Thursday, April 12, 2018

Goalie Announcements (Apr 12)

It's night two in the Stanley Cup Playoffs and the other five matchups kick off tonight, meaning that it will be a very busy night.

Now, that we have all 23 teams entered in the pool, we'll also have a little bit more backdrop to these games tonight.  Everyone wants to know how these match-ups shake out, I'm sure, so let's get going then!

Keith Kinkaid versus Andrei Vasilevskiy
Yes, one of the more popular players on the hockey pool sheet, Tampa goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy, begins his quest to become the best player in the playoff pool and help guide his team to the finals and the eventual Cup win.  He'll kick off against the less-than-popular Devils, who are playing Keith Kinkaid tonight, as opposed to selection sheet goalie Cory Schneider, but no one was going to pick a Devils goalie, matching up against the Lightning, so this isn't really big news.

Frederik Andersen versus Tuukka Rask
Boston was crowned the favourite from the selection sheet this year, as they hold a 43-34 selection edge over Toronto and the goaltending match-up is 4-2 for Tuukka Rask over Frederik Andersen.  I think the close race in selections does suggest that this will be a close series and I'm sure many think that way.  This opening game in Boston should be rocking, but it's anyone's series.

Sergei Bobrovsky versus Philipp Grubauer
The Washington Capitals are opening up their series with a huge curveball, sending Philipp Grubauer to the crease for Game 1, opting to keep sheet goalie Braden Holtby on the bench to kick off the series against the Blue Jackets.  That means that the one team that picked Holtby in the pool is going to be awfully bummed, if the Capitals make a run with their number two.  No such curveballs coming from Columbus, who will be going with their number one, Sergei Bobrovsky, who managed two selections of his own this year.  Overall, it's 48-15 for the Capitals in selections, so it may still be their year.

Jonathan Bernier versus Pekka Rinne
The Western Conference's most popular goalie goes tonight in Nashville against a non-sheet goalie, as Pekka Rinne and the Predators will host Jonathan Bernier and the Avalanche in Game 1 of their series tonight.  The Avalanche received next to no faith in this series, except for one team, that thinks that the upset is seriously possible... and maybe it is?  This is why they play the games, just to find out for sure.

Martin Jones versus John Gibson
In the late, late game tonight, the Anaheim Ducks will play host to the San Jose Sharks in a California standoff on the pond.  No surprises are expected from either crease tonight, as it should be Martin Jones against John Gibson, with the San Jose keeper getting the only vote of confidence in the pool, 1-0 over his counterpart.  The Sharks are believed to be the favourite, according to the pool, leading the picks, 35-26, so this could be an upset (that isn't really an upset), if Anaheim gets through.

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