One round down, eight teams still remain.
With the Boston Bruins' 7-4 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs in Game 7 on Wednesday night, the second round of the 2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs is set. As a result, fans of the advancing teams know who their squad will play and when.
2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs Schedule: 2nd Round
Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Boston Bruins
Game 1: Bruins at Lightning, Saturday, April 28, at 3 p.m. ET on NBC/SN
Game 2: Bruins at Lightning, Monday, April 30, at 7 p.m. ET on NBCSN/CBC
Game 3: Lightning at Bruins, Wednesday, May 2, at 7 p.m. ET on NBCSN/CBC
Game 4: Lightning at Bruins, Friday, May 4, at 7 p.m. ET on NBCSN/CBC
Game 5*: Bruins at Lightning, Sunday, May 6, TBD
Game 6*: Lightning at Bruins, Tuesday, May 8, TBD
Game 7*: Bruins at Lightning, Thursday, May 10, TBD
Washington Capitals vs. Pittsburgh Penguins
Game 1: Penguins at Capitals, Thursday, April 26, at 7 p.m. ET on NBCSN/CBC
Game 2: Penguins at Capitals, Sunday, April 29, at 3 p.m. ET on NBC/CBC
Game 3: Capitals at Penguins, Tuesday, May 1, at 7:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN/SN
Game 4: Capitals at Penguins, Thursday, May 3, at 7 p.m. ET on NBCSN/SN
Game 5*: Penguins at Capitals, Saturday, May 5, TBD
Game 6*: Capitals at Penguins, Monday, May 7, TBD
Game 7*: Penguins at Capitals, Wednesday, May 9, TBD
Nashville Predators vs. Winnipeg Jets
Game 1: Jets at Predators, Friday, April 27, at 8 p.m. ET on NBCSN/CBC
Game 2: Jets at Predators, Sunday, April 29, at 7 p.m. ET on NBCSN/CBC
Game 3: Predators at Jets, Tuesday, May 1, at 8 p.m. ET on CNBC/CBC
Game 4: Predators at Jets, Thursday, May 3, at 9:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN/CBC
Game 5*: Jets at Predators, Saturday, May 5, TBD
Game 6*: Predators at Jets, Monday, May 7, TBD
Game 7*: Jets at Predators, Thursday, May 10, TBD
Vegas Golden Knights vs. San Jose Sharks
Game 1: Sharks at Golden Knights, Thursday, April 26, at 10 p.m. ET on NBCSN/CBC
Game 2: Sharks at Golden Knights, Saturday, April 28, at 8 p.m. ET on NBC/CBC
Game 3: Golden Knights at Sharks, Monday, April 30, at 10 p.m. ET on NBCSN/CBC
Game 4: Golden Knights at Sharks, Wednesday, May 2, at 10 p.m. ET on NBCSN/CBC
Game 5*: Sharks at Golden Knights, Friday, May 4, 10 p.m. ET on NBCSN/CBC
Game 6*: Golden Knights at Sharks, Sunday, May 6, TBD
Game 7*: Sharks at Golden Knights, Tuesday, May 8, TBD
For the third straight season, Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin will go head-to-head in the playoffs. The Washington Capitals and their fans have to be hoping third time is the charm, as the Pittsburgh Penguins have won the previous two meetings.
Both Washington and Pittsburgh needed six games to win their opening-round series against the Columbus Blue Jackets and the Philadelphia Flyers, respectively. The Capitals are one of the hottest teams in the playoffs, having won four straight games after falling into a 2-0 hole. The decision to put Braden Holtby in net near the end of Game 2 sparked that comeback.
Washington may be tired given four games against the Blue Jackets needed overtime in order to be decided, with one even going to double overtime.
The Caps, who dominated on the power play against Columbus, are averaging four goals per game in the playoffs, having gotten five out of Ovechkin in the first round. In the same breath, Pittsburgh scored an average of 4.67 goals per game against Philadelphia, with Crosby and Jake Guentzel each finding the back of the net six times.
It's a tale of two sagas. Ovechkin has never made it past the second round; Crosby and Co. have won nine straight playoff series.
The other Eastern Conference matchup features the conference's top two teams from the regular season, the Tampa Bay Lightning (113 points) and Bruins (112 points). Both just happen to play in the Atlantic Division.
The Lightning were the highest-scoring team during the regular season, and they made quick work of the New Jersey Devils. They scored 18 goals in a five-game series victory, and each victory came by multiple goals. Boston, on the other hand, jumped out to a 3-1 series lead over Toronto before needing a Game 7 rally to advance. It too found the back of the net frequently, scoring four goals per contest.
In the Western Conference, the Vegas Golden Knights are looking to continue to make history. They became the first team to sweep a postseason series during their inaugural season. Although a sweep may make it seem like it was an easy series, the Los Angeles Kings posed a tough test. Each game was decided by just one goal, with one game needing an extra period.
As for the Knights' second-round opponents, the San Jose Sharks had a slightly easier time with the Anaheim Ducks. San Jose had a pair of wins decided by one goal, but it also held an 11-1 advantage in the other two games.
The reigning Western Conference champs, the Nashville Predators, got all it could handle from the Colorado Avalanche. The opening-round series required six games and had three games decided by one goal. However, the Preds notched three victories that featured five goals apiece.
The Winnipeg Jets, the second-highest scoring team in the league during the regular season, averaged 3.20 goals per game against the Minnesota Wild in a five-game series, nearly matching their 3.33 season average. And while the offense performed at a high level, goalie Connor Hellebuyck was doing his job as well. Outside of allowing six goals in Game 3, he was a brick wall. He allowed a total of three goals in four victories, recording two shutouts.
The first round provided plenty of compelling hockey. With the stakes even higher, the second round promises to be just as good—if not better.