A Prediction Of The 2024 NHL Playoffs (Pt.2)

Well, here we are once again going through the NHL playoff bracket and making some predictions about what will happen. You may have disagreed with some of the things that I predicted in my first round one article but I’m here to double down and be even more wrong. So let’s not waste anytime and get right into this bracket that will be based off my round one bracket. This one will be the rest of the entire playoffs and will once again have brief reasonings as to why I made the decisions I made.

Round 2

Florida Panthers vs Tampa Bay Lightning

Regardless of what my predictions are, I want this series to happen at some point in the playoffs because it will be a blood bath. The battle of Florida is one that has heated up over the years and it seems pretty clear that these two teams don’t like each other. We are in for another war if they do end up playing each other this time around. However, I think this time around, the Panthers will get their revenge from the last series. The Panthers have gotten more skilled and meaner since the last time these two teams played in 2022. The Lightning have been an on and off team this season due to some injuries and losing some key players in the offseason and I don’t think they’re recovered enough to beat the Panthers. The Panthers are a deeper team and are true cup contenders this year whereas the Lightning have a few question marks. I’m going with the Panthers in 6.

Pittsburgh Penguins vs Carolina Hurricanes

The Penguins pulling off a first-round upset would shock the entire hockey world as they went from barely making the playoffs to now beating the top team in the east. I think they have the ability to do it and Sidney Crosby will be spectacular when the playoffs begin. However, this is as far as I have the Penguins going. The Carolina Hurricanes are a juggernaut this year and them having Jake Guentzel now may give him more motivation to beat his former team. If Freddy Andersen is as good as he has been to end the year then I think the Hurricanes will have no problem getting past the first two rounds. I think the Penguins don’t match up very well against the Hurricanes and that the Hurricanes will overwhelm them with their deep roster and good goaltending. The Penguins will put up a fight but I have the Hurricanes in 6.

Colorado Avalanche vs Dallas Stars

On paper, this series looks to be spectacular and one that will go down to the wire. However, I think there’s a clear winner here and it’s the Dallas Stars. The main reason I say that is I am not confident in the Avalanche’s goaltending. Alexander Georgiev hasn’t had a very good year, and trust me, I know as someone who had him on my fantasy team. On top of that, the Avalanche’s defence has been spotty at times which makes matters worse. The Stars are just so well balanced and I think Ottinger will hit another gear when the playoffs start. The Stars will smoother the Avalanche in this series and beat them in 6 games.

Vancouver Canucks vs Edmonton Oilers

Okay, I may take some heat for this one. I have the Canucks winning this series. Yes, I know you think I’m just a homer but let me explain. All things considered, I think Edmonton should win this series, but they won’t. The reason I say that is I think Thatcher Demko may just steal this series for the Canucks. It’s virtually impossible to stop Connor McDavid and Leon Draisatl but if the Canucks can at least keep up with the Oilers goal scoring, then I think Demko could win them some games they shouldn’t be winning. If J.T Miller, Elias Pettersson or Elias Lindholm can match up well against the Oilers’ big two then the Oilers may have some trouble. The Oilers will put up a valiant fight but I have the Canucks taking this in 7 games.

Round 3

Carolina Hurricanes vs Florida Panthers

A rematch of the Eastern Conference finals from last year is what we get for round three. Unfortunately for the Hurricanes, I think it ends the same way as last year. The Panthers are a team that can perfectly match up against the Hurricanes as they can essentially bully them and win the series. If Sergei Bobrovsky can play well in this series then I think the big guns on Florida like Matthew Tkachuk, Alex Barkov and Sam Reinhart will be able to put up big performances to outmatch the star power on Carolina. It’ll be a good series but I have the Panthers taking it in 7.

Vancouver Canucks vs Dallas Stars

Alright, here’s where my bias ends. I think the Stars are going to take this series as I don’t see any team in the West outmatching them. The Stars are good at pretty much every position and the crazy thing is that they still have some younger guys coming will make an impact for this team. As I’ve mentioned earlier I think Jake Ottinger will be good in these playoffs and I wouldn’t be surprised if he is a Conn Smyth favourite for the Stars, The experience factor also helps for the Stars as the Canucks core has only made the playoffs once before this and it wasn’t the same because it was when there was no crowd. The Canucks will try their best but I think the Stars are too good for them. I have the Stars winning this in 6 and advancing to the Stanley Cup Finals.

Stanley Cup Finals

Florida Panthers vs Dallas Stars

So here we are in the Stanley Cup Finals with two teams that have both lost in the Cup Finals in recent memory. The Stars fell to the Lightning in the 2020 finals and the Panthers lost last year’s finals to the Vegas Golden Knights. The Finals will often come down to which team is the healthiest so it’s sometimes difficult to predict. However, I think these two teams match up really well with each other. Both have deep forward cores, both have three dependable defensive pairings, and both have goaltenders who can carry the team to the finals. It will be razor-thin close and will be a fantastic series of two teams who can grind each other down. But in the end, I think the Florida Panthers slay their demons from last year and win the Stanley Cup. One of the biggest issues for the Panthers last year was that they had so many injuries when the Finals rolled around and they just couldn’t keep up with Golden Knights. I mean Matthew Tkachuk was playing with a broken sternum. There was just no way the Panthers were winning that one. However, this time around, I think the depth of the Panthers will be able to overpower the Star’s depth and put away this series. The Stars will come close, but I have the Panthers winning the Stanley Cup in 7 games.

I’m very excited to be proven wrong about all of these predictions throughout the next two months because that’s the beauty of playoff hockey. I hope you’re ready for the ride because this year’s playoffs are bound to be a great one and it’s one that Canucks fans finally have a chance to enjoy.

Happy playoffs season!

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