo. Well, a picture of the sign made it online where people we able to read the QR code. And that student’s sign, as a result… netted him roughly $24,000 in one day. As the guys in the Guinness commercials liked to say… Brilliant!

Okay folks, that’s five and I’m out of here! Off to go find that beer and see if I can look into this supposed phenomenon known as… sleep. I don’t think it exists, but I’m sure gonna give it a try the weekend. In the meantime, let’s close out by keeping with the holiday theme. And since it’s definitely cold enough outside, how about we just “Let it snow“, huh?

Have a great weekend folks!
-Beer

Five Thoughts on a Friday – The “Charcoal Gray” Edition

Happy Friday everyone! Hope you all survived and enjoyed turkey day yesterday. I’ll do my best to keep it quick and light-hearted this week, in an effort to get finished up before I slip back into a turkey induced coma. So with that in mind, let’s get at it, shall we?

  1. Is it really appropriate to call today black Friday anymore? It seems to me that the name, which originally came from this being they day when brick and mortar retailers would see their stores reach the point of profitability for the year (Which would be shown in black ink rather than red for showing a loss), hence the name. With the sales starting earlier and earlier now, I just don’t see the connection anymore. Ah well…. maybe I’m just getting too old.
  2. It is now officially acceptable to not only have Christmas decorations up, but to turn them on at night in my world. And for the record the earliest official time it’s acceptable in my world occurs just after sundown on Thanksgiving. I think it goes back to when I was growing up, and we’d be watching the Cowboys game at grandma’s house. At some point during that game, Norelco would run an ad with Santa Claus using the top of an electric razor as a sled. And that came to signal that it was Christmas time to me.
  3. Now, I’m gonna say this up front. I didn’t go out shopping yesterday. We aren’t going out shopping today, either. But for everyone yelling about places being open and available to shop – deal with it. You’re in the minority. We live in a democratic republic, and people have voted… with their wallets. Maybe it has something to do with their being fewer shopping days this year. I don’t know. I know you won’t get me to go out in that madness, but obviously enough people will to make it worthwhile for stores to be open. So that’s that.
  4. On a more cheerful note if you happen to be from my neck of the woods – we got to see something from a group that works every single Thanksgiving day that we haven’t seen in a decade. The Detroit Lions won a game on Thanksgiving for the first time since 2003! And for that, I am thankful!
  5. Lastly, it’s not a post from me without some sort of random geek type news, and this one is no different. Again, these are here because I think a story about how a comet basically appears to have burned up while flying too close to the sun is cool. If you’ll pardon the pun.

Okay folks, that’s a quick five thoughts on black Friday and I’m off to get back to work. Which in this case means I’m off to make a turkey and swiss omelet. In the meantime, considering I did wake up to snow on the ground yesterday… It is now time to bust these out. After all, it did sorta look like a Marshmallow World.

Have a great weekend folks!
-Beer

Five Thoughts on a Friday – The “On this day in history…” Edition

Good morning everyone, and welcome to this week’s edition of Five Thoughts. As you may or may not have heard been bombarded with media coverage of, today is apparently a significant anniversary of a major event in United States political history.  And that’s all I’m really going to say about it. Not because I of any  political stances, but simply because I’m sure you’ll get (or have already gotten) more than enough media coverage of it.  So, what does that leave us to talk about?  Let’s find out!

  1. I admit, I’m a bit of a science geek. Now, I have no great desire to research the inner workings of the universe or anything like that, but I do enjoy reading about some stuff. Like a giant supernova blast that emitted a bunch of gamma rays. Although I have to say, I was sorely disappointed that there was one glaring omission. Lets be honest here, no story involving gamma rays is complete without mentioning this guy.
  2. Think this is a very cool article, about a volcano creating a new bit of land off the coast of Japan. Except for the part where they talk about how the new island might be eroded away. Or it might not. Wow, way to cover all the bases there, guys. No fooling you.
  3. While we’re on the subject of our planet – here’s one from the weird. wild, nightmare, makes you wonder department. As in, the fisherman that caught it were wondering…. what in the world is that thing we just caught? Well, it’s a long-nosed chimaera. Here’s the description….
    “boasts a whip-like tail and an enlarged cone-shaped nose” and paired with this other tidbit of info..
    “these denizens, although they exist in oceans around the world, inhabit depths of up to 6,000 feet and are rarely encountered.”
  4. Coming back on land, we have news of a landing gone wrong. As in “landing at the wrong airport”. See what I did there? What the pilots did, however, was land a massive 747 Dreamlifter at the wrong airport in Wichita, Kansas. Oops.  And when I say the thing is massive? Well, here – you can watch for yourself
  5. And lastly, what’s a Five Thoughts without something from the “You’re not real bright, are you?” department? Especially when you work as a Financial Adviser, and you think the tolls on a toll road are optional. Leading to a whopping $202,000 in fines! When faced with a story like this, there’s only one man we can turn to. Red?

Okay folks, that’s five and from the looks of the weather report, I need to go get some firewood ready. It’s fixin’ to get COLD. No worries though, I’m not going to bust out the Christmas music yet. Even though they’re saying we may get some snow. In the meantime, I think this burnin’ number should get you warmed up.

Have a great weekend folks!
-Beer