Simulation engine favors the Chicago Blackhawks to hoist Lord Stanley's Cup
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At the start of the 2013 Stanley Cup Playoffs, the WhatIfSports.com NHL simulation engine liked the Pittsburgh Penguins to meet the Chicago Blackhawks in our Stanley Cup Final. However, the Boston Bruins took full advantage of the 7.4 percent chance the sim engine gave them of reaching the final by sweeping Sidney Crosby and company 4-0.
It's crazy to think that two members of hockey's Original Six have not met in the Stanley Cup Final since 1979. The Blackhawks and Bruins haven't played since the beginning of the 2011-12 season due to the strike-shortened schedule.
Remember, the NHL simulation engine uses the comprehensive statistical make-up, resume, DNA, etc. of the Blackhawks' and Bruins' regular season because of the larger sample size of data.
Looking back at the abridged campaigns of both squads, it's probably apropos to focus on the goaltending of each squad as they do boast two of the top netminders in all of hockey.
Boston's Tuukka Rask finished with a .929 save percentage compared to Chicago's Corey Crawford's .926. However, Crawford flipped the script with a 1.94 goals against average compared to Rask's 2.00. Still, it's worth noting that Rask saw 200 more pucks fired in his direction.
As for the other statistically noteworthy items to consider, the Blackhawks' possessed two of the top points leaders on offense with Patrick Kane fifth (55 points) and Jon Toews 13th (48 points). Toews also finished third in regular season +/- at +28 with teammates Marian Hossa (10th), Michal Rozsival (16th) and Brandon Saad (18th) all ranking inside the Top 20.
Although the Bruins did not finish with a single player in the top 40 in the league in scoring, they did possess some of the most efficient skaters in the NHL. Patrice Bergeron (+24), Brad Marchand (+23) and Tyler Seguin (+23) all finished inside the Top 10 in plus-minus. Dennis Seidenberg finished 14th in the league at +18.
So, we simulated the Blackhawks and Bruins head-to-head 1,001 times and the computers like Chicago to come away with the win 73.7 percent of the time or, in series terms, a 4-1 series win.
Remember you can simulate the 2013 Stanley Cup Final as many times as you want for FREE. Just click on the link below.
2013 Stanley Cup Finals
|Matchup||Win %||Avg. Goals||WIS Interactive|
|Boston Bruins||26.3||1.61||Simulate Stanley Cup|
|vs. Chicago Blackhawks||73.7||2.84||for FREE!|
Ryan Fowler is the Content Manager for WhatIfSports.com. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.