The Stanley Cup playoffs continued yesterday. There was four very entertaining games. In the Eastern Conference the New York Rangers played the New Jersey Devils and the Tampa Bay Lightning played the Toronto Maple Leafs. In the Western Conference the Vegas Golden Knights played the Winnipeg Jets and the Seattle Kraken played the Colorado Avalanche.
The Stanley Cup Playoffs continue tonight with four more games.
It was game one of round one for the New Jersey Devils vs New York Rangers series. The Rangers would open the scoring 4′ minutes into the game. Vladimir Tarasenko would get the games opening goal. Cris Kreider would score for the Rangers on the powerplay to expand their lead. The Rangers had a 2-0 lead after the first period.
Ryan Lindgren would score the only goal in the second period to give the Rangers a 3-0 lead.
In the third period Cris Kreider would score his second goal of the game on the powerplay to expand the Rangers lead to 4-0. The Devils would score late in the third period. Jack Hughes would score the only goal for the Devils with less than three minutes to go in the game. His goal would come on a penalty shot. Filip Chytil would score the last goal of the game to give the Rangers one more goal. The final score was 5-1 Rangers. The Rangers now have a 1-0 series lead.
The Devils outshot the Rangers. That is like the only positive thing the Devils can really take away from this game. The Rangers were in control of this one. The Devils didn’t even keep it close. At this point it looks like the Rangers are going to run right through the Devils.
Game two will be on Thursday April 20th at 4:30pm PST.
Going into game one of the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Tampa Bay Lightning there were a lot of questions surrounding Toronto’s playoff capabilities. After Multiple years of first round exits what is Toronto going to do? Tampa Bay scored the games opening goal just over a minute into the game. Pierre-Edouard Bellemare would score the games opening goal and give the Lightning a 1-0 lead. Anthony Cirelli score to make it a two goal lead. In the final minute of the first period Nikita Kucherov would score on the powerplay to add to the Lightnings lead. The Lightning had a 3-0 lead after the first period.
The Ryan O’Reilly would score on the powerplay in the second period to get the Maple Leafs on the board. William Nylander would score for the Maple Leafs on the powerplay to bring the Lightnings lead down to one goal. Brayden Point would score on the powerplay for the Lightning to give them another two goal lead. Corey Perry would score a powerplay goal to add to the Lightnings lead. Brayden Point then scored his scond powerplay goal with under a minute to go in the second period to expand the Lightnings lead. The score was 6-2 Lightning going into the third period.
Ross Colton would score in the third period to give the Lightning their final goal of the game. Calle Jarnkrok would score one more for the Maple Leafs but it would not be enough. The final score was 7-3 Lightning. The Lightning now have a 1-0 series lead.
This was the game Toronto needed to prove itself. They did not. They fell well short of the mark in what can only be described as a brutal loss. Toronto fans were even leaving the game with 13′ minutes to go. Things do not look good for Toronto right now. On the other side the series is now Tampa Bays to lose. After their performance in this game it is hard to see them losing the series. I think the only way they will lose this series is if they take their foot off the gas. It is only game one but if Toronto does not come out and dominate game two, I don’t see them winning this series.
Game two of this series will be on Thursday April 20th at 4:00pm PST.
The first Western Conference game of the night saw the Vegas Golden Knights host the Winnipeg Jets. Neither team was able to score in the first period. This was the first scoreless period of the 2023 Stanley Cup Playoffs. About halfway through the first period Morgan Barron left the game after taking a skate to the face during a play at the Vegas net. He would eventually return to the game after receiving seventy two stitches. The score would remain at 0-0 after the first period.
Kyle Connor would score the opening goal of the game early in the second period. His goal gave the jets a 1-0 lead. Pierre-Luc Dubois would add to the Jets lead a minute later. The Golden Knights would cut the lead in half with a goal from William Karlsson. The score was 2-1 Jets heading into the third period.
Blake Wheeler would score to put the Jets back up by two goals. Adam Lowry would score to add to the Jets lead. Adam Lowry would score his second goal of the game on the powerplay with under a minute to go give the Jets a four goal lead. The final score was 5-1 Jets. The Winnipeg Jets now have a 1-0 series lead.
Vegas wasn’t taking shots. They weren’t getting opportunities. It was a big disappointment for them. For the Jets this is huge. It’s the upset they wanted. They now lead the series and have a lot of momentum going into the game two.
Game two will be on Thursday April 20th at 7:00pm PST.
In the last game of the night the Colorado Avalanche played the Seattle Kraken. This was the Krakens first ever playoff game. the Avalanche were coming into this game as defending champions. Eeli Tolvanen would score the games opening goal. His goal would be the Seattle Krakens first ever playoff goal. It also gave the Kraken their first ever playoff lead. Mikko Rntanen would tie the game after he scored for the Avalanche. The score was tied at 1-1 after the first period.
Alex Wennberg would score the only goal in the second period. His goal would give the Kraken the lead. The Kraken would take a 2-1 lead into the third period.
Morgan Geekie would score the only goal in the third period. His goal would give the Kraken a two goal lead and put the game out of reach for the Avalanche. The final score was 3-1 Kraken. This game was the Krakens first every playoff win. It was also their first every playoff away win. Not too many teams get to win their first ever playoff game. They also took a 1-0 series lead. This is also their first every playoff series lead. At firsts for Seattle.
It was a close hard fought for game and Seattle just got the edge on Colorado. At this point I expect the rest of the series to be hard fought for and super entertaining. I think Colorado will win the next game. I think Seattle will win either game three or four. Prior to this result I don’t think anyone was thinking of a Seattle upset. Right now Seattle upsetting Colorado in the first round is a very real possibility. This was also the first time during the 2023 Stanley Cup Playoffs that the away teams and lower seeded teams all beat the home teams and higher seeds.
Game two will be on Thursday April 20th at 6:30pm PST.
Game twos start tonight. The Carolina Hurricanes have a chance to take a 2-0 series lead over the New York Islanders. Will the Islanders be able to split the first two games? Will the Hurricanes be able to go to New York with a chance to put a strangle hold on the series.
The Boston Bruins have a chance to take a 2-0 series lead over the Florida Panthers. Will the Panthers be able to stand up to the Bruins? Will the Bruins continue to overwhelm the Panthers?
The Minnesota Wild have a chance to take a 2-0 series lead over the Dallas Stars in what promises to be another close and highly entertaining game. Will they need overtime to decide a winner for the second game in a row? Will the Stars win on home ice? Will the Wild continue to upset the stars?
The Los Angeles Kings have a chance to take a 2-0 series lead over the Edmonton Oilers. Will the Oilers find their rhythm? Will the Oilers give up multiple two goals leads again? Will the Kings continue to stun the Oilers. Will the officiating be any better? Will the Oilers fans throw things on the ice again?