Skip to main content
Expert Picks

NHL.com, NHL Network playoff forecast

21 experts weigh in with Stanley Cup predictions

NHL.com @NHLdotcom

The experts from NHL.com and NHL Network have made their Stanley Cup Playoff picks, and the winner will be the Washington Capitals. Or the Anaheim Ducks. Or the Los Angeles Kings.

A total of 21 analysts, writers and editors made their predictions, and seven, including NHL Network analysts Scott Stevens, Mike Rupp and Dave Reid, picked Washington to win the Stanley Cup for the first time. The Ducks and Kings each had five experts pick them to win it all.

NHL.com columnist Dave Stubbs was the only one to pick the Chicago Blackhawks to repeat.

The playoffs begin Wednesday with three games. Here are our picks:

 
Kevin Weekes, NHL Network Analyst

Round 1: Eastern Conference

WAS vs. PHI: Washington Capitals

FLA vs. NYI: Florida Panthers

PIT vs. NYR: Pittsburgh Penguins

TBL vs. DET: Tampa Bay Lightning

 

Round 1: Western Conference

DAL vs MIN: Dallas Stars

ANA vs. NSH: Anaheim Ducks

STL vs. CHI: Chicago Blackhawks

LAK vs. SJS: Los Angeles Kings

 

Stanley Cup Final: Kings over Penguins

Conn Smythe Trophy: Anze Kopitar, Kings

 
 
Scott Stevens, NHL Network Analyst

Round 1: Eastern Conference

WAS vs. PHI: Washington Capitals

FLA vs. NYI: Florida Panthers 

PIT vs. NYR: Pittsburgh Penguins

TBL vs. DET: Tampa Bay Lightning

 

Round 1: Western Conference

DAL vs MIN: Dallas Stars

ANA vs. NSH: Anaheim Ducks

STL vs. CHI: St. Louis Blues

LAK vs. SJS: Los Angeles Kings

 

Stanley Cup Final: Capitals over Kings

Conn Smythe Trophy: Evgeny Kuznetsov, Capitals

 

 

Brian Boucher, NHL Network Analyst

Round 1: Eastern Conference

WAS vs. PHI: Washington Capitals

FLA vs. NYI: Florida Panthers 

PIT vs. NYR: Pittsburgh Penguins

TBL vs. DET: Detroit Red Wings

 

Round 1: Western Conference

DAL vs MIN: Dallas Stars

ANA vs. NSH: Anaheim Ducks

STL vs. CHI: Chicago Blackhawks

LAK vs. SJS: Los Angeles Kings

 

Stanley Cup Final: Kings over Penguins

Conn Smythe Trophy: Drew Doughty, Kings

 

 

Brian Lawton, NHL Network Analyst

Round 1: Eastern Conference

WAS vs. PHI: Washington Capitals

FLA vs. NYI: Florida Panthers 

PIT vs. NYR: New York Rangers

TBL vs. DET: Detroit Red Wings

 

Round 1: Western Conference

DAL vs MIN: Dallas Stars

ANA vs. NSH: Anaheim Ducks

STL vs. CHI: Chicago Blackhawks

LAK vs. SJS: San Jose Sharks

 

Stanley Cup Final: Ducks over Capitals

Conn Smythe Trophy: John Gibson, Ducks

 

 

Dave Reid, NHL Network Analyst

Round 1: Eastern Conference

WAS vs. PHI: Washington Capitals

FLA vs. NYI: Florida Panthers 

PIT vs. NYR: New York Rangers

TBL vs. DET: Tampa Bay Lightning

 

Round 1: Western Conference

DAL vs MIN: Dallas Stars

ANA vs. NSH: Anaheim Ducks

STL vs. CHI: Chicago Blackhawks

LAK vs. SJS: Los Angeles Kings

 

Stanley Cup Final: Capitals over Kings

Conn Smythe Trophy: Braden Holtby, Capitals

 

 

Mike Rupp, NHL Network Analyst

Round 1: Eastern Conference

WAS vs. PHI: Washington Capitals

FLA vs. NYI: Florida Panthers 

PIT vs. NYR: Pittsburgh Penguins

TBL vs. DET: Detroit Red Wings

 

Round 1: Western Conference

DAL vs MIN: Dallas Stars

ANA vs. NSH: Anaheim Ducks

STL vs. CHI: St. Louis Blues

LAK vs. SJS: Los Angeles Kings

 

Stanley Cup Final: Capitals over Kings

Conn Smythe Trophy: Braden Holtby, Capitals

 

 

Dan Rosen, NHL.com Senior Writer

Round 1: Eastern Conference

WAS vs. PHI: Washington Capitals

FLA vs. NYI: Florida Panthers 

PIT vs. NYR: Pittsburgh Penguins

TBL vs. DET: Tampa Bay Lightning

 

Round 1: Western Conference

DAL vs MIN: Dallas Stars

ANA vs. NSH: Nashville Predators

STL vs. CHI: Chicago Blackhawks

LAK vs. SJS: Los Angeles Kings

 

Stanley Cup Final: Kings over Capitals

Conn Smythe Trophy: Drew Doughty, Kings 

Video: NHL.com First Round Preview: Penguins vs Rangers

 

 
Bill Price, NHL.com Editor in Chief

Round 1: Eastern Conference

WAS vs. PHI: Washington Capitals

FLA vs. NYI: Florida Panthers 

PIT vs. NYR: Pittsburgh Penguins

TBL vs. DET: Tampa Bay Lightning

 

Round 1: Western Conference

DAL vs MIN: Dallas Stars

ANA vs. NSH: Nashville Predators

STL vs. CHI: Chicago Blackhawks

LAK vs. SJS: Los Angeles Kings

 

Stanley Cup Final: Stars over Penguins

Conn Smythe Trophy: Patrick Sharp, Stars

 

 

Shawn Roarke, NHL.com Director - Editorial

Round 1: Eastern Conference

WAS vs. PHI: Washington Capitals

FLA vs. NYI: New York Islanders

PIT vs. NYR: Pittsburgh Penguins

TBL vs. DET: Tampa Bay Lightning

 

Round 1: Western Conference

DAL vs MIN: Dallas Stars

ANA vs. NSH: Anaheim Ducks

STL vs. CHI: St. Louis Blues

LAK vs. SJS: Los Angeles Kings

 

Stanley Cup Final: Kings over Capitals

Conn Smythe Trophy: Jonathan Quick, Kings

 

 

Nick Cotsonika, NHL.com Insider

Round 1: Eastern Conference

WAS vs. PHI: Washington Capitals

FLA vs. NYI: Florida Panthers 

PIT vs. NYR: Pittsburgh Penguins

TBL vs. DET: Tampa Bay Lightning

 

Round 1: Western Conference

DAL vs MIN: Dallas Stars

ANA vs. NSH: Anaheim Ducks

STL vs. CHI: St. Louis Blues

LAK vs. SJS: Los Angeles Kings

 

Stanley Cup Final: Ducks over Penguins

Conn Smythe Trophy: Corey Perry, Ducks

Video: Cotsonika previews the Red Wings vs Lightning series

 

 

Amalie Benjamin, NHL.com Regional Writer

Round 1: Eastern Conference

WAS vs. PHI: Washington Capitals

FLA vs. NYI: Florida Panthers 

PIT vs. NYR: Pittsburgh Penguins

TBL vs. DET: Tampa Bay Lightning

 

Round 1: Western Conference

DAL vs MIN: Dallas Stars

ANA vs. NSH: Anaheim Ducks

STL vs. CHI: Chicago Blackhawks

LAK vs. SJS: Los Angeles Kings

 

Stanley Cup Final: Ducks over Capitals

Conn Smythe Trophy: Ryan Gelzlaf, Ducks

 

 

Tom Gulitti, NHL.com Regional Writer

Round 1: Eastern Conference

WAS vs. PHI: Washington Capitals

FLA vs. NYI: Florida Panthers 

PIT vs. NYR: New York Rangers

TBL vs. DET: Tampa Bay Lightning

 

Round 1: Western Conference

DAL vs MIN: Dallas Stars

ANA vs. NSH: Anaheim Ducks

STL vs. CHI: Chicago Blackhawks

LAK vs. SJS: Los Angeles Kings

 

Stanley Cup Final: Kings over Capitals

Conn Smythe Trophy: Drew Doughty, Kings

Video: Tom Gulitti Previews the Flyers vs. Capitals

 

 

Mike Morreale, NHL.com Staff Writer

Round 1: Eastern Conference

WAS vs. PHI: Washington Capitals

FLA vs. NYI: Florida Panthers 

PIT vs. NYR: Pittsburgh Penguins

TBL vs. DET: Tampa Bay Lightning

 

Round 1: Western Conference

DAL vs MIN: Dallas Stars

ANA vs. NSH: Nashville Predators

STL vs. CHI: St. Louis Blues

LAK vs. SJS: Los Angeles Kings

 

Stanley Cup Final: Capitals over Kings

Conn Smythe Trophy: Alex Ovechkin, Capitals

 

 

Brian Compton, NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

Round 1: Eastern Conference

WAS vs. PHI: Washington Capitals

FLA vs. NYI: New York Islanders

PIT vs. NYR: Pittsburgh Penguins

TBL vs. DET: Tampa Bay Lightning

 

Round 1: Western Conference

DAL vs MIN: Minnesota Wild

ANA vs. NSH: Anaheim Ducks

STL vs. CHI: Chicago Blackhawks

LAK vs. SJS: Los Angeles Kings

 

Stanley Cup Final: Ducks over Capitals

Conn Smythe Trophy: Corey Perry, Ducks

 

 

 

Adam Kimelman, NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

Round 1: Eastern Conference

WAS vs. PHI: Washington Capitals

FLA vs. NYI: Florida Panthers 

PIT vs. NYR: Pittsburgh Penguins

TBL vs. DET: Tampa Bay Lightning

 

Round 1: Western Conference

DAL vs MIN: Dallas Stars

ANA vs. NSH: Anaheim Ducks

STL vs. CHI: St. Louis Blues

LAK vs. SJS: Los Angeles Kings

 

Stanley Cup Final: Capitals over Blues

Conn Smythe Trophy: Nicklas Backstrom, Capitals

 

 

David Satriano, NHL.com Staff Writer

Round 1: Eastern Conference

WAS vs. PHI: Washington Capitals

FLA vs. NYI: New York Islanders 

PIT vs. NYR: Pittsburgh Penguins

TBL vs. DET: Tampa Bay Lightning

 

Round 1: Western Conference

DAL vs MIN: Dallas Stars

ANA vs. NSH: Anaheim Ducks

STL vs. CHI: St. Louis Blues

LAK vs. SJS: Los Angeles Kings

 

Stanley Cup Final: Lightning over Blues

Conn Smythe Trophy: Ben Bishop, Lightning

 

 

Pete Jensen, NHL.com Fantasy Insider

Round 1: Eastern Conference

WAS vs. PHI: Washington Capitals

FLA vs. NYI: New York Islanders 

PIT vs. NYR: Pittsburgh Penguins

TBL vs. DET: Detroit Red Wings

 

Round 1: Western Conference

DAL vs MIN: Dallas Stars

ANA vs. NSH: Anaheim Ducks

STL vs. CHI: Chicago Blackhawks

LAK vs. SJS: San Jose Sharks

 

Stanley Cup Final: Capitals over Sharks

Conn Smythe Trophy: Alex Ovechkin, Capitals

 

 

Dave Stubbs, NHL.com Columnist

Round 1: Eastern Conference

WAS vs. PHI: Washington Capitals

FLA vs. NYI: Florida Panthers 

PIT vs. NYR: Pittsburgh Penguins

TBL vs. DET: Tampa Bay Lightning

 

Round 1: Western Conference

DAL vs MIN: Dallas Stars

ANA vs. NSH: Anaheim Ducks

STL vs. CHI: Chicago Blackhawks

LAK vs. SJS: Los Angeles Kings

 

Stanley Cup Final: Blackhawks over Capitals

Conn Smythe Trophy: Patrick Kane, Blackhawks

 

 

Arpon Basu, LNH.com Senior Managing Editor

Round 1: Eastern Conference

WAS vs. PHI: Philadelphia Flyers

FLA vs. NYI: Florida Panthers 

PIT vs. NYR: Pittsburgh Penguins

TBL vs. DET: Tampa Bay Lightning

 

Round 1: Western Conference

DAL vs MIN: Dallas Stars

ANA vs. NSH: Anaheim Ducks

STL vs. CHI: St. Louis Blues

LAK vs. SJS: Los Angeles Kings

 

Stanley Cup Final: Ducks over Penguins

Conn Smythe Trophy: Corey Perry, Ducks

 

 

Robert Laflamme, LNH.com Senior Writer

Round 1: Eastern Conference

WAS vs. PHI: Washington Capitals

FLA vs. NYI: Florida Panthers 

PIT vs. NYR: Pittsburgh Penguins

TBL vs. DET: Tampa Bay Lightning

 

Round 1: Western Conference

DAL vs MIN: Dallas Stars

ANA vs. NSH: Anaheim Ducks

STL vs. CHI: St. Louis Blues

LAK vs. SJS: San Jose Sharks

 

Stanley Cup Final: Penguins over Ducks

Conn Smythe Trophy: Kris Letang, Penguins

 

 

Matt Cubeta, NHL.com Director - International

Round 1: Eastern Conference

WAS vs. PHI: Washington Capitals

FLA vs. NYI: Florida Panthers 

PIT vs. NYR: New York Rangers

TBL vs. DET: Tampa Bay Lightning

 

Round 1: Western Conference

DAL vs MIN: Dallas Stars

ANA vs. NSH: Anaheim Ducks

STL vs. CHI: St. Louis Blues

LAK vs. SJS: San Jose Sharks

 

Stanley Cup Final: Capitals over Ducks

Conn Smythe Trophy: Nicklas Backstrom, Capitals

View More

The NHL uses cookies, web beacons, and other similar technologies. By using NHL websites or other online services, you consent to the practices described in our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service, including our Cookie Policy.