It’s almost here. It’s almost fucking here. That wonderful day when a new NHL season begins, and I can go back to comfortably ignoring my obligations while daydreaming about the Sharks hoisting the Cup in the Spring (I mean it has to be their year this time, right?).
Wednesday, October 8 is only eight days away. I can’t wait for it to get here.
But for Sharks players, it will be filled with even more energy, as they have to start their Cup campaign in L.A. against the stupid, butthole, good-for-nothing, Kings. Not only do the Sharks have to play the team that knocked them out right away, but they also have to watch them lift their Stanley Cup Champions banner into the rafters.
I hate the Kings. Fuck.
So now that a new season is nearly upon us, I wanted to take a moment to make my pre-season predictions, for the Sharks, the Pacific Division, and the playoffs altogether.
Prediction Number 1: Joe Pavelski will be the new Sharks captain.
Not that this is a real earth-shattering prediction. I think most people expect Pavs to take over the C this season. And if the Sharks’ new marketing efforts are any indication, they’re looking at Pavelski, Logan Couture, and Tomas Hertl to take over as their captain and two alternates. But if they don’t make Vlasic at least an alternate, that’s a huge mistake.
Prediction Number 2: The Sharks will continue to publicly alienate both Thornton and Marleau.
But privately, they’ll suck up as much as possible. Not because they respect them as players like all of us fans do, but because they want to find a way to move them. Still. I just don’t get it.
Prediction Number 3: Vancouver won’t suck nearly as much.
They’ll still finish no higher than 4th in the Pacific, but the Canucks will improve upon last season. The Sedins will play well. Ryan Miller will too. Nick Bonino will be alright, and they won’t even miss Ryan Kesler that much. The Sharks will still find a way to beat them every time, though.
Prediction Number 4: The Ducks will win the Pacific, Again.
I hate to say this, because of how much I hate the Ducks and all, but they are going to win the division again. They’ve added Ryan Kesler and Dany Heatley, both of whom I think will help them. However, because this is a Bruce Boudreau coached team, they’ll lose in Game 7 of the first round of the playoffs. Brucey likes doing that.
Prediction Number 5: The Sharks will finish 2nd in the Pacific.
Because they’re good like at in the regular season.
Prediction Number 6: The Avalanche will struggle this year.
The Avs will be the surprise disappointment this season, finishing 4th in the Central division.
Prediction Number 6: The Blackhawks will win the West.
I mean, it’s their turn after all. The Blackhawks will beat the Kings to get there.
Prediction Number 7: The Penguins will win the Cup.
I honestly don’t know why I’m saying this, but it has to happen again sometime, right? Maybe a new coach will get them over the hump.
Here’s my final predictions, by division: