The NHL playoffs are the most exciting part of each season, and Tuesday’s action is a perfect microcosm of the hard-hitting hockey on display this postseason.
All of the following matchups are sure to make your Tuesday night exciting.
Let's take a look at some last-second predictions for each contest.
Montreal Canadiens at Ottawa Senators: 7 p.m. ET on CNBC
Game 4, Senators Lead 2-1
After one of the most ferocious games of the 2013 playoffs thus far, the Montreal Canadiens once again must travel to Ottawa to take on the Senators in one of the rowdiest buildings in the league.
The Senators beat the Canadiens on the scoreboard in Game 3 (6-1 final score), but it was how they embarrassed Montreal that really stood out. They dominated physically in both the checking aspect of the game and the fights that took place as the score began to get one-sided.
As well as the Senators played Sunday, revenge is on the Canadiens' mind. Montreal knows that it must take at least one game in Ottawa if it wants a chance to walk away victorious.
Prediction: Canadiens 2, Senators 1
Pittsburgh Penguins at New York Islanders: 7 p.m. ET on NBC Sports Network
Game 4, Penguins Lead 2-1
The Pittsburgh Penguins have been playing amazing offensively, but the lack of elite play from goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury has left the door wide open for the New York Islanders.
Fleury has allowed eight goals in the last two games and looks to be as inconsistent as they come in between the pipes right now. With the Islanders pumping on all cylinders—getting offensive production from top three lines—Pittsburgh must stiffen up defensively.
Led by the elite playmaking of captain Sidney Crosby in the offensive end, the Penguins will handle their business on Long Island and beat New York convincingly Tuesday to take complete control of the series.
While the Islanders will put up a valiant effort, Pittsburgh is just too good.
Prediction: Penguins 4, Islanders 1
Chicago Blackhawks at Minnesota Wild: 9:30 p.m. ET on NBC Sports Network
Game 4, Blackhawks Lead 2-1
After watching the Minnesota Wild attack the Chicago Blackhawks relentlessly in Game 3, it would be safe to say that Game 4 will feature plenty of intense physical action from both teams.
This Western Conference battle was as one-sided as they come on paper, but the Wild are a team predicated on tough defense, solid goaltending and timely scoring. The problem has been the lack of scoring for Minnesota, though.
The Blackhawks entered the playoffs as a favorite to win the Stanley Cup because of the depth on their roster.
Not only do they have two viable starting goalies they could use, but the sheer skill and talent across the offensive line and defensive pairings will also give Chicago the edge in Game 4 and the rest of the series.
Prediction: Blackhawks 3, Wild 2
Vancouver Canucks at San Jose Sharks: 10 p.m. ET on CNBC
Game 4, Sharks Lead 3-0
The Vancouver Canucks were a championship-caliber team, but the lockout-shortened season has negatively impacted the way the team has approached the offseason.
The San Jose Sharks are flat-out beating the Canucks in every facet of the game thus far.
San Jose has scored 11 goals through the first three games—points coming from across all forward lines and top defenders—and has only allowed five goals. Led by the standout play of goalie Antti Niemi, the Sharks have turned into a serious contender to win the Stanley Cup.
As much as the Canucks have the talent to win a game in this series, they won’t.
Prediction: Sharks 5, Canucks 2
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