Remember when many of us thought that the play-in round teams were at an advantage from already playing more important games than the round-robin teams? Well, it turns out that only two play-in teams (Vancouver, NY Islanders) are still remaining in the playoffs. The first round of the "actual" playoffs didn't see the widespread number of upsets that many were expecting. Maybe there is an advantage to playing round-robin warmup games after all.
So even though the first round of the playoffs unexpectedly (mostly) went according to plan, this round turned out to be a better showing for the panel than the play-in round.
After the majority of the panel only chose two of the eight play-in series correctly, the panel majority chose five of the eight first-round series correctly. The panel correctly chose Philadelphia, Tampa Bay, NY Islanders, Vegas, and Colorado. However, the panel missed out on Boston, Dallas, and Vancouver. The panel's lifetime record is 101-64 when it comes to postseason predictions.
Experts Panel: Playoff Round 1 Predictions
Experts Panel: Western Conference Play-In Picks
Experts Panel: Eastern Conference Play-In Picks
The coin toss provided exactly the odds that a coin toss should, picking four of the eight series correctly.
Congratulations to Brennan DeSouza, who led all writers by correctly picking seven of the eight series. His only whiff was on the Boston/Carolina series. Brennan writes two articles for Dobber Hockey (see below), so you know that he is dedicated to studying hockey.
With Round 2 beginning just a day after Round 1 concludes, the panel didn't have much time to make its playoff picks for the conference semifinal. Regardless, the Dobber writers have submitted their picks for you.
Eastern Conference matchups
Philadelphia (4, 1) vs. NY Islanders (7, 6)
Tampa Bay (2, 2) vs. Boston (1, 4)
Western Conference matchups
Vegas (3, 1) vs. Vancouver (7, 5)
Colorado (2, 2) vs. Dallas (4, 3)
For matchups, the first number shows the rank before the play-in tournament, while the second number shows re-seeding rank after the play-in tournament.
NY Islanders in 6
Tampa Bay in 7
Vegas in 5
Colorado in 4
Philadelphia in 7
Tampa Bay in 7