Your Rooting Guide to the Rest of the 2016 Stanley Cup Playoffs

The Red Wings' playoff run has come to an end, again far too early. Fans of Detroit once more have a long offseason to wring their hands and worry over the future of the team, but the hockey world continues spinning. Though it doesn't feel like they should, the Stanley Cup Playoffs are still going on. We all know that despite our team being eliminated, it's hard to turn away from hockey completely, because it's only a few short weeks until there's none left for the summer.

The question Detroit fans must ask themselves now is this: Who do I root for now that the Red Wings are done?

Eastern Conference: Who's Left?

Philadelphia Flyers: Basically the Ottawa Senators of 2016. Rode an insane hot streak to squeak into a wildcard spot, ran out of gas once the regular season ended. They saved themselves from the embarrassment of a sweep, but the series is 3-1 in Washington's favor heading back to DC. Don't waste your time here.

New York Islanders: If I'm ever mentally going through every team in the league, I always forget about the Devils and the Islanders. They're a very forgettable team. Plus their arena is an embarrassment. I honestly feel bad for their fans having to live with a freaking car getting better seats than half the actual spectators.

New York Rangers: This is the team you root for if you like to see goaltenders that deserve a Cup finally get one. Henrik Lundqvist has been the team MVP for the Rangers for probably his entire career. But they just got trounced 5-0 at Madison Square Garden and are now facing elimination. If you're like most Red Wings fans, you don't want to see good things happen to the Pittsburgh Penguins, so don't pick the Rangers if you want to save yourself the anger.

Pittsburgh Penguins: Hahahahahahahahahaha NO

Florida Panthers: It still feels like the Panthers are a paper tiger more than anything. They've got a blend of age and youth, a bouncing-back Roberto Luongo, Jaromir Jagr, the good Smith brother, and the Nicklas Lidstrom-idolizing Aaron Ekblad. But they've also got Jakub Kindl, who hilariously was dressed for Game 4 but didn't see a single second of ice time, leading to him not even being put on the boxscore.

Tampa Bay Lightning: This was perhaps a little easier to do last season, because it was Steve Yzerman's team and they were typically the lesser of two evils in the subsequent rounds. Not so this year. After the surprising amount of nastiness between them and the Red Wings, it's really hard to imagine supporting these jerks. Plus there's no Steven Stamkos to root for.

Washington Capitals: I can't think of a better team for Red Wings fans to pick to bandwagon this year. The Caps are the Red Wings of old, the President's Trophy winners that just seem to have it all together. Plus they've got a dynamic duo that rings beautifully familiar to Detroit supporters: a superstar Russian/Swede pairing with inexplicable chemistry on the ice. Finally, I know I can't be the only one tired of the narrative that Alexander Ovechkin can't be a good leader or is selfish because of the way he plays the game.

Final Verdict: Washington Capitals

Western Conference: Who's Left?

Minnesota Wild: The Wild play such boring hockey, I'd be worried if someone wanted to pick these guys over the powerhouse Stars. Plus it's real fun to watch Parise and Suter get bounced early every year when they have matching giant contracts, especially when their owner cried about the players getting paid too much.

Nashville Predators: These whiny little jerks have such an insecurity complex about the Red Wings, it's sad. I found that out first-hand when I was trying to get tickets to the game against Detroit this winter (can you get any more obvious than geo-locking tickets for that game and that game only?). I suppose you can say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery when it comes to their catfish thing, but that's actually just gross. And so is Mike Ribeiro. Don't root for a team with Mike Ribeiro.

San Jose Sharks: There's just too much residual hatred from playoff series past to support the Sharks. Sure, they're playing against Los Angeles, with their overrated goaltender, perpetual Norris runner-up, and notable dirty trash players, but it's still the Sharks. And even if they get themselves into the second round or beyond, they're guaranteed to choke in the end.

Los Angeles Kings: See above. Jonathan Quick is possibly the most overrated goaltender in the league, out of position and getting bailed out by his defense more than people realize. Speaking of their defense, Drew Doughty does not deserve the Norris trophy and y'all need to accept that. And if these reasons aren't enough to sway you out of cheering for LA, remember that they have Dustin Brown as their captain. And Milan Lucic, who likes to jab at other players' naughty bits from behind because he's a cowardly, injurious jerkwad.

Anaheim Ducks: Again, why would you want to root for these guys? They employ noted babies Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry, who have already been called out by their coach as always being the guys that take frustrated penalties instead of leading their team. Save yourself the perpetual need to shower, because you're going to feel dirty picking the Ducks.

St. Louis Blues: Ugh, the Blues? Yearly first-round flameouts even when they finally seem to be putting it all together. They have a track record of failure. Even Scotty Bowman couldn't coach this team to a Stanley Cup despite making the Final three years straight. Hell, they couldn't even get a single win in those three series. Literally their only saving grace is Vladimir Tarasenko, and that's just not enough.

Chicago Blackhawks: You're a masochistic one, aren't you? If preventing them from being the first team to repeat as Cup champions since the Red Wings did it in 1997 and 1998 isn't enough, just take a look at their roster. Duncan Keith is their only good defenseman, and his dirty play has shone through more often. Their so-called "rookie" is probably going to take away the Calder Trophy from a deserving actual rookie. And then there's all the horrible stuff that's come from this team in the last year or so. Their façade as a likable team has been shattered, and despite what they'd have you believe, the hate isn't because of all of their recent success.

Dallas Stars: This is just an exciting team to watch. Yeah, it feels kind of gross to root for noted frat boys Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin, but they've got some real good puck movers on the back end and a high-flying offense that's made all the more fun because they can actually outscore a lot of goaltending questions. It's also a Jim Nill team that has Patrick Eaves and his glorious beard. Have you seen that thing? It's amazing.

Final Verdict: Dallas Stars

So there you have it, Red Wings fans! This is the correct way to bandwagon the rest of the 2016 Stanley Cup Playoffs, so get to drinking away your pain and watch as weaker teams get eliminated one by one. Just don't blame me if your new favorite team lets you down. That's their fault for not bringing you happiness.

Who are you rooting for to win the cup now?

Dallas Stars141
Washington Capitals366
Los Angeles Kings14
St. Louis Blues46
Chicago Blackhawks (and also I'm an idiot)28
San Jose Sharks40
Anaheim Ducks33
New York Islanders17
Pittsburgh Penguins38
Minnesota Wild8
Florida Panthers22
New York Rangers20
Philadelphia Flyers15
Tampa Bay Lightning70
Nashville Predators12