At the start of the 2013-14 NHL season, our NHL 14 Season Simulation predicted a lot of things, including who we thought would win the 2014 Stanley Cup Finals. In all, we managed to correctly predict 10 of the 16 teams that made the playoffs this season.
But with the NHL playoffs series set, we decided to go back and have our NHL 14 simulation engine pump out a winner and this is how it turned out:
Top Playoff Stories
- The President Trophy winning Boston Bruins return to the Stanley Cup Finals for their second straight year. This time though, they manage to lift their second Cup in four years, disposing of the San Jose Sharks in six games.
- Boston Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask wins the Conn Smythe Trophy finishing the playoffs with an outstanding 1.56 GAA, .948 SV% and four shutouts.
- Jarome Iginla wins his first Stanley Cup, after previously reaching the finals a decade prior with the Calgary Flames!
The Road to the Stanley Cup
- In the first round, franchise goalies Carey Price of the Montreal Canadiens and Henrik Lundqvist of the New York Rangers both lead their teams to 4-0 game sweeps over the Tampa Bay Lightning and Philadelphia Flyers respectively.
- In the second round, the heated rivalry between the Canadiens and Boston Bruins reach epic proportions. However, the Bruins' size was too much for the Habs, as the only Canadian team in the playoffs lost in five games. Pittsburgh Penguins’ Sidney Crosby also left the playoffs earlier than expected, with the New York Rangers pulling off a six game upset.
- In the Conference Finals, the cities of Boston and New York once again went head-to-head. The series went to a Game 7 overtime – where Patrice Bergeron was once again clutch for the Bruins, scoring five minutes into the OT.
- In the first round, the Chicago Blackhawks came back from a 3-1 deficient to beat the St. Louis Blues in seven games. The wild card Minnesota Wild almost upset the Avalanche taking them to a seventh and deciding game.
- In the second round, the Blackhawks dreams of a Stanley Cup repeat came to an end with a heartbreaking Game 7 loss to the young and talented Avalanche. The Sharks became the champions of California by beating the Anaheim Ducks in five games after previously beating the Los Angeles Kings in six.
- In the Conference Finals, the Sharks' size, skill, and experience was too much for the young Avs team to handle. San Jose won the series in six, thanks in large part to the performances of Joe Thornton, Logan Couture and Patrick Marleau.
2014 Stanley Cup Finals
After their dramatic Eastern Conference Final series win, the Boston Bruins controlled the Stanley Cup Finals ending the match-up in six games in San Jose. Joe Thornton and Logan Couture were the top two in playoff points, but it wasn’t enough as the Bruins’ size and skill punished the Sharks into submission. Boston’s David Krejci was once again a playoff stud, leading the Bruins with 21 points.
The simulation is conducted by using artificial intelligence within NHL 14 that uses real-life data from each player to predict a realistic outcome of each game.