Its that time of the year again where Canada pretty much shuts down and watches hockey every night. I cant comment on American interest in Hockey, but I imagine its as big as it is here in key cities (Detroit, Boston, Tampa Bay)... Anyone have any first round predictions? As always the Eastern Conference is strong, but considering the production of the west I wouldnt be too surpised to see the cup come out here. EASTERN CONFERENCE (1) LIGHTNING vs ISLANDERS (8) - I can see the Islanders putting up a fight (won the season series), but lets not kid ourselves... Lightning in 5 games. (2) BRUINS vs CANADIENS (7) - A classic match, but with Thorton looking pretty hurt the Canadians will win in 7. (3) FLYERS vs DEVILS (6) - Im not sure that Brodeur can carry them without Stevens helping him.. Flyers in 6. (4) MAPLE LEAFS vs SENATORS (5) - For the 4th time in 5 years we have this matchup... Toronto Always Wins. (5 Games) WESTERN CONFERENCE (1) RED WINGS vs PREDATORS (8) - It'll be a slaughter, but the Preds could beat them up bad enough to hurt them in round 2. Wings in 4 games. (2) SHARKS vs BLUES (7) - Blues have the experience and an edge. Blues in 6 games. (3) CANUCKS vs FLAMES (6) - This will be a war, but the nucks are looking good without Bertuzzi and using Cook on the front line. An epic matchup with Canucks in 7, just for nostagia. (4) AVALANCHE vs DALLAS (5) - The Avs are in a slide, and I think that Dallas can shut them down after losing the division. Dallas in 5. Put in your predicitons before Wednesday so they're valid.