NHL playoffs: Redoing our Stanley Cup predictions after Lightning's collapse

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SportsPulse: The Tampa Bay Lighting just completed one of the worst collapses in sports history. USA TODAY’s Trysta Krick puts the collapse into perspective by looking at the worst in other sports.
USA TODAY

We want a redo. Think of it as that college class in which your professor allows you to throw out your worst test grade. Only this time, sure, we want to forget about that poor effort, but also want to try to get it right. We can’t sleep at night knowing we failed our final exam.

That’s USA TODAY Sports’ NHL staff in a nutshell. All four of our panelists chose the Tampa Bay Lightning as the Stanley Cup champions. All four of us were very wrong. The Lightning were swept in four games by the Columbus Blue Jackets in the first round.

Thus, here is what our resubmitted test looks like — with new Eastern Conference winners, Stanley Cup champions and Conn Smythe nods.

Kevin Allen: East pick – Washington Capitals

Why the Capitals will win the Cup: Nine months ago they were doing keg stands with the Stanley Cup. These guys know what it takes to win it all. They won’t be rattled by a loss here or there or any kind of adversity. The Caps can beat you in many different…

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