It appears that this year’s NHL playoffs just might be another good one for Boston Bruin fans, that is if EA Sports‘ annual simulation is at all accurate. According to the simulation, the Boston Bruins will be taking the Stanley Cup home once again, beating the San Jose Sharks in Game 6. While that doesn’t sound too dramatic, if the rest of the NHL 14 predictions come true, there’ll be plenty more drama before the final game.
According to the NHL 14’s take on the Eastern Conference games, a game which unlike some of its EA Sports brethren didn’t make it onto the new PS4 and Xbox One consoles, the Montreal Canadiens and New York Rangers will advance to the second round after leading their teams to 4-0 sweeps. In the second round, The Canadiens will lose to the Bruins, and the Rangers will advance after beating the Pittsburgh Penguins in six games. This would lead to the most dramatic game in the simulation, which would be Patrice Bergeron of the Bruins clinching the conference win over the Rangers by a goal five minutes into overtime of Game 7.
The Western Conference would have other drama. The Chicago Blackhawks would come back from losing the series 3-1 to beating the St. Louis Blues in Game 7. The Minnesota Wild almost beat the Colorado Avalanche, taking the series to Game 7 where the Avalanche would win. The second round saw the defending champion Chicago Blackhawks’ dream of another Stanley Cup game crushed by the Colorado Avalanche. The San Jose Sharks will become the leading California team, as they will beat The Los Angeles Kings and the Annaheim Ducks in order to get to the conference finals, where they would beat the Colorado Avalanche in Game 6. The simulation then goes on to say that the Boston Bruins will win the Stanley Cup in six games, with David Krejci ending the playoffs with 21 points.
EA Sports’ simulations use real-life player data, and many steps are taken in order to make it as realistic and truthful as possible – got a video game sim. It also utilizes up-to-date line combinations, as well as variances dealing with player injuries or hot streaks. It’s because of this that a lot of the forecasted results seem plausible, and hard to argue to some degree. Even so, it’s often easy to disregard the data of a simulation using AI, even if the developers know the game of hockey extremely well. However, that’s not to say that these simulations are always accurate, as a previous prediction from 2012 was almost completely wrong. However, when put into more specific parameters, such as the final two teams of the playoffs, the EA Sports game simulations can be fairly accurate.
Do these predictions seem unlikely? Think that it’ll be even more accurate than the last simulation? Let us know in the comments below!
NHL 14 is now available on the PS3 and Xbox 360. Head over to the NHL 14 blog for more details on the simulation.