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Who Ducks Fans Should Root For In The Playoffs

The answer to all your questions

NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-New Jersey Devils at Tampa Bay Lightning Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Reality has finally set in for most Anaheim Ducks fans. Our team is out of the playoffs after (cover your ears) being swept in four games by the San Jose Sharks. Yet fortunately for hockey fans everywhere, we still have over two full series of hockey left in the 2017-2018 season. There is still plenty of entertainment out there before we must accept that we are stuck with baseball until football in September and hockey in October. So, the big question left is who should us Ducks fans be rooting for to win the cup?

Western Conference

San Jose Sharks

Let’s get this one out of the way so we can keep suppressing our hockey feelings. We can take solace that this is the team that knocked the Ducks out of the playoffs. Some people out there might want them to go as far as possible to show that the Ducks are not that bad. Well, let’s not get too crazy here. The most likable player on the Sharks roster is Joe Thornton. However, he is not playing so why should we even consider cheering for San Jose?

Dump and change.

Vegas Golden Knights

The true darlings left in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Ducks fans shouldn’t feel any ill will toward Vegas unless we’re a little jealous about the quick success of a new expansion team. The Smith-Marchessault-Karlsson is the most electric line left in these playoffs. Their creativity and speed is like watching a beer league game on steroids. Marc-Andre Fleury is as likeable as they get in net. The anti-Jonathan Quick. Vegas even blasts John Wick music every time they come out of their locker room. It doesn’t get any better than that in May. But do we want another Pacific Division team stealing our thunder? No, folks. We don’t.

Dump and change.

Nashville Predators

If you enjoy bright yellow jerseys while wondering what life could be like doused in Bud Light, the Predators might be your match made in heaven. That might even be a Carrie Underwood song. Nashville is arguably the most complete team this season. Their defense is the toughest in the entire league led by Norris trophy finalist PK Subban and captain Roman Josi. Unlike past years, their offense is starting to catch up as well. Although not producing yet, Kyle Turris was a sneaky good pickup. Forsberg will probably have another highlight reel goal sooner rather than later. Nashville is playing Winnipeg in the second round, and I could see the winner of the series playing for the Stanley Cup in June. But will Pekka Rinne be able to hold off Patrick Laine for seven games? Nope.

Dump and change.

Winnipeg Jets

The Jets are an up and coming team that looks like they finally found the right combination of experience and talent. Blake Wheeler, Mark Scheifele, Patrick Laine, Nikolaj Ehlers, Kyle Connor. The Jets are stacked on offense and have a fairly decent defense. Jacob Trouba is severely underrated while Dustin Byfuglien is a freak of nature. Connor Hellebuyck is a hundred times better than Ondrej Pavelec so that’s at least a goal less against per game. The White Out every home game is one of the best sights of these playoffs. Oh, Canada. The NHL headquarters are in New York, and the league is obviously out to get you. Teemu Selanne never ended up back in Winnipeg for a reason.

Dump and change.

Eastern Conference

Pittsburgh Penguins

The Penguins are trying to become the first team to win three consecutive Stanley Cups in 35 years. That would be an amazing accomplishment even if they are lucky to have the likes of Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin suiting up for them every night. Even the most casual fan can appreciate how hard that is to pull off. The pros for rooting for the Penguins are quite simple. You must love Phil Kessel. He oozes Midwest confidence and isn’t afraid to embrace a hot dog joke or two. However, Ducks fans can’t forget that Justin Schultz is still a big part of their blue line. Boooooo. It also doesn’t help that wherever the Penguins go, Pierre McGuire is never far behind.

Dump and change.

Washington Capitals

Is this finally the Capitals year? They have a legitimate shot at beating a banged-up Penguins team. Although their roster isn’t what it has been in the past, Alex Ovechkin is on an absolute offensive tear. Through only nine games this postseason, he already has 8 goals and 5 assists. That’s leadership and then some right there. The best part about hitching yourself to the Washington bandwagon is that you could be lucky enough to tell your friends, “I told you so.” The drawback of that is that once they finally break their fans’ hearts again, you’ll always remember that you picked the wrong team.

Dump and change.

Boston Bruins

Fast, old time hockey at its finest. Patrice Bergeron is what every Ducks fan wishes Ryan Kesler was. You know, a first line center instead of a third liner given too many minutes to win the occasional faceoff. David Pastrnak can’t be stopped and will soon be the best #88 in the league. Tuuka Rask even threw his skate blade as far as he could to argue a supposed miss call. That’s Happy Gilmore in a nutshell. But as long as Brad Marchand is still out on the ice biting referees, how can we root for the Bruins?

Dump and change.

Tampa Bay Lightning

The Lightning have been one of the most exciting teams to watch all year. Steven Stamkos is finally healthy, Kucherov is a goal scoring monster, and Victor Hedman will win multiple Norris trophies in his career. We should cheer for another warm weather team since it legitimizes expansion. I almost picked the Lightning as my adopted 2018 champions. I was ready to board the bandwagon, but then the worst thing a team could do happened. Nikita Kucherov knocked Sami Vatanen out of the first-round series with a concussion.

Dump and change.

Even though this second round has been the most exciting hockey in years and shows the type of style all NHL teams must adapt to, no team out there is worth rooting for. They all suck in some way or another. All you can do is sit back and enjoy the game as it should be played. After the quickest, most entertaining team wins the Cup, just remember that we have to watch Randy Carlyle hockey all of next year.