After a great start two weeks ago everything came crashing back to reality last week. I ended up down 2 bananas for the week so my two-week total looks like this:
Week 1: +13 bananas
Week 2: -2 bananas
Total: +11 bananas
Vancouver Canucks @ Pittsburgh Penguins
VAN – Kevin Bieksa, Sami Salo, Rick Rypien
PIT – Sergei Gonchar, M.A. Fleury, Ryan Whitney
These two teams may not be aware of each others existence. They’ve only met twice since December of 2003. The Canucks and Penguins looks to be a battle of two equally-matched teams. The Penguins have the star power and Vancouver seems to be working well as a team with everyone contributing. Personally, I wouldn’t touch this game with a 10-foot Pizza Sub (Hi Kyle Wellwood) but I know some of you can’t resist the action. I think the home-ice advantage will allow the Pens to get the matchups they desire and will give them the slight edge.
I look for Luongo to continue his stellar play but I think the Penguins PP will get one or two by him.
1 banana on PIT to win
1 banana on the UNDER (5.5)
New York Rangers @ Ottawa Senators
NYR – Scott Gomez
OTT – Mike Fisher, Chris Neil, Ryan Shannon
Ottawa is falling faster than the Canadian Dollar. The Senators have lost at least 5 in a row…I’ve lost track…and the chances of turning things against the Rangers don’t look good. The Rangers have the 2nd stingiest defence in the league averaging only 2.3 goals against per game. Coincidentally, the Senators have the second worst offense in the league averaging 2.3 goals for per game. Look for Ottawa to score 2.3 goals…haha, too obvious, I know…sorry. The only thing Ottawa has going for them in this matchup is that they have a better powerplay. Unfortunately, the Rangers have the second best PK at 90.1% and give up the fewest powerplay chances.
Look for Lundqvist to rebound from the Vancouver onslaught and look for Ottawa to continue their non-scoring ways.
1 banana on NYR to win
2 bananas on the UNDER (5.5)
Columbus Blue Jackets @ Atlanta Thrashers
CLB – Rostislav Klesla
ATL – Todd White, Zach Bogosian, Kari Lehtonen
Atlanta was putting together a nice little run until they went to Pennsylvania. The Keystone State (yes, I had to look that up) was not kind as they lost 1-goal games to both the Flyers and the Penguins. The Thrashers give up an average of 3.6 goals per game which is the second most in the NHL. They also allow the third most powerplay goals. A saving grace is the fact that the Blue Jackets have the worst powerplay in the league. It’s clicking at only 12.1%.
I look for Leclaire to rebound from his nightmare game against Edmonton where he gave up 7 goals o