Russo's Eastern Conference predictions

  • Updated: September 30, 2013 - 9:35 PM
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Sidney Crosby and the Pittsburgh Penguins will be favored by many to win the Eastern Conference.

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MICHAEL RUSSO’S EASTERN CONFERENCE PREDICTIONS

1. PITTSBURGH PENGUINS

2013: 36-12-0, 1st in East (72 points)

• Goalie Marc-Andre Fleury broke down yet again in the postseason, but this is the regular season and Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and James Neal will light it up.

2. BOSTON BRUINS

2013: 28-14-5, 4th in East (62 points)

• Tremendous on the back end, starting with goalie Tuukka Rask, and now the B’s add Loui Eriksson to a deep group of forwards.

3. DETROIT RED WINGS

2013: 24-16-8, 7th in West (56 points)

• Most felt the Red Wings would collapse last season without Nicklas Lidstrom. Didn’t happen, and now they move to East, where they should thrive.

4. OTTAWA SENATORS

2013: 25-17-6, 7th in East (56 points)

• Forward Jason Spezza and defenseman Erik Karlsson are healthy, and the addition of goal scorer Bobby Ryan should more than make up for the loss of Daniel Alfredsson.

5. NEW YORK RANGERS

2013: 26-18-4, 6th in East (56 points)

• John Tortorella wore out his welcome, and now this tight group presumably will breathe easier behind goalie Henrik Lundqvist and rising star Derek Stepan.

6. TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS

2013: 26-17-5, 5th in East (57 points)

• Made the playoffs last year for the first time in eternity and followed it up by hopefully settling their erratic goalie situation in acquiring Jonathan Bernier.

7. NEW YORK ISLANDERS

2013: 24-17-7, 8th in East (55 points)

• New captain John Tavares put up an MVP-type season last year, and look for him again to lead this up-and-coming team.

8. WASHINGTON CAPITALS

2013: 27-18-3, 3rd in East (57 points)

• Alex Ovechkin got off to a slow start last season before pouring it on en route to his third Hart Trophy. No slow start this season.

9. MONTREAL CANADIENS

2013: 29-14-5, 2nd in East (63 points)

• Was a surprise out of the East last season, but last season’s Carey Price was nothing like the Carey Price of three years ago.

10. PHILADELPHIA Flyers

2013: 23-22-3, 10th in East (49 points)

• Ilya Bryzgalov and his idiosyncrasies were purged in the offseason, but the jury’s out as to whether Ray Emery and Steve Mason will solve Philly’s eternal goaltending issues.

11. COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS

2013: 24-17-7, 9th in West (55 points)

• Hard-working team that should score more with a full season of Marian Gaborik, but goalie Sergei Bobrovsky will be asked again to carry the load.

12. TAMPA BAY LIGHTNING

2013: 18-26-4, 14th in East (40 points)

• The Lightning has scorers Steven Stamkos and Martin St. Louis, but also has a terrible blue line.

13. FLORIDA PANTHERS

2013: 15-27-6, 15th in East (36 points)

• They’ve dug goalie Tim Thomas out of his sabbatical and are skilled with Jonathan Huberdeau, Nick Bjugstad and Shawn Matthias, but they’re still too young.

 

14. NEW JERSEY DEVILS

2013: 19-19-10, 11th in East (48 points)

• Ilya Kovalchuk up and retired, and this was a glacially slow team to begin with. This could be a tough go for the Devils.

15. CAROLINA HURRICANES

2013: 19-25-4, 13th in East (42 points)

• They better hope goalie Cam Ward is completely healthy after a knee injury, because defensively, this team has big issues.

16. BUFFALO SABRES

2013: 21-21-6, 12th in East (48 points)

• The pending free agency and trade discussion of Thomas Vanek and Ryan Miller will be a distraction all season.

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NY Mets 8 FINAL
Atlanta 2
Philadelphia 3 FINAL
NY Yankees 1
Detroit 5 FINAL
Baltimore 4
Toronto 4 FINAL
Pittsburgh 1
Cincinnati 2 FINAL
Cleveland 4
San Diego 3 FINAL
Seattle 4
Chicago WSox 6 FINAL
Los Angeles 4
Kansas City 13 FINAL
Texas 2
Oakland 9 FINAL
San Francisco 2
Wisc-Milwaukee 0 FINAL
Milwaukee 8
Arizona 6 FINAL
Colorado 3
Univ of Minnesota 1 FINAL
Minnesota 3
New York 82 FINAL
Indiana 105
Phoenix 105 FINAL
Orlando 100
Cleveland 120 FINAL
Toronto 112
Utah 84 FINAL
Boston 85
Charlotte 115 FINAL
Brooklyn 91
Denver 100 FINAL
Minnesota 85
Detroit 85 FINAL
New Orleans 88
LA Lakers 94 FINAL
Miami 100
Philadelphia 118 FINAL
Oklahoma City 123
Memphis 102 FINAL
Houston 100
Sacramento 85 FINAL
San Antonio 112
Milwaukee 65 3rd Qtr 4:29
Golden State 62
Portland 55 3rd Qtr 4:04
LA Clippers 63
Ottawa 3 FINAL
Winnipeg 1
NY Rangers 1 FINAL(OT)
Detroit 2
Pittsburgh 0 3rd Prd 12:21
Colorado 2
Montreal 0 3rd Prd 18:31
Anaheim 2
Longwood 65 FINAL
Presbyterian 61
Campbell 64 FINAL
Gardner-Webb 72
Liberty 70 FINAL
UNC-Asheville 80
Ohio State 77 FINAL
Penn State 67
Maine 66 FINAL
Albany 83
Duquesne 81 FINAL
Fordham 66
George Washington 67 FINAL
George Mason 51
Tennessee 78 FINAL
LSU 63
Notre Dame 71 FINAL
Louisville 59
SE Missouri St 74 FINAL
Morehead State 79
St Francis-PA 73 FINAL
Mount St Marys 58
Hartford 63 FINAL
New Hampshire 67
Wagner 68 FINAL
Robert Morris 91
Long Island 70 FINAL
St Francis-NY 79
La Salle 50 FINAL
Saint Josephs 55
Providence 79 FINAL
Seton Hall 66
UCF 45 FINAL
South Florida 74
Binghamton 57 FINAL
Stony Brook 62
UMBC 39 FINAL
Vermont 66
Sacred Heart 85 FINAL
Bryant 91
Richmond 56 FINAL
Massachusetts 53
Wake Forest 51 FINAL
Duke 94
Purdue 66 FINAL
Michigan State 72
Miami-Florida 67 FINAL
Pittsburgh 63
St Bonaventure 64 FINAL
Saint Louis 48
New Mexico St 69 FINAL
TX-Pan American 48
Houston 68 FINAL
Tulane 63
Howard 62 FINAL
NJIT 71
TCU 70 FINAL
Oklahoma State 82
Cincinnati 56 FINAL
Tulsa 47
USC 74 FINAL
UCLA 85
Miss State 56 FINAL
Vanderbilt 66
Utah State 53 FINAL
Wyoming 76
St Johns 67 FINAL
Marquette 51
SIU Edwardsville 66 FINAL
Eastern Ill 78
Air Force 66 FINAL
Fresno State 68
Nebraska 57 2nd Half 0:05
Illinois 69
Colorado State 78 FINAL
Nevada 62
Boise State 68 FINAL
San Jose St 51
San Diego St 30 2nd Half 18:26
UNLV 32
Oregon 32 2nd Half
Oregon State 32
UC Santa Barbara 5 1st Half 18:00
Hawaii 5
Toledo 64 FINAL
Northern Ill 68
Wake Forest 69 FINAL
Boston College 53
Eastern Illinois 35 FINAL
UT Martin 68
Austin Peay 69 FINAL
SIU-Edwardsville 72
Virginia Tech 57 FINAL
NC State 56
Massachusetts 55 FINAL
St Bonaventure 49
Auburn 71 FINAL
Florida 49
Penn State 63 FINAL
Indiana 68
Clemson 53 FINAL
Georgia Tech 80
Davidson 63 FINAL
La Salle 74
Loyola-Maryland 46 FINAL
Lafayette 58
Boston U 48 FINAL
Colgate 58
Coll of Charleston 58 FINAL
James Madison 107
Delaware 76 FINAL
Elon 77
Drexel 58 FINAL
Northeastern 42
Hofstra 75 FINAL
UNC-Wilmington 76
Towson 56 FINAL
William & Mary 68
Miami-Ohio 55 FINAL
Akron 67
Ball State 85 FINAL
Central Michigan 69
Buffalo 55 FINAL
Bowling Green 47
Western Mich 65 FINAL
Eastern Michigan 74
Ohio U 69 FINAL
Kent State 56
Youngstown St 62 FINAL
Cleveland State 73
Illinois-Chicago 54 FINAL
Wright State 74
Alabama 56 FINAL
Vanderbilt 66
Detroit 60 FINAL
Milwaukee 56
Purdue 58 FINAL
Wisconsin 56
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