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NHL Playoff Predictions-Covid Cup Edition

MindzEye

Wayward Ditch Pig
I mean the Raps won a bunch of playoff rounds and kept running into LeBron. Not sure that's a great comparison.
If the Raptors ran into Lebron in the 1st round every year instead of Washington or Indiana....

Call me when the Leafs lose to a bad team in the playoffs before we go down this road. The overall point was though that the Raptors developed a reputation, won a title, and still haven't shaken that reputation. Waiting for the media to treat your team rationally is a bad strategy. They live on tropes and bullshit.
 

leaffan2005

Well-known member
Also 2005, don't act like you weren't the number 1 Raps attacker before their ship. It was warranted though, don't get me wrong.
I mean I wouldn't say I was the number 1 Raps attacker. They underperformed for sure and deserved some level of criticism.

I get the Leafs have faced good teams over the past 3 years but I mean you could argue we had more talent than Boston in both of those years and had them down 3-2 last year with a home game to boot up 1-0 in the 1st period.

The Raps were always an inferior team to the LeBron-led Cavs. While they were frustrating losses, they were entirely unsurprising for a team led by DeMar Derozen. The Leafs have the top end talent, amazing depth and just an overall stacked team that has lost in the 1st round 3 straight years and just completed a very up and down season. Why should they be getting any kind of benefit of the doubt until they actually do anything? Columbus lost a lot of talent from last year but they are a tough team to play against with a few guys that have had some decent playoff success in the past and they are coming off a huge upset slaughter of Tampa just last year.
 

Preston

Well-known member
I get the Leafs have faced good teams over the past 3 years but I mean you could argue we had more talent than Boston in both of those years and had them down 3-2 last year with a home game to boot up 1-0 in the 1st period.
Let's be honest. Only zeke could argue that.
 

leaffan2005

Well-known member
Let's be honest. Only zeke could argue that.
Really? They have an elite 1st line and top pair but really their 2nd-4th lines and the rest of their d-core are really very underwhelming. Rask has been better than Anderson but also hasn't been a world beater against us. Top to bottom I would take the Leafs roster and I don't think I would be in the minority.
 

MindzEye

Wayward Ditch Pig
Really? They have an elite 1st line and top pair but really their 2nd-4th lines and the rest of their d-core are really very underwhelming. Rask has been better than Anderson but also hasn't been a world beater against us. Top to bottom I would take the Leafs roster and I don't think I would be in the minority.
and we went to 7 against them twice. Regardless of whether you would take our roster over theirs, they're an elite team.
 

leaffan2005

Well-known member
and we went to 7 against them twice. Regardless of whether you would take our roster over theirs, they're an elite team.
Fair enough, but that is what differentiates the Leafs from the Raptors example. The Raps were never an elite team and never were on par with LeBron's teams. There was no semblance of underachieiving when we lost to them, even if the sweep left a bad taste in people's mouths.
 

zeke

Well-known member
last year they were pretty close.

Matthews - Pastrnak
Marner - Marchand
Tavares - Bergeron

Nylander - Krejci
Hyman --- Debrusk
Kadri ------ Coyle

Kapanen -- Kuraly
Johnsson - Johansson
Marleau --- Nordstrom

Brown ----- Heinen
Moore ----- Acciari
Ennis ------ Wagner
Gauthier -- Backes


Rielly ----- McAvoy
Muzzin -- Chara

Gardiner - Krug
Hainsey - Carlo

Zaitsev -- Grzelcyk
Dermott - Clifton


Andersen - Rask



But it really hurt us that Nylander, Kadri, and Gardiner were either injured or missing or shadows of themselves.
 

worm

Well-known member
Is anyone other than Zeke suggesting that they should be treated as contenders? Acting like they're not underdogs against a horseshit team with as close to no talent as a playoff team can be isn't a big ask.
of course predicting games is pretty much impossible due to the layoff and the covid
 

Preston

Well-known member
Fair enough, but that is what differentiates the Leafs from the Raptors example. The Raps were never an elite team and never were on par with LeBron's teams. There was no semblance of underachieiving when we lost to them, even if the sweep left a bad taste in people's mouths.
The Leafs never finished ahead or even very close to Boston in the regular season. They were underdogs in both years and last year in particular they lost because of special teams + Andersen being worse than Rask in game 7. I'd see your point if they got fucking destroyed but they didn't. They had a great fucking series and if they got through Boston, who fucking knows how far they would have gone. That's a top 2-3 team right there that Boston has consistently had.
 

leafman101

Well-known member
I find it tough to say the Leafs under performed by taking teams that won the Cup and made the Cup finals the last 2 years to 6 and 7 games (twice).

You can't just ignore the opponent. The lost to two of the best teams in the league, in close series.

The fact that it was the first round is just a byproduct of the NHL's dumb seeding system. They had to go against the #2 team in the conference the last two years as a #4 and #5 seed. I'm not sure why beating the Islanders/Pens in the first round and then losing to the Bruins in the second would drastically change an opinion of the team.
 

MindzEye

Wayward Ditch Pig
Fair enough, but that is what differentiates the Leafs from the Raptors example. The Raps were never an elite team and never were on par with LeBron's teams. There was no semblance of underachieiving when we lost to them, even if the sweep left a bad taste in people's mouths.
The Raptors were very much an elite regular-season team. A fatally flawed team due to poor coaching and a flawed star player, but you don't win 55 games every year without being pretty fucking good.
 

Preston

Well-known member
I'm all for criticizing their inconsistent regular season play. It has been downright embarrassing from time to time. But throwing a bitch fit over their playoff performances is really really stupid. They've been great in every series against some real tough teams.
 

leaffan2005

Well-known member
Put it this way.

Did the Raps get picked by anybody to beat the Cavs? Was anybody shocked that this happened?

They may have been an elite regular season team but they had no chance in hell to win it all and it was painfully obvious from the get-go.
 

Preston

Well-known member
of course predicting games is pretty much impossible due to the layoff and the covid
Hockey in general is often determined by the luckiest team, particularly in longer 7 game series'. This covid layoff thing throws a new wrench into an already heavily luck influenced sport. Should be weird.
 

Preston

Well-known member
Put it this way.

Did the Raps get picked by anybody to beat the Cavs? Was anybody shocked that this happened?
I think this is a poor point regardless because no one picked the Leafs the last three years, but in 2017-2018 the Cavs were largely a mess and the Raps were regular season world beaters. Many of us here had them beating the Cavs and they lost in a pretty embarrassing way.
 

leaffan2005

Well-known member
I think this is a poor point regardless because no one picked the Leafs the last three years, but in 2017-2018 the Cavs were largely a mess and the Raps were regular season world beaters. Many of us here had them beating the Cavs and they lost in a pretty embarrassing way.
I saw plenty of people pick the Leafs in the last 2 seasons. And the Cavs being a mess didn't change the fact that LeBron was never going to lose any of those series'. The Raps were massive underdogs and should have been every time they faced them. The Leafs/Bruins were a lot closer in terms of talent and expected outcome.
 

Preston

Well-known member
I saw plenty of people pick the Leafs in the last 2 seasons. And the Cavs being a mess didn't change the fact that LeBron was never going to lose any of those series'. The Raps were massive underdogs and should have been every time they faced them. The Leafs/Bruins were a lot closer in terms of talent and expected outcome.
Yeah you're misremembering. The media was legitimately split on the series.

Forgrave: A difficult series to predict. The Raptors were tied for the best home record in the NBA, and have home-court advantage all through the Eastern Conference playoffs; the Cavaliers were basically a .500 road team this season. The Raptors biggest strength may be their depth; the Cavaliers are, um, a bit imbalanced, with a supporting cast that veers between mediocre and awful (and lately more toward the awful). And yet: LeBronLeBronLeBronLeBronLeBron. Maybe his body breaks down after a grueling seven-game series against the Indiana Pacers. But I'm not going to bet against LeBron. Prediction: Cavaliers in 7.

Botkin: I picked the Cavs at the start of the playoffs, but to see how much they had to struggle to get through Indiana, LeBron having to avenge 42 points in the four wins, I just think it's too much to ask of one guy against a deep Toronto team that has Fred VanVleet back. Kyle Lowry will have a big series with Cleveland's defensive attention focused more on DeRozan, and I don't see Tristan Thompson repeating his Game 7 effort over an entire series. Prediction: Raptors in 6.


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And then they got massacred in an embarrassing way.
 
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