Lightning depth on display during game one
The Lightning and Devils game was relatively close and what looked like could be overtime playoff hockey at one point, then Alex Killorn lasered one by Keith Kinkaid and from there it was all Lightning. Kucherov tallied one after that and it was game over. The Devils did show fight and signs of what can and will be a good series. With Steven Stamkos back this Lightning team will be tough to beat, the Lightning had Palat, Johnson, Gourde, Kucherov, and Killorn score Thursday night, it just goes to show this teams depth and what it is going to be like trying to play this team all series. This series is going to be a lot more different then most fans think. I am sensing a Devils upset consensus, but I am not sure why some would think that after looking at this Lightning line up and seeing game one yesterday some opinions may change.
Bruins topple the Leafs
This series is going to be a barn burner, a lot of fans think Toronto has this because of past history, but the Leafs are going to be challenged greatly vs this Bruins team. One story out of Thursday night was the first goal the Bruins scored may have been offsides(100% offsides, but…), Toronto never challenged the call and it in a way came back to hurt them. Another takeaway from last night is that the Bruins are GOOD. They have so much veteran presence in their line up and so much depth all across the board, I am not sure this team will go down as easy as we all think. Also, Nazem Kadri is guaranteed a 2-game suspension for his awful hit on Tommy Wingels during the game. No need for the hit, there was no play and Kardi completely and unnecessary hit a player that was falling down, hip to head as well, easy two games.
Columbus performs some magic, Panarin OT winner. Columbus leads 1-0
Columbus did it, they took one game in Washington, that was their job and they did it, a little harder than we thought but we did see our first playoff overtime game. This series is going to be so close, neck and neck all series, not one of these games will be a two-plus goal victory for either team. The Capitals Kuznetsov buried the first two, good sign for Washington but nothing from Ovechkin or Backstrom, the Capitals need these guys every night. Tomas Vanek proving his veteran use on the Blue Jackets once again scoring a huge goal for the squad but it was Seth Jones with the game tier, and then Artemi Panarin with the game-winner in overtime. The Blue Jackets are not going down as easy as last year so expect this team if they do not win to take it seven. Washington is a bit concerned now as their next game in Washington is a must win or they flirt with the possibility of being swept as they head to Columbus for game three and four.
Colorado kept it close but Predators take game one
The Avalanche had the lead for two periods, don’t forget that! The Avs came out flying from the start, scoring the first and answering right away when the Predators tied the game. The Avs showed signs of good play and making this series a dogfight but once the Preds got the lead it was game over from there. But Filip Forsberg tip-in goal and then dispy doodle around Samuel Girad, led the Predators to a game one victory. Pekka Rinne made 25 of 27 saves and one of which was unbelievable, throwing his pad in the air to stop a goal. Although Bernier allowed five goals he did not play terribly. It is going to be tough for the Avs to stay afloat and win this series with such a young and inexperienced roster. Once the Predators shut down and or slow down MacKinnon it will be tough for the Avalanche to rally this series. I am not sure why some if any had Colorado winning this but game one was exactly what we thought, yes Colorado hung around but once the Preds foot was on the throat it was game over.
Evander Kane 2 goals lead Sharks to game one upset
Evander Kane first career playoff game he scores two goals and leads the Sharks to game one victory. This guy is loving San Jose or its just a positive environment is the reason he has been so successful since being traded. The Sharks did what many thought they could do and took one in Anaheim now the pressure is on Anaheim for game two. Martin Jones made 25 saves for his 5th career playoff shutout. The Ducks getting into penalty trouble was the big crutch to their loss they took six penalties and although the Sharks went 1/6, they gave the Sharks a chance to play a little looser and be more creative and take chances. The Ducks stay out of the box it is a different game. Plus their own 0/3 power play is not great if they want to move on they need to capitalize on all chances they get. John Gibson did make his return this game, making 31 of 34 saves, but the Ducks did not help out Gibson and without Cam Fowler, this defense will for sure have trouble. But we can expect a much more disciplined and different Ducks team for game two.