Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Stanley Cup Playoffs: Conference Semis

Sabres vs. Rangers

The Sabres got by the Islanders while the Rangers had little trouble sweeping the Thrashers. There will be no shortage of offensive talent in this series as Buffalo pits their up tempo style against Jaromir Jagr and company. Sean Avery enjoyed a breakout series against Atlanta as he got inside Ilya Kovalchuk's head and provided some big time scoring. It will be interesting to see who his main target on the Sabres turns out to be. This series is probably more even than a lot of people want to admit and I think it is going to come down to goaltending. Ryan Miller has shown a knack for making the key save and that cannot be valued enough, but Henrik Lundqvist has been carrying the Rangers since the All-Star break and I don't see that changing now. I give the Rangers a slight edge in the series.

Prediction: Rangers in 6!

Devils vs. Senators

Ottawa looked dominant in their series against the Penguins. They played tough defense when they needed to and got goals from everywhere in their lineup. It was truly an impressive display. Having said that, the Penguin defense is nothing to write home about and the team as a whole played pretty lousy (with a few notable exceptions). The Senators won't be as lucky going up against a playoff tested Devils team. New Jersey played well for most of their series against the Lightening. Zach Parise was lights out and Martin Brodeur was himself. I think this series will be close, but I just can't see Ottawa getting by a team this tough and defensively sound.

Prediction: Devils in 7!

Red Wings vs. Sharks

The Sharks won a nasty, hard-fought series against Nashville while Detroit basically got to stand around and watch Calgary self destruct. If not for Mikka Kiprusoff that series gets way out of hand in Detroit's favor. If the young Sharks can play with discipline and get good performances from their top players I think they can handle Detroit relatively easily. I think the Sharks will be able to push the Red Wings around. I would look for them to try to crowd Dominik Hasek early as well and get in his head the way Jerome Iginla did for the Flames.

Prediction: Sharks in 6!

Ducks vs. Canucks

Vancouver played about 17 games worth of hockey against Dallas and gets rewarded with having to face the Ducks just two days after their game 7 victory. I'll be interested to see how much the Canucks have left in the tank after finishing off the Stars. The Ducks have huge edge going into this series being rested, deeper as a team, and at home. Throw Scott Niedermeyer into the mix for good measure and you have a recipe for a convincing Ducks victory. Roberto Luongo will keep the Canucks in it for the most part, and should be able to steal a game in Vancouver, but I think the Ducks will just be too much for the Canucks to handle.

Prediction: Ducks in 5!

Monday, April 23, 2007

Hittin' the Links: Tighten up those sideburns too!

  • Nice to see MLB still has their priorities straight. [link]
  • Barbosa wins Sixth Man award. Undead monkey takes most of the credit. [link]
  • Looks like Nellie kept a few tricks up his sleeve. [link]
  • Look out world, there's a new Ronaldo in town. [link]

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Hittin' the Links: A broken foot can't stop Sid the Kid!

  • Crosby had a broken foot for the last month and was still the best player in the NHL. [link]
  • Sean Hill busted for performance enhancers. No word yet on Alexei Yashin's pregnancy test results. [link]
  • Saturday Premiership recap. [link]

Friday, April 20, 2007

Hittin' the Links: Pacman says we can trust Pacman

  • Waiting on a response from Inky, Blinky, and Clyde. [link]
  • Only 32 bowl games? [link]
  • The NBA, totally unxenophobic. Really! [link]
  • Why buy the Yankess when I could have the Marlins, Devil Rays, Royals, and Pirates instead? [link]

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Hittin' the Links: I'll take the over on the number of fake punts.

  • It'll be like a game of Madden, but with real people. [link]
  • What about the fine for dating Paris Hilton? [link]
  • Your Golden State Warriors, now with 25% less sucking. [link]
  • The plus side of kickin' it old school on the ice. [link]

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Hittin' the Links: The NFL - Against Father/Son bonding since 1973

  • Call me on the boat when I get drafted. [link]
  • Looks like Kara Yorio found her crack pipe. [link]
  • LT is smarter than VY. [link]

R.I.P. Vinsanity

Maybe the Texans knew what they were doing after all. Maybe through some unexplainable power of foresight the Texans knew what was coming. Maybe some things really are too good to be true. Oh who am I kidding, the Texans ripped their fans’ collective heart out and stomped on it when they passed on drafting Vince Young last year, but that was before. Now Vince is a marked man. It’s not just 300 linemen Vince has to fear now, for Vince has been cursed. Madden Cursed to be specific.

I saw Vince do some of the most amazing things ever accomplished on a football field during his time at UT. He was an unstoppable package of size, speed, and vision to go along with an unquenchable desire to win. It was easy to see from the beginning that Vince was a once-in-a-lifetime athlete capable of remarkable feats. But that was then…

Vince Young informed the world yesterday that he indeed will be the cover athlete for EA’s Madden 08. He might as well have announced his retirement from football too. There is no stopping the Madden Curse, the annual jinx that strikes down the newest Madden cover boy. Just ask Eddie George, Michael Vick, or Shaun Alexander. If there was ever a candidate to break the curse it was Alexander. Going into last season he had been injury free and the model of consistency on the field. No dice. One Madden cover later and he had a couple lousy games leading up to a broken foot. Now we’re looking at a guy who has always had an uncanny knack for avoiding injury taking on The Curse. Between his wiry frame and reckless playing style Vince has always looked like a career-ending injury waiting to happen. And now the Madden cover to boot.

So long Vince. It was fun while it lasted. We'll always have Pasadena.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Hittin' the Links: We know who wears the pants in the Benitez home now!

  • Sir Rafa isn't going to Madrid, or anywhere else if he knows what's good for him. [link]
  • Maybe the Texans will have the last laugh? [link]
  • Red Bulls get their guardian Angel. [link]
  • I hope those are tickets in your pocket sir. [link]