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10 Totally Irresponsible 2012 NHL Playoff Predictions

Hey, you want facts, figures, and insight, move to Canada.

Full disclosure: At the time of this writing, the NHL playoff seeds aren’t even finalized, with nearly every team still jockeying for playoff position (except certain clubs in Columbus, Ohio and Edmonton, Alberta, who have been choking on other teams’ exhaust fumes since December). But if you think that will stop us from speculating all over the Great White North, you are mistaken. Strap in, because we’re going to make hockey history.


10. Don’t Tread On Him

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President Obama decides to take in the Boston Bruins’ first-round bout with the Ottawa Senators. This prompts Bruins goalie Tim Thomas to boycott the series and, faced with starting 36-year-old NHL castoff Marty Turco (who was in the commentator’s booth this time last season) the Bruins decide to raffle off the starting job to fans. Southie legend Dougie O’Bannon surrenders 87 goals. Does not like dem apples one bit.

9. Fashion Star

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Despite “officially” retiring during a visit to Bravo’s “Watch What Happens,” Vogue intern Sean Avery returns to the Rangers’ line-up for the start of the playoffs.  He immediately begins dating TV personality Olivia Munn, much to the chagrin of her former flame  - Rangers center Brad Richards. The locker room in-fighting not only sinks the Blueshirts, it forces the league to institute a ban on sloppy seconds, called “The Avery Rule.”

8. Smashville

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After watching Major League, Nashville Predators coach Barry Trotz creates a life-sized standee of Preds center Mike Fisher’s wife, Carrie Underwood, complete with peel-away panels. The plan inspires the team, which dominates all the way to the franchise’s first ever Stanley Cup. Upon seeing the Cup handed to a team in Tennessee, mass suicides overtake the cities of Toronto, Vancouver, and Calgary.

7.  Switcheroo

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Midway through their first round match with the Vancouver Canucks, the Phoenix Coyotes franchise will relocate to Seattle. The move will so confuse the Canucks, that they will blow a 3-0 series lead. The resulting riot in downtown Vancouver will be characterized for the intensity of the participants’ ennui.  Canucks goalie Roberto Luongo agrees to waive the remaining 9 years on his contract so he’ll never have to play a playoff game again.

6. The Battle of Pennsylvania

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One of the most intense rivalries in sports sparks up early in the 2012 playoffs, as the Philadelphia Flyers and the Pittsburgh Penguins square off. Unbeknownst to fans, the entire series has been scripted and is being filmed by Christopher Nolan for the super-secret fourth Batman movie. No one notices that the Flyers have had Gary Oldman in net since Game 2.

5. Not Bitter

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Martin Brodeur, the 40-year-old future Hall of Fame goalie who is the NHL’s all-time wins leader, all-time shut out leader, winner of three Stanley Cups, two Olympic gold medals, four Vezina trophies for league’s top goaltender, nine-time All-Star, and 1994 rookie of the year will lead the New Jersey Devils to a surprise Conference title. In celebration, the New York metropolitan area throws a ticker-tape parade for the Rangers’ Henrik Lundqvist, who had a perfect attendance record.

4. Chick-a-go

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The Chicago Blackhawks will be sent into a tailspin when more shirtless limousine pictures of Patrick Kane show up on the web. The resulting scandal sees Kane fined for violating team dress code, abusing the wingman code, egregiously engaging in beer goggling, and blatantly flouting the Avery Rule.

3. Nik of Time

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Midway through the second round, the Detroit Red Wings will suffer a huge blow when 41-year-old team captain Nicklas Lidstrom is sidelined by an injury. The team is allowed to recall Chris Chelios, citing a loophole in the contract he originally signed with the team when it was founded in 1926. Chelios’ coffin sleep chamber is re-installed in the locker room.

2. Buffalone

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Despite an epic collapse midway through the season, the Buffalo Sabres’ late surge will put them into the playoff picture on the last day of the regular season. But due to all of the uniform changes they will undergo between now and then, they will mistakenly be given seeds 2 through 7. The #2 seeded Sabres will sweep the #6 seeded Sabres in a game no one realizes was on TV.

1. Sidding Bull

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Following an early first round ouster,  the Penguins’ Sidney Crosby will suffer a relapse of post-concussion syndrome and will quietly inform league commissioner Gary Bettman that he plans to retire.  In a panic, Bettman forces the Penguins’ Matt Cooke and Chris Kunitz to carry a barely conscious Crosby around the ice Weekend at Bernie’s style for at least six more seasons until they can figure out a way to get people excited about Steve Stamkos.