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04-14-2010, 06:25 AM
The wait in Chicago is over as Hawks take Cup
Tuesday, 04.13.2010 / 2:29 PM / 2010 Stanley Cup Playoffs - Conference Quarterfinals - NHL.com
By Rocky Bonanno - NHL.com Staff Writer

The Stanley Cup is coming to Chicago for the first time in 49 years and in incredibly dramatic fashion, while Pittsburgh's one-year reign as champ is coming to a close.

That is what was determined in a 2010 Stanley Cup Playoffs simulation by video game giant EA SPORTS. Using its award-winning NHL 10 game, EA's computerized simulation was conducted using artificial intelligence that uses 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.

EA's simulation concluded that Blackhawks' captain Jonathan Toews will end the Cup drought by scoring seven minutes into overtime for a 2-1 win in Game 7 against the defending champion Penguins. Goaltender Cristobal Huet makes 43 saves for the win.

Game 7 is only one of three contests that will go to overtime in the Final. Chicago takes Game 1, 3-2, and Pittsburgh staves off elimination with a 4-3 victory in Game 6 on Bill Guerin's winning goal.

Chicago defenseman Duncan Keith will be awarded the Conn Smythe Trophy as the most valuable player of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, scoring 8 goals and 25 points. In the seven games against Pittsburgh, Keith will post 4 goals, including the overtime winner in Game 1, and a plus-5 rating. Keith will also score overtime goals in Games 3 and 6 of the Conference Quarterfinals against Nashville.

Patrick Kane leads the Blackhawks in postseason scoring with 27 points. Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin of Pittsburgh will tie for the League lead in playoff scoring with 31 points apiece.

Only one series in the first round will last seven games, and the No. 7 Flyers will upset the No. 2 Devils, 1-0, in the final contest. Both conference finals will also end in seven games, with Pittsburgh knocking off Washington, 3-0, and Chicago outlasting Vancouver, 3-2.

In their Eastern Conference Final showdown, Sidney Crosby will score 5 goals and 9 points against the Capitals, while Alex Ovechkin records 3 goals and 8 points against the Penguins.

EA's 2010 Stanley Cup Playoff Results

Conference Quarterfinals
Capitals def. Canadiens, 4-0
Penguins def. Senators, 4-0
Sabres def. Bruins, 4-2
Flyers def. Devils, 4-3
Avalanche def. Sharks, 4-2
Red Wings def. Coyotes, 4-2
Canucks def. Kings, 4-1
Blackhawks def. Predators, 4-2

Conference Semifinals
Capitals def. Flyers, 4-2
Penguins def. Sabres, 4-2
Canucks def. Red Wings, 4-2
Blackhawks def. Avalanche, 4-0

Conference Finals
Penguins def. Capitals, 4-3
Blackhawks def. Canucks, 4-3

Stanley Cup Final
Game 1 -- Chicago 3, Pittsburgh 2 (OT)
Game 2 -- Pittsburgh 2, Chicago 1
Game 3 -- Chicago 4, Pittsburgh 1
Game 4 -- Pittsburgh 5, Chicago 2
Game 5 -- Chicago 5, Pittsburgh 1
Game 6 -- Pittsburgh 4, Chicago 3 (OT)
Game 7 -- Chicago 2, Pittsburgh 1 (OT)

2010 Stanley Cup Playoffs scoring leaders

Sidney Crosby, Pit. 16 15 31
Evgeni Malkin, Pit. 11 20 31
Alex Ovechkin, Wsh. 15 13 28
Patrick Kane, Chi. 12 15 27
Jonathan Toews, Chi. 15 10 25
Duncan Keith, Chi. 8 17 25
Sergei Gonchar, Pit. 2 16 18
Patrick Sharp, Chi. 11 6 17
Chris Kunitz, Pit. 8 8 16
Kris Versteeg, Chi. 8 8 16