The Stanley Cup playoffs kicked off this past Monday, and while the NHL has only been around for half a century, there are still surprises in store. Some of these include how some teams have fared against one another throughout their playoff history and what it really means when you get “the monkey off your back.”
The “when does nhl playoffs start” is a question that has been asked by many hockey fans. There have been some interesting takeaways from the Game 1s of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, and what it means for the rest of the first round.
The Stanley Cup playoffs in 2022 have gotten off to an exciting start, with a triple-overtime drama, two fights in one game, many shocks… and also multiple blowouts.
What are the important takeaways after watching the playoffs versions of all 16 playoff teams for the first time? What does all of this mean in terms of predicting what will happen in Game 2 and beyond?
After are the eight most essential topics to watch following the games on Monday and Tuesday:
More: Playoff Central The top 50 players in the playoffs are ranked.
Is Florida on the verge of a major upset?
The NHL’s top-seeded Tampa Bay Lightning were knocked out of the first round by Columbus only three years ago. Things like this do happen. Is this going to be Florida’s fate?
The Panthers’ performance in Game 1 against Washington was unimpressive, particularly given Florida was up 2-1 in the third period. The Panthers were the league’s top-scoring club throughout the regular season, with just 15 games with two goals or less. Offense is their superpower. The Panthers have now lost another Game 1 in a row, continuing a franchise-wide pattern that began in 1997. Is this a foreshadowing of things to come? Is Game 1 merely a blip on the radar that can be easily addressed in Game 2 by returning to regular-season form? The Panthers don’t have a long postseason history to go on, but they’ll be eager to show that the last few months were no fluke on Thursday. Shilton’s words
Crosby and Malkin are looking for one final ride.
Sidney Crosby, the captain of the Pittsburgh Penguins, has shown openness regarding the idea that this is the last Stanley Cup run for the core of his club, which won two straight Cups in 2016 and 2017. Unrestricted free agents Evgeni Malkin, Kris Letang, and Bryan Rust are among the Penguins’ unrestricted free agents this summer, the team’s first offseason under new ownership.
In Game 1 against the Rangers, the 34-year-old great seemed as if he didn’t want the trip to stop, throwing two spectacular passes to set up Jake Guentzel goals that erased a 2-0 Rangers lead. Malkin felt the same way. On a precise power-play goal that began with Letang and concluded with Rust, he received the main assist. He finished the game at 5:58 of triple overtime by redirecting the Penguins’ 83rd shot past Igor Shesterkin for the game winner and a 1-0 series lead. “I’m not thinking about my contract right now. It’s time to have a good time and play some games “According to Malkin. Wyshynski (Wyshynski)
A first-round Stanley Cup playoff meeting against the two-time defending Stanley Cup champion Lightning was Toronto’s prize following a franchise-record 115-point regular season. Is this a difficult break for the Leafs? Not in the first game. From the opening of Toronto’s 5-0 triumph, it dominated Tampa Bay. The Leafs’ five-minute penalty kill in the first period was a masterclass in efficiency, and their offensive game took off after that.
Auston Matthews scored two goals. Mitch Marner ended an 18-game goalless streak in the playoffs. Jack Campbell, the goaltender, was outstanding, making 23 saves in the shutout. By the time both teams were trading punches halfway through the third, the Lightning were out of rhythm, out of sorts, and plain demoralized. There’s still plenty of time in this series, but Toronto showed it won’t be scared by Tampa Bay’s recent success. And with Michael Bunting eyeing a return to the top line with Matthews and Marner for Game 2 on Wednesday, Toronto might only get better. Shilton’s words
The Shesterkin Show is a television show hosted by Shesterkin.
First- and second-round games will be televised on ESPN and ESPN2, with one conference finals series on ESPN and the Stanley Cup Final on ABC. • What to Look For • • Watch the NHL on ESPN by subscribing to ESPN+
The Blues shut out the Minnesota Wild, who were the NHL’s third-highest scoring home club this season (4.10 goals per game). Any fears that Ville Husso might falter in the playoff limelight were unfounded. The goalie’s effort was overshadowed by the play in front of him. Six Wild power plays were stopped by St. Louis. At 5-on-5, the Blues found ways to restrict Kirill Kaprizov’s and his line with Mats Zuccarello and Ryan Hartman’s creativity. In fact, in Game 1, the line failed to produce a single high-danger shot attempt. Minnesota will need to make some changes to improve their even-strength chances and get something out of their power play.
Meanwhile, Game 1 saw the Flames throw a 1-0 shutout over Dallas. They kept the Stars’ explosive top line — Jason Robertson, Joe Pavelski, and Roope Hintz — without a high-danger shot attempt and a minus-4 shots-on-goal disadvantage at 5-on-5, much as the Blues did. Coach Darryl Sutter was confident in throwing any of his lines against them, so it took a team effort to keep that line under control. The Stars were limited to 16 shots, all of which were stopped by Jacob Markstrom, who had nine shutouts during the regular season. A great start for one of the West’s favorites, and a game that only Darryl Sutter could enjoy — which he did. Wyshynski (Wyshynski)
Nashville needs a fresh approach.
The Predators had a tough start in Game 1. Getty Images/Dustin Bradford/Icon Sportswire
Juuse Saros would not be available until Game 3 back in Nashville, the Predators knew heading into Game 1. For the wild-card Predators, playing top-tier Colorado, it was a less-than-ideal scenario. However, the results on Tuesday were startlingly poor. David Rittich took the start and let up five goals on 13 shots before being replaced by Connor Ingram with less than five minutes left in the first period. Nashville went on to lose by a score of 7-2.
There’s no way of knowing when Saros will be ready to return, and if Game 1 is any indicator, Nashville’s game plan will need to change going ahead. The Predators have a pair of 40-goal scorers in the regular season — Matt Duchene and Filip Forsberg, who scored both of Nashville’s Game 1 goals — but they won’t be able to match the Avalanche’s production. Rather than just letting the Avalanche dominate offensively (like the Predators did in Game 1), Nashville must elevate the physical intensity of this series to throw Colorado off. In Game 1, the Avalanche sliced through Nashville’s defense with ease, and if that trend continues, the Predators will be out in a week. Shilton’s words
Again, the Oilers’ goaltending is a problem.
There was much criticism when the Edmonton Oilers elected to bring back Mike Smith and Mikko Koskinen as goaltenders last summer. Last summer, there were a slew of goalies available via trade and free agency. Instead of re-signing Smith to a two-year contract that would carry him through his 40th birthday, why not improve the position? Smith subsequently silenced his doubters with a nine-game winning run heading into the playoffs, during which he only surrendered more than two goals twice.
In Game 1 against the Los Angeles Kings, he transformed into a pumpkin. He made an unforgivable blunder, throwing the puck into the slot to Kings forward Alex Iafallo, after allowing several bogus goals. Smith made a fantastic save on Iafallo’s attempt, but Phillip Danault later scored the game-winning goal on that sequence.
Will Smith be available for Game 2? Coach Jay Woodcroft was evasive when asked about his starting quarterback. “One blunder with the puck. He made a huge save as a result of the mistake. I believe that as a group, we can do something to assist him in that scenario “According to Woodcroft. “It’s a true talent of his. He’d want to return to that one play you’re referring about.” Wyshynski (Wyshynski)
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