NHL Blog Beat – April 9, 2012.

Western and Eastern Conference first round predictions, top ten playoff storylines, Stanley Cup playoff TV schedules, a look at which series could have the most intrigue, Stars forward Jamie Benn had a season worth discussing, why it’s worthwhile to be a fan, a playoff bracket for Wild fans, an open letter to the NHL off-season from a Lightning fan, why your fan base should root for the Coyotes, and Absurd Goalie Monday.

PUCK DADDY: Greg Wyshynski with his Western and Eastern first round NHL playoff predictions, while Sean Leahy presents ten storylines worth watching during the Stanley Cup playoffs.

PUCK THE MEDIA: Steve Lepore has your “super schedule” for all the opening round games.

RED LIGHT DISTRICT HOCKEY BLOG: Ryan Porth examines which opening round series could have the most intrigue. What, the Panthers and Devils aren’t the most intriguing?

Another solid season for Benn.

BACKHAND SHELF: Cam Charron believes Dallas Stars forward Jamie Benn had a season worth discussing, while Ellen Etchingham examines why it’s worthwhile to be a fan.

HOCKEY WILDERNESS: The third annual “Sure Wish We Had Something Better To Do With Our Time” Stanley Cup playoff bracket.

RAW CHARGE: An open letter to the off-season from a Lightning fan. “Ahem, Dear Off-season, you suck!”

FIVE FOR HOWLING: Travis Hair on why your fan base – especially if it has been eliminated from the Stanley Cup playoffs – should cheer for the Phoenix Coyotes. No offense to the Chicago Blackhawks and their fans, but I really, really want to see the Coyotes end their first round playoff woes, which date back to the late-1980s, when they were the original Winnipeg Jets.

THE STRANGEST ONE OF ALL: Scotty Wazz with another edition of “Absurd Goalie Monday”. This week: Yves Belanger.