NHL To Allow Finishing Moves In Fights This Season
NEW YORK—In a policy shift that seems to run counter to the recent emphasis on professional hockey as a game of speed and finesse, the NHL announced Wednesday that it will allow exceptionally graphic finishing moves for the 2010-2011 season. "At any point during an on-ice altercation, if one participant in a fight becomes dizzy or dazed, the arena announcer shall exclaim 'Finish him!'; whereupon the victor shall be given the choice of turning into a dragon and biting off his opponent's torso, ripping the other skater in half with a razor-sharp hat, or removing his hockey mask to reveal a fire-breathing skeletal face before burning his opponent to a crisp," the statement from the NHL Competition Committee read in part. "A two-minute minor penalty will be added to the five-minute fighting major if one combatant turns the other into an infant or offers him a wrapped present." The drastic rule change is believed to be prompted by an on-ice altercation last season after which the Oilers' Zack Stortini held up the skull and spine of the Rangers' Donald Brashear, receiving a three-minute standing ovation.
Okay, this is from The Onion. But just imagine, wouldn't this be great?
Anyway, onto actual predictions.
2. New Jersey
7. Tampa Bay
8. Toronto (yep, I'll keep dreaming)
1. San Jose
5. Los Angeles
*Sharks over Flames because it's the first round
*Canucks over Ducks in the rhymiest possible NHL series
*Blackhawks over Avalanche when the experienced youngsters beat the young youngsters
*Red Wings over Kings in the second-rhymiest possible series
*Capitals over Maple Leafs as I'm satisfied with his briefest taste of playoff hockey after so many, many years
*Devils over Lightning since let's be honest, I'm stretching just having the Bolts here
*Bruins over Flyers because of revenge
*Penguins over Sabres because Ryan Miller is not Superman
*Red Wings over Sharks because it's the second round
*Canucks over Blackhawks when the Sedins use the old Killer Bees' mask-switching routine to fool Jonathan Toews
*Penguins over Capitals as Alex Ovechkin's personal hell continues
*Devils over Bruins but then the NHL voids the result, but then they allow it at the penalty of making Martin Brodeur play with one eye closed in the next series.
*Canucks over Red Wings in the most exciting hockey-related moment in Vancouver since....well, you know
*Penguins over Devils since who wouldn't root for a cute little penguin over Satan?
Stanley Cup Finals: Penguins over Canucks. Eat it, city of Vancouver.