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NHL Playoff Pick 'em: New York [expletives] vs. Ottawa Senators

With four NHL playoff Game 1's tonight (or "games one" if you prefer to avoid vulgar speech), it's hard to keep track of what's happening where. (This is why expansion to the Pacific time zone is a godsend to the insatiable hockey fan, turning each evening into a marathon of hockey wonder. Thanks, Bettman and the westward-dreamers who came before you!)

But doggone it we do polls for each series here and we can only attach one radio-button poll per post, so let's do this thing. Programming will return to normal after all eight series launch.

Nyr-slim_medium Ott-lowslim_medium
1 Short Island Smurfs (51-24-7, 109 pts.) vs. 8 Senators (41-31-10, 92 pts.)
Season Series: Ottawa - 2 Reg. W, 1 SOW, 1 Reg. L
I Suppose They're People Too: Blueshirt Banter | Silver Seven

I already had to write more than I care to about Dolan's Team in the series preview at SB Nation's NHL hub, so check that or feel my visible pain at praising that team in the preview clip for da YouTube. The poll is below.

An Upset Here Would Be Just Terrible

The Senators are an interesting team in an interesting franchise transition. Daniel Alfredsson isn't going to get that elusive Stanley Cup before he's done, but he can at least help pass the torch as they retool.

In addition to possessing the best mustache this side of Lanny McDonald, Paul MacLean looks like a great hire, and it will be fun to watch what he does as that roster evolves over the next few years. Jason Spezza is like all grown up now, playing more on the interior and tackling three-zone responsibility.

Also fun: How MacLean matches up with John Torotorella's favorites, who have defied expectations all season long but still carry that background aroma of "not happening."

Not that it's relevant to today's team, but the Senators franchise has won from the 8th seed position before, heh heh.

Pick 'em

Vote your true expectation in the poll below, but in comments you can do our traditional head/heart explanation, like so:

Head Says: Rangers in 6. Damn it.

Heart Says: Senators in 4. Always four. New York media weep.

Other Places to Leave Your Picks

TV Schedule

Thursday, April 12, 2012 7 p.m. Ottawa at NY Rangers NHL Network, CBC
Saturday, April 14, 2012 7 p.m. Ottawa at NY Rangers NBC Sports Network, CBC
Monday, April 16, 2012 7:30 p.m. NY Rangers at Ottawa CBC, CNBC
Wednesday, April 18, 2012 7:30 p.m. NY Rangers at Ottawa CBC, CNBC
*Saturday, April 21, 2012 7 p.m. Ottawa at NY Rangers NBC Sports Network, CBC
*Monday, April 23, 2012 TBD NY Rangers at Ottawa TBD
*Thursday, April 26, 2012 TBD Ottawa at NY Rangers TBD