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Friday, 29 April 2016

The Big Leaderboard

Having run the HBIC Playoff Pool for a number of years, I have dropped tidbits of information that I would consider to be vital in being successful in the contest. As you know, there are more series in the opening round of the NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs than there are in the final three rounds. One entrant in the 2016 edition of the Playoff Pool took full advantage of this fact and absolutely crushed it. His opening round score is, officially, a record for the HBIC Playoff Pool, and it may be enough to allow him to cruise to victory. That being said, I haven't given up on anyone catching him as there are still seven series to be played! The prognostications of this entrant, however, are nothing short of impressive at this point!

You'll want to refer back to this page for the point totals as we move through the playoffs. This is where all future point updates will happen. I have listed the names below in alphabetical order as per your submitted first name, so scroll through and find your name and point total.

Because of the scheduling quirk for the second round, if you want to gamble some points in the "Risk It!" option at this time, send me an email indicating that. Again, you must call the series perfectly to get the gambled points doubled. If you're wrong, you won't lose points, but you also won't receive any points for that series. In other words, don't gamble on EVERY series unless you absolutely have to do so!

Without further adieu, here is the HBIC Playoff Pool Leaderboard!

HBIC PLAYOFF POOL LEADERBOARD
Name Tie-Breaker Points Rank
Adam K.
St. Louis
30 n/a
Andy S.
Anaheim
24 n/a
Cole V.
Anaheim
36 n/a
Corey D.
Anaheim
22 n/a
Dan F.
Dallas
31 n/a
Daniel W.
Pittsburgh
61 1st
Dave F.
Washington
33 n/a
Dylan M.
Anaheim
26 n/a
Forrest B.
Los Angeles
25 n/a
Jackson N.
Dallas
28 n/a
Jared R.
Anaheim
24 n/a
John M.
Chicago
30 n/a
LJ S.
Dallas
45 4th
Mark S.
Los Angeles
29 n/a
Marty L.
Washington
38 7th
Matt H.
Washington
46 3rd
Michael J.
Washington
19 n/a
Michael M.
Washington
20 n/a
Michael P.
Anaheim
39 6th
Neal L.
no team
23 n/a
Peter S.
Los Angeles
25 n/a
Ryan H.
Dallas
24 n/a
Ryan P.
NY Rangers
39 5th
Scott M.
Anaheim
33 n/a
Steve M.
St. Louis
31 n/a
Ted A.
no team
47 2nd
Tony T.
Washington
21 n/a
Westin F.
Anaheim
38 8th
Zeke P.
Aneheim
36 n/a

Ok, so a few notes about the above leaderboard. Names in yellow are your leaders, and their rankings as to where they stand are to the right of their names and point totals. Those are the people you're hunting down in this quest for some free gear. As you can see, some are closer than others, but no one is truly out of this contest until the Stanley Cup has been awarded. If you want to risk a few points on a series or two, that's at your discretion, but it could get you back into the race very quickly.

Secondly, due to the number of entrants, I will be awarding eight prizes to this year's contestants. As you may be aware, there are a number of people who drop out over the course of the playoffs, so your odds will likely get better as the playoffs go on AS LONG AS YOU CONTINUE TO PLAY. As you can see above, eight names are in yellow and their rankings are there for the taking to those who can predict the next seven series correctly!

Finally, for Neal and Ted who submitted no tie-breaker teams, please send me an email with the team you'd like to choose. If these are not received by Monday, you'll be forced to go in without a team to help gain an upper-hand on the competition.

Good luck, everyone, and congratulations to our leaders!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Thursday, 28 April 2016

The Hockey Show - Episode 188

The Hockey Show, Canada's only campus-produced hockey radio show, is back tonight with a guest who I looked up to for a long time. It seems we have some awesome local deejays here in Manitoba as we've already had Brody Jackson and Samantha Stevens on from QX104FM to talk about their hockey tie-ins (Brody is the in-game host for the Jets while Samantha was learning hockey at a local Canlan hockey class!). Today, we have the man who is in charge of the Winnipeg chapter of Canada's largest street hockey tournament in the Play On! 4-on-4 street hockey tournament who was also part of one of Manitoba's best radio morning shows in recent history!

Tonight, we meet Mr. Tom McGouran who is getting the Winnipeg portion of Play On! onto the streets at the University of Manitoba! Tom has been on-and-off radio across Canada for a few decades now, but he was part of 92CITI-FM's fantastic morning show in the 1990s with co-cohort Joe Aiello! Tom and Joe were the originators of some of Winnipeg's best radio, and they were my choice for morning radio when I was getting ready for school and university in the morning! We'll talk with Tom about his involvement with Play On!, his radio career, who his picks are for Round Two in the NHL, and the Brandon Wheat Kings as Tom's a huge hockey fan!

Play On! is the ultimate summer street hockey experience, and you should be a part of it! It doesn't matter what your skill level or age is because Play On! offers recreational and competitive street hockey tournament divisions for every weekend warrior! The Play On! event will tour across Canada this summer, so make sure you get registered for some exciting and fun street hockey action in your city! All details as to when Play On! will be in your city and what the costs are for your skill and age level can be found on the Play On! website! See you out there!

The phones are closed tonight with Tom joining us in-studio! To hear this great interview, make sure you tune your radio dial in the Winnipeg region to 101.5 on your FM dial or listen live between 5:30pm and 6:30pm CT on your web-enabled device at the UMFM webpage! Tweet me anytime with questions you may have by hitting me up at @TeebzHBIC on Twitter. You can also post some stuff to Facebook if you use the "Like" feature, and I always have crazy stuff posted there that doesn't make it to the blog or show. We might also try to get some Facebook Live footage of Tom in-studio up there as well! We talk to Play On! Winnipeg organizer and Winnipeg radio legend Tom McGouran tonight on The Hockey Show only on 101.5 UMFM!

PODCAST: April 28, 2016: Episode 188

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Round Two Starts Now

Well, I guess that title isn't entirely true. The second round actually started earlier tonight, but you may have caught yesterday's post that said that everyone would get the free three points because the NHL scheduled the second round to start before the first round had ended. Yeah, it's dumb, but this is the NHL and their magical scheduling. So while the second round has officially started, the HBIC Playoff Pool moves into Round Two officially right NOW!

To get you going, I have created another pretty little Excel document that can be opened in both Microsoft Excel and OpenOffice Calc. Fill this out and send it back to me WITH YOUR NAME AS THE NAME OF THE EXCEL DOCUMENT just like you did in the first round, but note that it is a Round 2 spreadsheet (ie. TeebzR2.xlsx). Send all picks to the pool email address: hbicplayoffpool-at-gmail-dot-com. Easy, right?

I will say this about the Nashville Predators: they got a helluva performance out of Pekka Rinne tonight. I'm not sure how they're feeling after a game in which they appeared to be running on fumes, but they'll have to get themselves ready for another West Coast team that looked pretty solid in the San Jose Sharks.

The will be the third time that the Predators have played in the second round, ousting Anaheim in 2010-11 and Detroit in 2011-12. The Predators have never been further than the second round, though, as Vancouver knocked them out in 2011 and Phoenix killed Nashville's season in 2012. It will be another tough test for the Predators in this series against San Jose, but they played very well against Anaheim to close out this series after being down 3-2 in the series.

For the Ducks, this is the fourth-straight season where they have been up 3-2 in a series only to lose the series on home ice in Game Seven. That's a record, folks, and not one that Ducks fans or the team should celebrate. As much as saying this sounds crazy, Bruce Boudreau's job will come under scrutiny once again as he's lost his sixth Game Seven in his coaching career as well. Despite all the regular season success Boudreau has led the Ducks to, it will ultimately be up to management and the owners to decide if Boudreau comes back for another season.

We'll see how this Predators win affects brackets as well.

With the Lightning-Islanders series already underway, I was impressed to find every single HBIC Playoff Pool entrant calling the Islanders with a John Tavares game-winning goal! Well done, all! Get your second round entries in before the start of the games tomorrow evening, and everything will be alright. If, for some reason, you can't get that done, EMAIL ME ASAP.

May the odds be ever in your favour!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Tuesday, 26 April 2016

Scheduling Problems

For the first time in a long time, the NHL has decided to start a round before the prior round has finished. This, of course, throws some issues into the HBIC Playoff Pool, but fear not, worthy competitors! I believe I have a solution to this that will work out well for everyone thanks to the Nashville-Anaheim game being the late game tomorrow night! If you don't like this solution, I can't please anyone, but what can I do? I'm not scheduling stuff for the NHL. Otherwise, I'd have the rounds separated by a day or two! Just go back to scribbling in your colouring book, NHL. Ok? Ok.

To resolve this scheduling conflict, every competitor in the HBIC Playoff Pool will receive the full three points for the Lightning-Islanders Game One game! That's right - everyone gets the correct game and the correct game-winning goal scorer points on this night thanks to the NHL messing everything up with their scheduling quirk.

Tomorrow, I will post the new spreadsheet, and you'll have until the start of the games on Thursday night to submit your new bracket predictions. It will be posted late thanks to the west coast Game Seven game between the Ducks and Predators, but the post will go up as soon as there is a definite winner in the series. In other words, if it's close into the third period, it won't be posted yet!

The leaderboard will be posted on Friday thanks to Thursday being the preview day for The Hockey Show. This weekend, I'll be posting the prizes for those participating, and I'll also add that there are still prizes trickling in to HBIC Headquarters. That means you can win what's in the pictures as well as getting some additional stuff not yet shown! WOOT WOOT to free gear!

Tune in tomorrow, kids, and we'll get that new bracket up ASAP. Who are you taking in Game Seven - Anaheim or Nashville? Sound off in the comments!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

Sunday, 24 April 2016

That Didn't Go So Well

The U18 World Championship took place in Grand Forks, North Dakota over the last week and a bit as each nation's best young players showed up to show off their talents and try to bring home some hardware. Overall, it was an excellent tournament on the ice and in the stands, and I have to commend the people of North Dakota for their excellent work in volunteering at the tournament. All reports had the tournament running smoothly and everyone was happy. After losing to the Swedes in a shootout in the semi-final, the Canadians were set to take on the Americans who lost to the Finns in their respective semi-final - ok, so not everyone was happy. In any case, the two North American nations were going to face-off for the bronze medal in what was expected to be a very entertaining game.

Except that didn't happen. I won't do a lot of explaining, but let's just say that the Americans came to play in a big way that I'm not sure Canada ever expected.
Yikes. I will say congratulations to the American squad who laid an ass-whipping on the Canadians like no one expected. They took home the bronze medal after their setback the day earlier. The Finns, to their credit, went on to defeat the Swedes in the final where Jesse Puljujärvi had a whale of a game in helping Finland capture the gold medal.

Congratulations to the gold medalists in Finland, the silver medalists in Sweden, and the bronze medalists in USA on successful tournaments! For Canada, they'll return home where they'll lick their wounds after that severe beating they took, and it will be a chance for some of the young men of this country to prepare for the NHL Entry Draft!

Until then, let's hope that 10-3 beatdown doesn't haunt their dreams!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!