They don’t call him the Great One for nothing.
In his first year as a broadcaster with TNT, Wayne Gretzky was tasked with giving his Stanley Cup playoff predictions and went a perfect eight-for-eight in the first round.
Not too shabby.
— NHL (@NHL) May 16, 2022
Gretzky even picked the correct number of games played in three series, rightly picking the St. Louis Blues and Florida Panthers to win their series in six games, and nailing the Tampa Bay Lightning beating the Toronto Maple Leafs in seven.
Those correct predictions mean that Gretzky’s bracket is perfectly intact for Round 2, including what had to be the most awkward pick he had to make.
Gretzky, who won four Stanley Cups with the Edmonton Oilers, and was a member of their front office less than a year ago, is picking with his brain, not his heart.
The Great One has the arch-rival Calgary Flames beating his beloved Oilers in the Battle of Alberta.
The Flames and Oilers haven’t played each other in the playoffs since 1991, three years after Gretzky left Edmonton for Los Angeles.
This is just the sixth-ever meeting between Calgary and Edmonton in the playoffs, with the Oilers winning in 1983, 1984, 1988, and 1991. Calgary’s lone Battle of Alberta series win came in 1986.
While Gretzky is picking Calgary to go to the Conference Final, that’s where his Flames support ends. He has the Blues, Panthers, and Carolina Hurricanes joining Calgary in the final four and is picking Carolina to beat St. Louis in the Stanley Cup Final.