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NHL Contenders & Pretenders: Three Words about Why Your Team Can & Can't Win the Cup

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Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

We're into the part of the season where the real analysis is starting to fly about which teams are true contenders and which ones are hopeless pretenders. We've got a pretty good grasp on which eight teams from the East will make the playoffs already. The West is a bit more open, but we're probably down to a 10 or 11 team race.

That's too limited though. I don't want to give up hope on anybody in early February. I also don't want to crown the cup champs this early. However, we're pragmatists here at WIIM. There aren't going to be 30 contenders and we can summarize why every team sucks without wasting unnecessary space. With that in mind, we limited ourselves to only three words (allowing for contractions) in giving reasons why all 30 teams can win the Stanley Cup, but will ultimately fail.

Check it out.

Three Words Why They'll Win Three Words Why They'll Lose
ANAHEIM powerhouse forward corps high-event gambling
ARIZONA hockey gods' pity? won't make playoffs
BOSTON rough and tumble bunch of babies
BUFFALO not technically eliminated come on, really?
CALGARY activate Gaudreau mode not that good
CAROLINA Metro division collapses not enough Staals
CHICAGO they're really good should've kept Leddy
COLORADO PDO rides again Roy isn't magic
COLUMBUS injuries end, luck missing too much
DALLAS high-flying offense low-hanging fruit
DETROIT energy, experience mix dat defense tho
EDMONTON shady business dealings they know how
FLORIDA steadily improving youth still not close
LOS ANGELES acquire Ryan Johansen no Columbus trade
MINNESOTA good skating team short one goaltender
MONTREAL Price over-reliance Price over-reliance
NASHVILLE Rinne beats all no playoff experience
NEW JERSEY Satan's a fan Marty ain't returning
NY ISLANDERS great possession team thin between pipes
NY RANGERS Lundvist is amazing forwards are meh
OTTAWA ultimate Cinderella dream c'mon, it's Canada
PHILADELPHIA Giroux and Voracek every other player
PITTSBURGH top tier talent depth below Crosby
SAN JOSE loads of skill can't stop choking
ST LOUIS skill and size mentally fragile team
TAMPA BAY scoring. defense. goaltending inconsistent defensive play
TORONTO ha. ha. ha. ha. ha. ha.
VANCOUVER major balanced scoring Ryan Miller implosion
WASHINGTON don't face Halak Orpik top pair
WINNIPEG Little Kane Byfuglien more Ondrej Pavelec

What three words would you use to describe your team's reasons for/against?