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04-13-2012, 02:02 AM
akacesfan's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Anchorage, AK
Country: United States
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GDT: ECHL Conference Semifinals

Alright, quick previews for each series. Yes, I realize that it

#1 Alaska Aces vs. #5 Stockton Thunder

The Thunder came off of a sweep of the Colorado Eagles, while the Aces have remained idle. The Aces were perfect against the Thunder in Alaska with a 3-0 record, but were not so hot down in Stockton with a 2-4-1 record. Kevin Baker (27G, 29A) is Stockton's top scorer, while Dan Kissel (35G, 33A) is Alaska's top scorer. Both teams have solid defense and goaltending, and offense can be bipolar at times for both teams. However, Alaska has more talent and that will win them the series.

Prediction - Alaska in 6

#3 Las Vegas Wranglers vs. #7 Idaho Steelheads

The Wranglers come off of a sweep of the Utah Grizzlies, while the Steelheads are coming off of a five game upset of the Pacific Division champions in the Ontario Reign. The Steelheads have an outstanding goaltender in Jerry Kuhn, but Joe Fallon is just as talented for Las Vegas. The Wranglers have much more firepower with options such as Adam Miller, Greg Paukovich, and Eric Lampe. The Steelies have a few deadly players such as Jacob Cepis and Derek LeBlanc. Kuhn will frustrate the Wranglers to no end, but the Wranglers will find a way to win.

Prediction - Las Vegas in 7

#1 Elmira Jackals vs. #5 Florida Everblades

This one will be an interesting series for sure. Elmira stormed back from a 2-0 deficit to win their series against the Reading Royals, while the Everblades outplayed Greenville and swept them. The Jackals post the league's top scorer in Dustin Gazley (25G, 60A), however, Florida has a strong goaltender in John Muse (2.42 GAA, .920 save %), and they have been red hot lately. Whoever wins this series likely wins the Eastern Conference.

Prediction - Florida in 7

#3 Kalamazoo Wings vs. #7 South Carolina Stingrays

Two teams I love to hate here. South Carolina survived multiple marathon games in an upset of the Gwinnett Gladiators, while Kalamazoo bested the Wheeling Nailers. The Stingrays are a balanced team that can win in both offensively and defensively, while the K-Wings rely on a high powered offensive attack to win games. Phillip Grubauer is one of the top goalies in the league (2.22 GAA, .918 save %), but scorers for Kalamazoo such as Trent Daavettila (18G, 56A), Kory Karlander (18G, 37A), and Darryl Bootland (25G, 28A). Despite the fact that South Carolina is a strong, balanced team, Kalamazoo will outgun them and find a quick path to the conference finals.

Prediction - Kalamazoo in 5

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