2021/2022 SICHL Playoffs

GM Fekete's predictions and breakdown of each 1st round series.
by Chris Fekete | May 3, 2022, 2:53 PM ET

1. Fredericton Express vs 8. Vancouver Vipers

Notable Injuries: Killorn 92%, Jokiharju 90%, Lindgren 70%. All for the Express. DeAngelo 76% and Rodrigues 43% for the Vipers.

 

During the regular season, the Express took 2 out of 3 from the Vipers, however, these 2 teams haven't played each other since day 76 so it is tough to gage how much these teams have changed since then. Still, with that being said, the Express are just way too deep for the Vipers to match up. The Vipers will be relying on their top line of Hall - Zacha - Guentzel to carry the team to the next round and hoping that their goaltending and defense can hold up against a Goliathian opponent. Even without Killorn for the first 2 games of the series (possibly 3, GTD that game), the Express still have guys like Stephenson, Pastrnak, Wheeler, Zuccarello, Dubois to name a few. I think in the end, that will be too much for the Vipers to overcome.

Prediction: Express in 5

 

2. Whitehorse Huskies vs. 7 Edmonton Supersonics

Notable Injuries: Tyler Bozak 37% for the Huskies. Ryan Miller 87% for the Supersonics

 

Head to head this season, the 2 teams split the 4 game set. Each team winning 1 game at home, 1 game on the road. As for playoff history, this is the 4th time they will be facing off. Most recently, back in 2019-2020, the Huskies swept the Supersonics 4-0. However, I don't see that happening this time around. This is a much better Supersonics team, however, this is a much different and stronger Huskies team as well. Looking up and down the Huskies lineup, they are a very deep team to compete against. The question mark is going to be if Gibson can hold the fort. If he can't, will Bernier/Booth be called upon then? How about Edmonton? Will their D be able to stop the likes of Stone, MacKinnon, Nylander and company? Although this is a 2 vs 7 series, this may be closer than most GM's anticipate. I know this may not be good for Don though, I don't think he wants this series to be a nail biter, he is already aging by the minute as he is reading this article lol ;)

Prediction: Huskies in 7

 

3. Nova Scotia Schooners vs 6. Banff Rockies

Notable Injuries: Rask 63% for the Schooners. Dach 93% for the Rockies.

 

If odds repeat itself from their history last season in the playoffs, the Schooners will come out victorious. Last year in the Conference Finals, the Schooners defeated the Rockies in 6 games. Unfortunately for one of these pristined GM's, one of these gentlemen will be eliminated from the first round. I can tell you right now, most want Eric to be a 1 and done. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, this isn't a prediction, this is a spoiler, the Schooners will advance to the 2nd round. This is one of the strongest clubs, not just in the Canadian Conference but in the entire SICHL. There's a reason why Eric isn't well liked by his fellow peers, it's because they are envious of his GM abilities (buying a team and spending all his money lol). Be as it may though, back to business, Ian will have a lot of guys rooting him on but in the end, Elvis will leave the building...

Prediction: Schooners in 6

 

4. Montreal Millionaires vs 5. Acadia Grizzly Bears

Notable Injuries: Trocheck 86%, Ekholm 51%, Bergeron 45% for the Millionaires.

 

The series hasn't even started yet and the Millionaires are already severely shorthanded. Missing his top 2 centers is a huge blow. I guess that means Eakin could be seeing 1C duties. Yikes! That puts more pressure on guys like Marner, Svechnikov, Reinhart etc to put the puck in the net. I wouldn't be surprised if the Millionaires are hemmed in their zone a bit due to lots of faceoff losses. As for the Grizzly Bears, the only question mark they have is can Jarry lead them past the 1st round? I think so. The injuries Montreal has is too hard for them to make up.

Prediction: Grizzly Bears in 5

 

 

 

1. Havana Revolution vs 8. Seattle Grunge

Notable Injuries: Barrie 89%, Tkachuk 75 for the Grunge.

 

With Brady Tkachuk out for the first round and Tyson Barrie likely missing the 1st round too, barring a quick recovery, the Grunge will have to find someone else to score goals for them. Tkachuk led the team with 28 goals. That is going to be tough to replace. Gallagher, Gaudreau, Wood, this is your time to shine. Barrie missing on defence hurts a bit but they still have Martinez, Reilly, Oesterle (very underrated). The downside is, when you look at Revolution's lineup, do they have any weaknesses? Hellebuyck? They have the 2 best players in that other league in McDavid and Draisaitl who are playing on separate lines. The Grunge D are going to have their hands full, thats for sure. Oettinger will need to be Godly for the Grunge to steal this series. I just don't see it happening though.

Prediction: Revolution in 5

 

2. St Louis Spartans vs 7. Portland Buckaroos

Notable Injuries: Cody Ceci 90%, Morgan Frost 76% for the Spartans. Dylan Larkin 92%, Seth Jones 88% for the Buckaroos.

 

The Buckaroos beat the Spartans 3 out of 4 times this season, however, with Larkin out the first 2 games (possibly 3) and Seth Jones out for the first round, thats going to be a tough task to overcome but you can't count out the Buckaroos. The Spartans have an amazing group of forwards and a solid goalie (this year anyways) in Marc-Andre Fleury, however, their D isn't as strong and they may have to outscore their opponents (4+ per game). I think this will be a very interesting series to say the least. I'm sure JD is thinking if I won my last 2 games, I'd be facing London or Chicago instead. But sometimes you have to think about the health of your roster over seedings late in the season. As for my prediction, my head says the Spartans but my heart says the Buckaroos in an upset. Oh, the agony..

Prediction: Buckaroos in 6

 

3. Reykjavik Riders vs 6. Kansas City Krunch

Notable Injuries: No one significant from either team.

 

The last time these 2 teams played in the postseason was 2017-2018 in which the Krunch won in 7 games in the Semi-Finals. Times have changed though. Both these teams are different from the last time they've met. In the reglar season this year, the Krunch won 2 of 3. Most recently day 100 with a 3-2 O/T victory. But let's not forget that Varlamov/Rinne were both injured in that game and Silovs was in goal. That won't be the case in the playoffs. Thats a big step up for the Riders. As for the Krunch, Matthews was injured and Shesterkin was a healthy scratch. He is by far (well, next season) going to be the best goalie rated. Agree to disagree, I don't care. That's my opinion. Both teams are good on paper, the Riders boast a deeper group of d-men though and have more scoring depth. But it comes down to goaltending...

Prediction: Riders in 6

 

4. Chicago Tigers vs 5. London Monarchs

Notable Injuries: Dustin Tokarski 93%, Alexander Wennberg 92% for Tigers. Ben Hutton 87% for Monarchs.

 

These 2 teams haven't faced each other since day 65. That is a long time ago. This is also the first time they're facing each other in the playoffs. How exciting!! This series is super tough to call. You can't go wrong with either one of these clubs and it sucks that one of them has to be eliminated in the first round. What to do, what to do. Sigh. Flip a coin?

Prediction: Tigers in 7

 

 

Hope you guys enjoy these predictions and best of luck to all 16 GM's!!!

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