There are far more intelligent previews for this series here [BTN], here [BB] and here [Japers']. So I will just toil in the petty derision of a rival instead, reflecting the nature of resource wars in the 21st century:
|2010-11 Guy||G-A-Pts||Cap Hit|
That cherry-picked table is somewhat unfair and quite simplistic (but that's what petty rival-slurring is all about, isn't it? And if we really wanted to be unfair, we'd point out Ranger draft pick and Islander property Al Montoya's EV Save % is .929 while Henrik Lundqvist's is .930).
Point is, being able to throw money around isn't an automatic route to happiness. The Rangers' best players -- who more closely align with the Isles in compensation -- are testament to that.
Make your picks in the poll after the jump.
Capitals (48-23-11) vs. Rangers (44-33-5)
Season Series: 2 NYR Reg. W, 1 NYR SOW, 1 Was Reg. W
SBN Fanatics: Japers' Rink | Blueshirt Banter
|Wednesday, April 13||at Washington, 7:30 p.m.||TSN, VERSUS (JIP)|
|Friday, April 15||at Washington, 7:30 p.m.||TSN, VERSUS|
|Sunday, April 17||at New York, 3:00 p.m.||NBC (HD), TSN|
|Wednesday, April 20||at New York, 7:00 p.m.||TSN, VERSUS|
|*Saturday, April 23||at Washington, 3:00 p.m.||TSN, NBC (HD)|
|*Monday, April 25||at New York, TBD||TSN|
|*Wednesday, April 27||at Washington, TBD||TSN|
Islander Factor: Tom Poti...John Erskine...Bryan McCabe...surely others
Amusing Headline: "Red-Hot Gaborik Could be Key." Wow, that's a lot of ifs.
The season series includes two absolute demolitions of the Caps, 7-0 and 6-0. The second one was in February, long after the Capitals' mid-season course correction when they shifted to a more conservative defensive style. Still, the fact the Capitals did that and rallied to again take the Eastern Conference's top seed is impressive.
So do you go with the team that's better, hotter, and generally more consistent? Or the team that had the Capitals' number and has Henrik Lundqvist, who can erase the edge the Capitals have and be the difference in a long series? And how much does Ryan Callahan's injury affect things?
Heart Says: Rangers swept in three games.
Head Says: A long battle, but the media-friendly circus side stories of Torotorella snapping, Gaborik slumping, and Avery being Avery mean the Rangers don't get it done. Capitals in six.
Seriously though, is this the kind of thing where you'll be tuning in, or looking away? Or looking away until it's safe to tune in?
LHH Full Playoff Bracket Pool: In WebBard's FanPost