We are currently heading into Week 18 of the 2018-2019 season, and every day, we get a little bit closer to April 7th, the (suspected) day of the Challenge Round show and the official start to the 2019 SPHL playoffs. So to begin, I went ahead and made my predictions about which teams I think will make it to the postseason dance:
- Peoria Rivermen: Cmon, they have to be regular season champs again, hands down. Great squad, great coach, great team.
- Birmingham Bulls: One of the two surprise of the season, this Bulls team lives up to the name, physical beast who storm the ice and control it (unless they allow four goals in one period).
- Huntsville Havoc: The Champs are still rolling, with great rookies and great vets, never doubt this squad.
- Macon Mayhem: A team that got off to a great start, but have been very eh recently, still could get hot and come back.
- Fayetteville Marksmen: My other surprise of the season. Coach Kallechy has brought in a good team in his first season, while I doubt they win the cup, the next few years will be an interesting time for them.
- Roanoke Rail Yard Dawgs: Average squad to be honest. Can win games when they want to, but I feel like there’s confidence issues holding them back. Could be 3rd or 4th.
- Knoxville Ice Bears: I feel like they are the same as Roanoke, a good squad with confidence issues.
- Quad City Storm: I think QC could be the first team in at least 3 years to finally break the expansion team curse. Gritty and tough, they may not win a lot of games, but enough to sneak in.
Ok, now to state where I think the actual show is going to take place, I think the Havoc get to hold it again, as they still lead the attendance standings, and won the cup last year, so it’s little bit of a reward for them.
With the first pick, the Rivermen take on the Storm. Second pick, Bulls take on Knoxville. Third pick, Havoc take on Fayetteville, and finally Macon gets Roanoke.
Playoff time: In the opening round I think Rivermen win in two games. Bulls win in three games. Havoc win in two games. Macon wins in two. Second round: Mayhem win in three games, Havoc win in three also. Finals: Havoc defeat the Mayhem in three games, winning their third cup.
Now, there’s still a lot of regular season hockey to be played, but this is how I see things shaking out the rest of the way, and I’m sure they’ll all be right.
So what do you think about my playoff predictions? Go ahead and yell at me in the comment and tell me how early it is and how I’m wrong.