Think I'll make my predictions now while the thread is still fresh.
Leafs-Caps: Leafs in 7. In a series between two of the finest choke artists the East has to offer, one side chokes in epic amazing ways but the other consistently chokes before they even come close to fulfilling expectations. This is less thinking the Leafs will pull it off and more the Caps will blow it.
Pens-Blue Jackets: Pens in 6. I don't see the Blue Jackets winning this unless they get red hot like they did during their 16 game winning streak. Series will be relatively close regardless.
Habs-Rangers: Habs in 6. Provided Price doesn't go down this is should be in favour of the Habs.
Sens-Burins: Sens in 7. This one will be close but I think it will be Ottawa that emerges triumphant.
Hawks-Preds: Hawks in 6: It's the Hawks.
Blues-Wild: Blues in 7. It is the most boring matchup in the first round which is partly why I think we'll get 7 games of this.
Oilers-Sharks: Oilers in 6. Sharks have more than a few players hurt going into the season while the Oilers are (Surprisingly) heathy. Oilers are also the better team on paper and (for now) don't have a history of choking.
Flames-Ducks: Flames in 7. This will probably be the most intense matchup in the first round and ultimately I think the Flames will take it.
Caps in 6 - It's not time for the Caps to choke until round 2. This is a lesson for the future for the Leafs. BJs in 7 - I'm not convinced that Malkin is going to be 100%, not to mention several other key players, and that Pitt defense can be dire at times with their injuries. If the Pens are healthier than they seem, this could be a short series in their favor, though. Maybe the most even match up on paper. Habs in 5 - If Carey Price stays healthy and the hex that Bell Centre seems to hold over the Rangers stays intact, this is an easy win for Montreal. Strong chance the Rangers are exposed much like last season. Bruins in 6 - The Sens have had the Bruins' number all season. Time for that karma to change.
Hawks in 6 - Playoff time in Chicago again. Don't need much more reason than that for round 1. Blues in 7 - ALL IN. LIKE MINNESOTA. BUT NOT MINNESOTA. Ducks in 4 - Feels like we need a sweep in here somewhere. Oilers in 6 - Sharks seem ripe for the picking by a fast young team. Opportunity for McDavid to start writing a legend.