Stanley Cup Final Preview: Experience v. Emotion

Fourteen teams down, two remain. The time has come to find our 2017 Stanley Cup Champion, but who will reign supreme? The Pittsburgh Penguins and the Nashville Predators have both shown they deserve to be here, but how will one beat the other? This is where we swoop in to tell you “We have the answer! Listen to us!”. Well, that sounds awfully desperate, but you should probably listen to us. Regardless, this preview will be slightly different in comparison to our others, because all of us here at Onside Access will be making our predictions, and tell you why we feel that way (whether or not you agree with it remains to be seen). Let’s get to it.

Series begins Monday Night (tonight) @ 8:00 PM ET in Pittsburgh

Credit: Peter Diana/Post-Gazette

Brian’s Prediction

I’m expecting a great series, but I’m sure most people do. However, I find myself leaning one way when it comes to my pick. Both are fantastic teams in their own respective ways. Pittsburgh with their high level forward core, and Nashville with their defensive game and goaltending. Nashville has found a depth scoring element in these playoffs, which has helped them greatly (I’m looking at you, Colton Sissons), and could play a major part in this series. The Predators are finally playing to their potential, even without their #1 center, Ryan Johansen.  The Penguins are fresh off their game seven 2OT win over the Ottawa Senators, and while they may be rather banged up, they are still remarkably dangerous. As the saying goes: “defence wins championships”, I believe this will hold true in the final, and the strong goaltending of Pekka Rinne will help lift the Preds to their first Stanley Cup championship.

My Pick: Nashville in 6

Conn Smythe Winner: Pekka Rinne

Credit: Charles LeClaire/USA TODAY Sports

Reebehl’s Pick

Listen. I’ve had the Penguins going all the way since the beginning of these playoffs, and that hasn’t changed at all (they’re my saving grace for my bracket). My reasoning is rather simple, but I think it’s sound. The Penguins have done this dance before, and that alone gives them an upper hand over the Predators. Don’t get me wrong, I think the Preds are a fantastic team, and what they’ve done this year is nothing short of astounding. However, as I said, they’ve haven’t even been past the second round, and that alone is swaying my pick towards the Steel City. The talent level contributes to that too, of course. Well, I told you this would be simple.

My Pick: Pittsburgh in 6

Conn Smythe Winner:  Pekka Rinne

Credit: Sanford Myers/Getty Images

Conor’s Pick

I’ve struggled mightily making this pick, which certainly didn’t amuse Brian as he tried to plan out this article. Regardless, I’ve finally settled on a team, and I’m going to tell you why. Nashville has looked rather dominant throughout these playoffs, with the exception of only a few games. The Penguins have still looked fantastic; however, I do think the Senators found a way to get into the head of the 2016 Stanley Cup winning Penguins. They haven’t looked quite like that dominant team as we all thought they would be, largely in part to how beat up they are. That absolutely is not me saying the Pens don’t deserve to be there, because they do, but they just haven’t lived up to their reputation as that complete and predicted force. The Preds, on the other hand, were predicted to be a force in the central at the start of the season. This was a surprise at the start of the playoffs with the sweep of the Blackhawks, and it’s a surprise now as they prep for Game 1 of the Cup Finals. While I’m sure it’ll be a remarkable series, my pick (I’m still battling with this) Nashville.

My Pick: Nashville in 7

Conn Smythe Winner: Pekka Rinne

So, there you have it, Brian and Conor pick Nashville, and Reebehl picks Pittsburgh. Someone will be laughed at by the other, but who will do the laughing? Regardless of the outcome, this will be a historic Stanley Cup Final. We will either see a first time Stanley Cup champion, or we’ll see the first cup repeat since 1998. I’m sure it will be thrilling.

Who do you think will capture Lord Stanley’s Cup? Let us know in the comments below!

2 thoughts on “Stanley Cup Final Preview: Experience v. Emotion”

  1. I’m so tired of Crosby this Crosby that! Last nights game showed Pekka Rinne do the most amazing save (you know the one) and all we heard from the announcers was wow look at Crosby.


    1. It’s mostly the anticipation of the insiders, waiting for something flashy done by the Penguins stars. After the fact, I’ve seen a lot about Rinne’s save. Thanks for the feedback!

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