Five things to know about the NHL playoffs
The Toronto Maple Leafs can break a curse, and the Winnipeg Jets are hanging on to their playoff hopes.
Here are five things to know about the NHL playoffs:
CAN LEAFS ACTUALLY DO IT?
It's been 19 long years since the Toronto Maple Leafs last played in the second round of the Stanley Cup playoffs, and that undesirable streak could end tonight.
The Maple Leafs are up 3-1 on the Tampa Bay Lightning and could wrap up the series in Game 5 at Scotiabank Arena in Toronto. But if history has taught us anything, the Maple Leafs shouldn't be getting ahead of themselves.
Two seasons ago, Toronto led the Montreal Canadiens 3-1 in a first-round series, only to lose the next three games and be eliminated by its underdog rivals.
Maple Leafs coach Sheldon Keefe is opting to keep the same lineup as the last three games, meaning forward Michael Bunting will be a healthy scratch despite returning from a suspension.
JETS ON THE BRINK
The injuries keep coming in Winnipeg.
Already down top defenceman Josh Morrissey, the Jets will now be without 42-goal scorer Mark Scheifele for tonight's must-win Game 5 in Vegas against the Golden Knights.
Winnipeg opened the first-round series with an upset win but has since lost three straight to favoured Vegas and would be eliminated with another loss.
The Jets could get a boost with the return of injured winger Nikolaj Ehlers, who has yet to play these playoffs.
There's an old cliché in the NHL playoffs that you're not in trouble until you've lost at home. But it looks like quite the opposite in a series between the New York Rangers and New Jersey Devils.
After the Rangers stole two games in New Jersey to open the series, the Devils crossed the Hudson River and took two wins of their own at Madison Square Garden in New York.
The series between the neighbouring rivals continues tonight in New Jersey.
TKACHUK BURNS ULLMARK
Last night in the NHL, the Boston Bruins dominated the Florida on home ice — but the Panthers came out on top to keep their season alive.
Bruins goalie Linus Ullmark tried to fight Panthers forward Matthew Tkachuk last game. This time, Ullmark was serving Tkachuk pucks instead of fists.
With the score tied 3-3 in overtime, Ullmark misplayed the puck behind his own net to set up Tkachuk's game-winner. The play followed Sergei Bobrovsky's last-second breakaway save on Boston winger Brad Marchand at the end of regulation to force the extra frame.
The Panthers have cut the Bruins' series lead to 3-2, with Game 6 set for Friday in Florida.
TITLE DEFENCE AT RISK
The Seattle Kraken can win their first series in franchise history by taking down the defending Stanley Cup champions.
The Kraken beat the Colorado Avalanche 3-2 last night to take a 3-2 series lead, with Game 6 in Seattle on Friday.
Playing unlikely hero for the Kraken was Tye Kartye, who made his NHL debut and scored to put Seattle up 2-1 in the second period.
Kartye, 21, was called up to the Kraken 10 days ago after playing the entire season in the American Hockey League.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 27, 2023.
The Canadian Press