It's something I thought I'd never say, and certainly something I thought I'd never believe.
However, as the 2012 Stanley Cup Playoffs are just days away, I am positive that what I believe and what I will say is as close to the truth as one could get, when handicapping the match-up between the Detroit Red Wings and the Nashville Predators.
The Red Wings will need a miracle if they're to win the series.
This is a position I thought I'd never take, and one I thought the Wings would never be in.
Yet, nevertheless, the Red Wings are facing a nearly insurmountable challenge as they prepare to go up against a team I believe is destined to come out of the West this year.
It's not that the Predators are the "better" team—I don't think they are.
And it's not that the Red Wings are coming into the playoffs on a decidedly flat note (they finished their last 10 games 4-4-2), though they are.
And, yes, I'm well aware that what happens in the regular season has very little to do with what happens in the post-season.
However, I submit to you that season-long trends, lingering injuries and the realities of a team roster don't suddenly disappear come game one of round one.
It's not a singular thing that I can point to that makes me so certain that the Red Wings will need some form of divine intervention to play any time past the end of April.
Don't get me wrong, I do believe in miracles.
But I always figured hockey miracles were reserved for the most under of under dogs and the least likely of unlikely heroes.
The mighty Detroit Red Wings have no need for miracles, for they've got their own pantheon of hockey gods with which to lay waste to the competition. Or so I always thought.
That the Red Wings do have some of the best players on the planet is not in dispute, but, as we will see, that alone is no longer enough to ensure victory this post-season.
Fate has placed five enormous obstacles in front of the Red Wings' path to success.
Obstacles that only an omnipotent hockey deity will be able to lift out of their way.