2011 Playoffs – Round 1 Recap

Well, not everything turned out as expected. But that is the beauty of the first round.

Here are my predictions again, and the actual results. :

Considering how tight the Western Conference standings were, you’d think there would have been a few upsets, right?

Series: Vancouver Canucks (1) vs. Chicago Blackhawks (8)

My Prediction: Blackhawks win in 6 games.

What Actually Happened: Canucks won in 7 games.

Comments: Call me an idealist, but I really though the ‘Hawks could pull off an upset. And they almost did. But almost doesn’t count in hockey. At least the Blackhawks gave us a series.

So far, 0 for 1.

Series: San Jose Sharks (2) vs. Los Angeles Kings (7)

My Prediction: Sharks win in 5 games.

What Actually Happened: Sharks won in 6 games.

Comments: We all knew that the Kings wouldn’t go far without Anze Kopitar. Hah…that rhymed. Imagine what they could have done if that kid was in the lineup.

This puts me at 1 for 2 now.

Series: Detroit Red Wings (3) vs. Phoenix Coytoes

My Prediction: Red Wings win in 7 games.

What Actually Happened: Red Wings SWEEP in 4 games.

Comments: Sure, we knew the Wings would win. But I’m disappointed in Ilya Bryzgalov. I thought the Coytoes goaltender would steal at least ONE game in the series.

Now, I’m 2 for 3. Moving on…

Series: Anaheim Mighty Ducks (4)  vs. Nashville Predators (5)

My Prediction: Ducks win in 5 games.

What Actually Happened: Nashville won in 6 games.

Comments:  Well, here’s our Western Conference upset. Mad props to the Predators for winning their first playoff series in franchise history.

2 for 4 now. 50%.

Over in the East, things were a lot closer. At least in 3 of the series.

Series: Washington Capitals (1) vs. New York Rangers (8)

My Prediction: Captials sweep in 4.

What Actually Happened: Washington won in 5 games.

Comments: I think we all knew the Caps would power their way to Round 2.

3 for 5.

Series: Philadelphia Flyers (2) vs. Buffalo Sabres (7)

My Prediction: Flyers win in 6 games.

What Actually Happened: Flyers won in 7 games.

Comments: Tomas Vanek–the highest-paid Buffalo Sabre–was ineffectual in this series (just like he was in my fantasy hockey pool). Flyers have improved since their Stanley Cup run from last year, so I’m not surprised by the outcome.

4 for 6.

Series: Boston Bruins (3) vs. Montreal Canadiens (6)

My Prediction: Bruins win in 6 games.

What Actually Happened: Boston won in 7 games.

Comments: Wow! Another Game 7. This series was tight, but it’s good to see the Bs get to the next round. Though I’m not a big follower of the Eastern Conference, I’ll always pull for Tim Thomas.

5 for 7.

Series: Pittsburgh Penguins (4) vs. Tampa Bay Lightning (5) 

My Prediction: Penguins win in 7.

What Actually Happened: Lightning win in 7.

Comments: No Crosby and no Malkin make Penguins go something something…

A shame we won’t get a Caps-Pens matchup in Round 2.

That puts me at 5 for 8.

OK, let’s see if I can get my Round 2 predictions up before Round 2 is over…


Author: Sal Barry

Sal Barry is the editor and webmaster of Puck Junk. He is a freelance hockey writer, college professor and terrible hockey player. Follow him on Twitter @puckjunk

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