NHL Blog Beat – May 13, 2012.

Post-mortems on the Capitals, Conference Final predictions, what the Maple Leafs can learn from the playoffs,  five defensemen they should be watching, and more.

What next for the Capitals?

THE STRANGEST ONE OF ALL/THE HOCKEY WRITERS/RUSSIAN MACHINE NEVER BREAKS/PUCKHEAD’S THOUGHTS: Post-mortems, autopsies and eulogies for the 2011-12 Washington Capitals, who were eliminated from the 2012 post-season by the NY Rangers.

PUCK DADDY/THE STRANGEST ONE OF ALL:  The Puck Daddy staff make their Conference Final prognostications, while Scotty Wazz analyses the Western Conference Final.

THE LEAFS NATION/THE HOCKEY WRITERS: Matt Stephen on what the Toronto Maple Leafs can learn from the 2012 playoffs, while Lukas Hardonk lists five defensemen they should keep an eye on in the off-season.

DEFENDING BIG D: Brandon Worley explains why good defense and goaltending doesn’t equal boring hockey.

CANES COUNTRY: Speculation over which current Hurricanes might be gone over the summer.

GREATEST HOCKEY LEGENDS: Joe Pelletier salutes hockey trailblazers.

HOCKEY WILDERNESS: Remembering Derek Boogaard on the anniversary of his death.