LUSBY, Md. – The NHL playoffs are already off to a great start.  A postseason that is going to be remembered as one of the best after only the first round, with the new expansion teams continuing to succeed in the early stages of their franchises history. 

The Vegas Golden Knights, who are in their 6th season, have made the playoffs every year in their existence and have advanced to the second round.  Then, the 2nd year Seattle Kraken took down the defending 2022 champs, the Colorado Avalanche, in the first round.  

The Edmonton Oilers are the Western Conference favorites led by winger Connor McDavid and defenseman Leon Draisaitl.  They are facing the Vegas Golden Knights in the Western Conference Semi-final.  The Knights are led by center Jack Eichel and goalie Johnathon Quick.  I think that the Oilers will take this series by game six or it will take a game seven for them to eliminate the Golden Knights.

On the other side of the Western Conference, the Dallas Stars are taking on the Seattle Kraken. The Kraken already lead the series 1-0 after a 5-4 overtime thrilling win. I think that the Kraken will win this series in six games and advance to the Western Conference Finals for the first time in the team’s history.  

In the Eastern Conference, where it has already been a historic start, the Toronto Maple Leafs have won their first playoff series in 19 years after taking down a juggernaut in the Tampa Bay Lightning. 

The New Jersey Devils took down the New York Rangers in a thrilling seven game series. 

The Carolina Hurricanes made quick work of the New York Islanders. 

Then in the upset of the millennium the 8th seeded took down one of, if not the greatest hockey team ever the  Boston Bruins. The Florida Panthers shocked the hockey world.  In game seven in overtime in Boston the Panthers stuck the dagger in Boston when Carter Verhaeghe put the game away to seal the upset. The Bruins had a record of 65-12-5, the most wins and points in NHL history. There has never been any sort of upset like this in the history of the NHL.

The Stanley Cup final has a meeting between the Carolina Hurricanes and the Edmonton Oilers. The Carolina Hurricanes winning their 2nd ever Stanley Cup trophy in an unbelievable seven game series.  This year of playoffs is one for the ages.

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