This year, the NHL will be celebrating its 100th anniversary and it’s been a great one so far. The playoffs are going to have some really exciting matchups this spring as we get ready for June 22nd when Team Canada takes on Switzerland in round 2 of their battle for the number 1 spot overall.
The “stanley cup playoffs 2022 schedule” is a list of all the games, dates, and times for the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs.
While the first round of the 2022 Stanley Cup playoffs included far too many blowouts for our tastes, it also featured at least three Game 7s, the ultimate “tension convention.”
According to ESPN Stats & Information, Saturday will be the first time since Apr. 30, 2014, that there will be three Game 7s played on the same day, and it will also be the first time in NHL history that two Game 7s will be hosted by Canadian teams on the same day.
We’re breaking down a path to victory for each team, identifying the X factors in all three games, and making final-score predictions to help you get ready for Boston Bruins-Carolina Hurricanes (4:30 p.m. ET, ESPN), Tampa Bay Lightning-Toronto Maple Leafs (7 p.m. ET, TNT), and Los Angeles Kings-Edmonton Oilers (10 p.m. ET, ESPN).
CAR-BOS TOR-TB EDM-LA EDM-LA
Watch live on ESPN at 4:30 p.m. ET.
Brad Marchand (4 G | 7 A) leads the Bruins in scoring. Hurricanes’ Tony DeAngelo (1 G | 7 A)
Boston’s path to victory: The greatest news for the Bruins is that they have nothing to lose. Overall, Carolina has been the superior team in this series. Going in, they were the better seed. However, Boston still has a chance to go over them.
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Carolina is under extreme pressure to win Game 7. The Bruins are just allowed to play. The Bruins’ superpower will be this. Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand provide a wealth of experience to the team. David Pastrnak and Taylor Hall are both goal scorers for them. Jeremy Swayman provides rock-solid goaltender, while Charlie McAvoy leads a talented back end. To win Game 7, Boston must just be themselves. — Shilton
Carolina’s road to victory: This is why the regular season is so important. The Hurricanes return to Raleigh nursing their wounds, but knowing that they dominated the Bruins in this series on home ice.
They’ve outscored them 15-4, but they’ve done so by scoring early and frequently. Carolina won their home games by scores of 2-0, 3-0, and 4-0. In all three home games, they’ve taken less penalties. Antti Raanta has a.974 save percentage in Raleigh, and they’ve improved their goaltending. Against the Bruins’ top two lines, they can get the matchups they want. “Obviously, having the last change at home is advantageous. You must, however, come to play “Jaccob Slavin, a defender, agreed. They’ll come to play because of the intensity and passion of their home crowd. Wyshynski says
Shilton’s X factor: Goaltending might be the deciding factor. Carolina has been missing starter Frederik Andersen for the whole series. In his absence, Raanta has been outstanding, and Swayman has been similarly impressive since taking over for Linus Ullmark. However, Swayman is riding high after a Game 6 victory, and the Bruins might benefit greatly from his confidence.
Line matching is Wyshynski’s X factor. When it came to moving Sebastian Aho away from the Bruins’ Bergeron and Marchand, coach Rod Brind’Amour raised the white flag in Boston. Bergeron spent the most of his time against the Hurricanes’ top line because the Bruins had the last change. Carolina used Jordan Staal’s line against Bergeron and Marchand in their previous three victories, while keeping Aho away from them. Try it again, and the Aho line may be the difference in Game 7.
Shilton: 3-2 final score prediction Hurricanes 5-3 Bruins Wyshynski
7 p.m. ET (TNT)
Lightning’s Nikita Kucherov (2 G | 6 A) is the leading scorer. Maple Leafs’ Auston Matthews (4 G | 4 A)
Tampa Bay’s path to victory: The Maple Leafs may speak all they want about being the superior club in the series and their previous playoff failures buried in the past (they haven’t won a playoff series since 2004). It is, however, Game 7. The Toronto Maple Leafs are the team. It’s the first time in the series that the Lightning have had to sow doubt in their opponents’ thoughts and watch what twisted limbs develop from them.
In terms of strategy, the Lightning must play a tighter defense in front of Andrei Vasilevskiy and not allow the Leafs to score many goals in a row, as they did in the past two games. The way to triumph is obvious. Steven Stamkos, Victor Hedman, Ryan McDonagh, Brayden Point, Nikita Kucherov, Alex Killorn, and Andrei Vasilevskiy have all done it before. Last season, the Lightning advanced to the Stanley Cup Final with a Game 7 victory. When the Leafs have had a chance to eliminate their opponents during the Auston Matthews/Mitch Marner era, they are 0-8. Wyshynski says
Toronto’s path to victory: The Leafs’ previous history of failing to progress in the playoffs should be ample incentive to get the job done in Game 7. In Game 6, Toronto was the superior team. Given the amount of chances they had, losing in overtime was a bitter pill to take. Vasilevskiy was outstanding in goal in Game 6, and Toronto will expect the same in Game 7. The Lightning have shown over the previous two years that they can triumph on a huge stage.
Despite this, Toronto has dominated Tampa Bay in this series. Matthews, Marner, William Nylander, and John Tavares have all played significant roles in the team’s previous two games. Jack Campbell has returned to the net. The Leafs have a terrific chance of winning if they can just maintain the current quo and test Vasilevskiy a bit more with traffic in front of him. — Shilton
Shilton’s X factor is his ability to manage situations rather than his ability to play. The series has been characterised by large momentum fluctuations. By penalties, both called and uncalled. By seizing and squandering chances. Tampa Bay has a Stanley Cup history here, but Toronto should not be intimidated. Campbell has a save percentage of.893 in this series, but so does Vasilevskiy (.885). To this far, almost everything has been equally balanced. The winner of Game 7 will be the squad that can remain calm, cool, and collected the longest.
The X-factor of Wyshynski: The Maple Leafs will have to break a different mind-boggling trend to move to the next round, despite all the hype about the Lightning’s astounding 17-0 record following playoff defeats (eight straight losses in games that would have won them a series). Vasilevskiy has a shutout in each of Tampa Bay’s previous five series triumphs, including two Stanley Cup-clinching victories. Let’s be honest: He hasn’t been outstanding this series, with a.885 save percentage against a porous defense. He’s shut the door on several series in the past when the Lightning were set to close.
Predicted final score: Shilton: 4-2 Toronto Maple Leafs Maple Leafs 4-3 (OT) Wyshynski
10 p.m. ET | ESPN live stream
Adrian Kempe (2 goals, 4 assists) and Connor McDavid (3 goals, 9 assists) are the top scorers.
Los Angeles’ path to victory: “First goal wins” is a tired adage in the Stanley Cup playoffs, but it’s unquestionably true in this series. The Kings have struck first in three of their triumphs, but not in their three defeats. Scoring early enables the Kings to get their defensive stance in place. Padding that advantage creates a safety net for when Edmonton’s Connor McDavid scores.
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But they’ll need two things to win Game 7. First, they must equal their competitiveness with the Oilers, who were the superior team at 5-on-5 in Game 6. They’ll also need someone to come up and make an offensive impact. In Game 1, Trevor Moore scored three points. Carl Grundstrom scored three points in Game 4’s victory. Adrian Kempe had three points and scored the game-winning overtime goal in Game 5. This time, who will be the hero? Wyshynski says
Edmonton’s winning strategy is to pass the puck to Connor McDavid. I’m joking (sort of). In this series, though, Edmonton’s talents have carried the day, from Connor McDavid (12 points) to Evander Kane (seven goals) to Leon Draisaitl (eight points). Those big names will have to shine once again against a Kings club with plenty of offensive depth and the ability to clamp down defensively.
Jonathan Quick, on the other hand, has been both revelatory and creaky throughout this series. The Oilers like creating rush opportunities, but making Quick uncomfortable in traffic and committing to the cycle game early on might pay well. The last game of any series is a marathon effort. Game 7 must be treated as such by the Oilers. — Shilton
Phillip Danault is Shilton’s X-factor. How valuable has he been to the Kings in this series, and throughout the season? With his smothering defensive approach, he has often vexed the Oilers. Whether it’s winning important faceoffs, scoring timely goals, or effectively fighting for loose pucks, Danault does it all for L.A. He’s the definition of a game-changer, capable of swinging Game 7 in L.A.’s favor.
Does Quick have another legendary performance in him, thanks to Wyshynski’s X factor? The Kings goalkeeper fought hard in each of their wins, including a 31-save effort in Game 4 that clinched the series. While we don’t anticipate that kind of effort in this game, Quick epitomizes the X factor. He’ll make all the difference if he’s on.
Shilton 4-3 Kings is the final score prediction. Kings 3-2 Wyshynski
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