Gerard and I both set a new record for most correct series (12), but Gerard wins on the basis of games-off (26, also a record) and perfect series (5, not a record). I will console myself with my perfect 7-0 run through the Western Conference and the knowledge that, had I been around to participate, I would’ve won the lab prediction pool and the cash money it promised. Matt, though, should hold his head high, because any other year, 11-4 would’ve won or tied for the lead. It’s actually kind of surprising, really, how well everyone did; usually, there’s one person who winds up 8-7 or something like that. Were these playoffs more predictable than normal? Is parity dead? Or did we just get lucky this year? I’m kind of thinking the latter, to be honest. Remember, the Leafs were 90 seconds from eliminating the Bruins. The Red Wings had a 3-1 lead on the Blackhawks in the conference semis and squandered it. The previous round, the Wings themselves went down 3-2 to the Ducks before coming back to win in Game 7. Hell, the Bruins were about a minute away from forcing Game 7 against Chicago, and then who knows what happens? Some years, everything goes your way. Others, you can get six series perfectly and still lose because three of your four Game 7 picks in round one crap out. Thanks a lot, 2011 Sabres/Canadiens/Penguins.
So congrats to Gerard for his first victory, multiple records, bragging rights, etc. I will spoil the moment utterly like a sore loser by pointing out that, while I am now the only participant never to win, I’ve tied the winner on correct series three of the five years, and somehow lost my own tiebreakers every time. Clearly, I need to come up with some new tiebreakers, because what I’m doing now obviously isn’t working.