D&B Radio Talk Stanley Cup, NBA Finals

After a short hiatus, D&B are back to discuss the recently completed NHL and NBA Playoffs. Click here to give it a listen!

NHL Conference Finals Preview

By Dhani McGeachan
PSDC Puck Man

We’re down to the final four here folks, and what better four squads to be rounding out this lockout shortened campaign but the last four Stanley Cup champions. As a fan of parity, I am not a fan of this. True, the two best teams in the league, Pittsburgh and Chicago, are still alive, and the other two are the last two cup winners, so you’d figure that this is what everyone envisions for a conclusion to the short season. This fan, on the other hand, disagrees. My four least favorite teams being the only ones left forces me to pick the lesser of two evils on both sides. Thus rooting for the Penguins in the East and the Kings in the West. Being a fan of the most overrated team in the NHL (Vancouver) puts me in that predicament as the Bruins and Blackhawks have ended the Canucks playoff hopes in three of the past four seasons, with the LA Kings doing so last year. However, the Penguins have a new face in their lineup, Jarome Iginla, who toiled in small market obscurity playing for the Canucks number one rival Calgary Flames for his entire career before being dealt to Pittsburgh at the trade deadline. That makes it even harder to root for the Pens, but considering they’re facing the team that caused thousands to trash my hometown two years ago due to the Canucks blowing it in the Cup final, it makes it a tiny bit easier to go for the Pens, or more importantly, against the Bruins. [Read more…]

PSDC Random Stat of the Day

By Johnny Griffith
PSDC Stat Man

With Chicago capping off a dramatic comeback for the hockey ages with their 2-1 win in overtime, for just the second time in NHL history, the final four teams remaining in the playoffs are the four most recent Stanley Cup winners.

Boston Bruins – 2011
Chicago Blackhawks – 2010
Los Angeles Kings – 2012
Pittsburgh Penguins – 2009

NHL Playoff Preview: Second Round

By Dhani McGeachan
PSDC Puck Man

The second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs has already begun, and I’m still in shock as to how some of the remaining eight teams managed to make it this far.  My first round predictions weren’t bad if you don’t count wins and losses (LA beating STL in six was the only one I nailed on the head).  However, the only two series I completely missed the boat on were the New York Rangers vs Washington Capitals and the Montreal Canadiens vs the Ottawa Senators.  Now, I did say the NYR vs. Wash series would go seven, but the blue shirts won instead of my pick, the Caps. For some reason I thought Alex Ovechkin had some sort of memorable spring in him and that this may have been the Capitals’ year, I guess not. [Read more…]

NHL Playoff Preview, First Round: Eastern Conference

By Dhani McGeachan
PSDC Puck Man

It’s that time of year again! Time to stop everything and concentrate solely on the best postseason tournament in North American professional sports, the NHL playoffs. Time to neglect your loved ones and your job just because your team is playing for their lives. Time to throw your razor away and emulate the game’s best in attempting to yet again grow a playoff beard. Time to expect to see some upsets, some controversy and some disappointments from the respective squad(s) you choose to follow. Playoff pools are popping up everywhere, bars are staying open later to accommodate 10:30 p.m. start times and beer is once again the beverage of choice for hockey fans everywhere (when isn’t it?) This is an annual rite of passage as we watch as our beloved home team toy with our emotions yet again whilst we find ourselves rooting for obscure teams just because they happen to be playing the team we hate the most. Whether you are a fair weather hockey fan or a die hard, eat and bleed fanatic, this is what it all comes down to, the NHL playoffs. It doesn’t get any better than this. Here are my picks for the first round: Keep in mind, I’m not a genius, nor have I ever claimed to be.

#1 Pittsburgh Penguins vs #8 New York Islanders

Really hard to go against the Pens here, especially with captain Sidney Crosby coming back for the postseason and with former Calgary captain Jarome Iginla on board. Don’t get me wrong, the Isles have made strides in the right direction and have a good, emerging core of young players, but the Penguins are just too solid up front and will easily dispose of the Islanders in four straight. [Read more…]

NHL Trade Deadline Hoopla is Over, Now onto the Stretch Run

By Dhani McGeachan
PSDC Puck Man

Some teams were sellers, some were buyers and some were both this trade deadline. It’s the unofficial start to the stretch run towards Lord Stanley’s Cup, in which the weak teams unload hefty salaries and upcoming free agents to desperate contenders looking for that one last piece to the championship puzzle. This formula has worked in the past for some teams, but the majority of the time it’s just a way to give an aging veteran a shot at winning before his big unrestricted free agent payday is due or he retires, whichever comes first.

Jaromir Jagr comes to mind, as the “Kid From Kladno” Jagr tore up the league in the early ’90s alongside Mario Lemieux for the Penguins, winning back-to-back Stanley Cups, before being dealt to Washington, then the Rangers, then to the KHL for three seasons before coming back last season for one stint with the Flyers. This year the Dallas Stars decided to give the then 40-year-old Jagr a one-year contract, in which he’s been playing like he’s still in his 20s, but with the Stars focused on the future as opposed to the now, they flipped him to perennial powers the Boston Bruins.

[Read more…]

NHL On The Fly Preview: Atlantic Division

By Dhani McGeachan
PSDC Puck Man

Atlantic Division Preview:

Fifth place: New York Islanders

With their four Stanley Cup championships completely fading from the rear view mirror and recent ineptitude surrounding this once proud franchise, it’s hard to even think the Islanders at one time were the class of the league. After all, it was between 1980 and 1983 that they were on top, with a star studded hall of fame laden roster consisting of the likes of Mike Bossy, Brian Trottier, Denis Potvin, Clark Gillies and Billy Smith, just to name a few, and led by legendary coach Al Arbour, the mighty Isles were unstoppable for that brief shining moment. A four year dynasty that would’ve been longer had it not been for some kids up in Edmonton named Gretzky and Messier just coming into their prime and taking the Isles mantle away from them. With all but a small handful of the current Isles yet to be born during those days, it isn’t surprising that winning is foreign to this young group. [Read more…]