Jun 11, 2013; Chicago, IL, USA; A general view of the ice during media day in preparation for game one of the 2013 Stanley Cup Final between the Boston Bruins and Chicago Blackhawks at the United Center. Mandatory Credit: Rob Grabowski-USA TODAY Sports

Bruins off to Chicago for game one tonight.

It was a wet and crappy day in Boston, but that didn’t stop thousands of fans from sending off the Boston Bruins as they head to the windy city to play the Chicago Blackhawks for the Stanley Cup. The thousand plus fans that were allowed inside got to high-five their favorite players as they got on the bus to head to Logan Airport. A lot of things have happened since 2011, but most of the lineup looks the same.  The players were surprised and excited that the fans would be here in force to cheer on their team.

“I really wasn’t expecting this many people here, but it’s a lot of fun to see,” commented Brad Marchand. “It really gets us excited to get out there and get things under way.”

“It’s awesome getting the fans here and packed the whole time, and it’s louder because we’re indoors,” said Daniel Paille. “But it’s definitely awesome to see the support that we get from our fans.”

Back then, I barely understood a forward from a defenseman. What a couple of years and a few good people can do for ya.

I was asked to give my prediction for the series, and it was the hardest one I had to figure out this year. I’ve gotten individual games wrong, but I called Bruins-Blackhawks in the Finals before the start of the first round. What makes the prediction so hard for me is that both teams play the same way. There are only marginal differences in speed (advantage Chicago) and toughness (advantage Boston). Both teams play like teams (and that’s what killed the Penguins.) and played a layered defense. Boston and Chicago have excellent goalies, and the players that have come up from the AHL have quickly adapted to the NHL life.

There was also the lack of relevant data. Sure we’ve seen both squads play and defeat three other teams to get here, but they never played each other this year. The lockout and the abbreviated season forced both teams to stay within their conference this year in order to get the forty-eight game season to work. So, there was just comparisons to each other.  So off I went to the world wide web, trying to find the info I needed to lock up the intangibles. Looking around the Internet, a lot of people are wagering heavily on the Blackhawks winning in six, but I disagree.

My official prediction is that the Boston Bruins become the 2013 Stanley Cup Champions by winning in five games.

Tags: Boston Bruins Stanley Cup Finals

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