NHL Cover Vote, Round Two and predictions for the Stanley Cup Finals.

by: Sean Cahill -
More On: NHL 14
Fan voting in the first round of the cover vote for NHL 14 has been completed with no real surprises.  From here, the NHL will commence the second round by narrowing it down to a Top 16 bracket, with eight being selected from each conference in a battle of East vs. West.  Besides the cover vote, EA Sports has completed the simulation of the Stanley Cup Playoffs and predicts that the New York Rangers will defeat the Chicago Blackhawks in the finals for the right to hoist up Lord Stanley's most famous piece of silverware.  The NHL Playoffs begin tomorrow, with President's Trophy winner Chicago taking on the Minnesota Wild.
EA SPORTS Predicts New York Rangers as 2013 Stanley Cup® Champions; Unveils 32 Players Advancing in NHL 14 Cover Vote

New York Rangers to Beat Chicago Blackhawks in Six Games According to
EA SPORTS NHL® Playoffs Prediction*
April 29, 2013 – Electronic Arts™ announced today that according to the Official EA SPORTS NHL® Playoff Prediction, the New York Rangers® will beat the Chicago Blackhawks® in six games to become the 2013 Stanley Cup® Champions.* In addition, EA SPORTS, the National Hockey League (NHL®) and the National Hockey League Players’ Association (NHLPA®) announced the 32 players that will be advancing in the NHL®14 Cover Vote.**
2013 Stanley Cup Playoffs Predictions
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2013 Stanley Cup Playoffs Storylines:
·         The New York Rangers win their fifth Stanley Cup in franchise history and their first since the 1993-94 Season, defeating the Chicago Blackhawks in six games.
·         Rangers forward Brad Richards wins the Conn Smythe Trophy, the second of his career. Richards notched 24 points in the Playoffs to lead all players.
o    Richards becomes the sixth player in NHL history to win at least two Conn Smythe Trophies joining: Roy (3), Gretzky (2), Lemieux (2), Orr (2), Parent (2)
·         The Chicago Blackhawks looked unbeatable as they progressed through the rounds, winning each series in five games before falling to the Rangers in six games.
·         The Western Conference saw two upsets in the opening round with the Detroit Red Wings (7) beating the Anaheim Ducks (2), while the Los Angeles Kings (5) defeated the St. Louis Blues (4).
·         The Toronto Maple Leafs were eliminated in the first round of the simulation, although they did manage to take their Original Six™ rivals, the Boston Bruins, to seven games.
·         The Pittsburgh Penguins, who looked to be a strong favorite to win the Stanley Cup, fell to the Rangers in seven games in the Eastern Conference Semifinals.
For more information about the Official EA SPORTS NHL® Playoff Prediction, including expanded storylines, statistics and a full round-by-round breakdown, visit EASPORTS.com/NHL.
NHL® 14 Cover Vote Enters Round of 32
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The second round of the EA SPORTS NHL® 14 Cover Vote, which begins today and ends May 5, shifts to a 32-player leaderboard format where the top 16 vote-getters advance to a 16-player bracket. The winner of the cover vote campaign will be unveiled as the EA SPORTS NHL® 14 Cover Athlete during the 2013 Stanley Cup Final.
Fans can vote for their favorite player at NHL.com/covervote, or double their vote on Twitter during “Double Vote Thursdays” by using these player specific hashtags. Here is a list of the players advancing:
Eastern Conference
Bruins Tyler Seguin Lightning Victor Hedman
Canadiens P.K. Subban Maple Leafs Joffrey Lupul
Capitals Nicklas Backstrom Panthers Kris Versteeg
Devils Martin Brodeur Penguins Evgeni Malkin
Flyers Wayne Simmonds Rangers Ryan Callahan
Hurricanes Eric Staal Sabres Thomas Vanek
Islanders John Tavares Senators Craig Anderson
Jets Evander Kane  
Western Conference
Avalanche Matt Duchene Kings Anze Kopitar
Blackhawks Patrick Sharp Oilers Taylor Hall
Blue Jackets Sergei Bobrovsky Predators Mike Fisher
Blues Alex Pietrangelo Red Wings Jimmy Howard
Canucks Ryan Kesler Sharks Logan Couture
Coyotes Shane Doan Stars Jamie Benn
Ducks Andrew Cogliano Wild Mikko Koivu
Flames Dennis Wideman  
Wild Cards**
Maple Leafs James van Riemsdyk Sharks Joe Thornton
NHL 14 will be available for the Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system, and the PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system. NHL 14 releases on Sept. 10, 2013, in North America and Sept. 13, 2013, in Europe.
To download assets for the Official EA SPORTS NHL Playoff Prediction, please visit the EA press site at Info.ea.com. Visit theEA SPORTS NHL® 14 website for more details.
NHL 14 is in development at EA Canada in Vancouver and has not yet been rated by the ESRB or PEGI; visit www.esrb.org andwww.pegi.info for more information. NHL 13 is rated E10+ and PEGI 12. Become a fan of EA SPORTS® NHL on Facebook andfollow us on Twitter.
EA SPORTS is one of the leading sports entertainment brands in the world, with top-selling videogame franchises, award-winning interactive technology, fan programs and cross-platform digital experiences. EA SPORTS creates connected experiences that ignite the emotion of sports through industry-leading sports videogames, including Madden NFL football, FIFA SoccerNHL®hockey, NBA LIVE basketball, NCAA® FootballTiger Woods PGA TOUR® golf, SSX, and Fight Night boxing. For more information about EA SPORTS, including news, video, blogs, forums and game apps, please visit www.easports.com.
*The EA SPORTS NHL® Playoff Prediction is a computerized simulation conducted using artificial intelligence that incorporates real-life data from each team, such as player ratings and line combinations, and includes variances such as injuries and hot streaks to predict a realistic outcome of each game and series.
**Two wild card selections were made by EA SPORTS
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