On the final day of the regular season, the Caps still weren't sure who they were going to draw in the first round. It could've been the Rangers, Bruins, or Devils. In the end, the Caps came in as the 7th seed and will end up taking on #2 seeded Boston.
Frankly, it doesn't really matter who we played. Each matchup would present its own pros and cons. The biggest concern with Boston is obviously going up against their stars in Chara who does a great job of nullifying Ovie and Tim Thomas who even at his age is still one of the better goaltenders in the league.
The good thing with the Chara and Ovie matchup is that the Caps no longer rely solely on Ovie to score. This season we have had to count on a number of players to provide goals so hopefully the Chara/Ovie matchup will have less of an impact.
The Bruins also do a very good job of crashing the net and getting traffic in front of the opposing goalie. With the Caps having to turn to 22 year old Braden Holtby in the net, this could present even more pressure on the youngster. Still, I like Holtby. He seems like a cool, confident kid ready for the challenge. You never know what you get with a kid like that. It could be disasterous or it could end up like a Jim Carey type deal where he really rises to the challenge. I think the Caps like the kid and will really rally around him.
None of the "experts" are predicting the Caps to win but then again none of the "experts" gave the Lightning any chance against us last season. In the end, it really doesn't matter what seed you are. It doesn't matter what happened in the regular season. All teams start the playoffs 0-0. Frankly, the Caps being a lower seed may actually work out for us as we don't carry the pressure of higher expectations that come with a higher seed. I like the way the Caps finished out the season as I thought we played some of our most consistent and strong hockey. The problem is that the same can be said about the Bruins. It's going to be a good matchup and it's going to be a lot of fun. I don't think any team looks forward to playing the Caps and I absolutely think we have a strong chance. Hockey playoffs are some of the most exciting sports out there. Can't wait to get this thing started.
UNLEASH THE FURY!!!