Like March Madness, the Bowl Season, the NFL and NBA playoffs or any other postseason action in sports, the 2012 NHL playoffs have begun with a bang and the story lines are many.
Fans have come to expect the unexpected, and on any given night, any team has a shot to win a game.
When reflecting back on the first round of the playoffs, every series came with a bundle of joy, anxiety, controversy and great overall play.
When looking at the impact of each series, it is critical to consider the teams involved, the strength of each side, the popular interest in each series, close competition and what made each one truly unique.
Based on some of this criteria, let's take a quick look at the Power Rankings of each first-round matchup.