Ramblings: Playoff schedule; Tampa at full strength; playoff previews – May 14

Michael Clifford

2021-05-14

The NHL released the full playoff schedule, though some times need to be filled in. Many of the American series are starting this weekend but Canada won't start until next week, as will Carolina and St. Louis. The full schedule can be viewed here.

It will be interesting to see how they navigate the start of the second round. Staggered starts? I hope so.

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Tampa Bay had full line rushes:

They also did a PP practice with Stamkos-Kuch on the top unit with Point-Killorn. It must be nice to add a couple future Hall of Famers for the postseason.

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Yesterday, I talked about some of the playoff matchups we'll be seeing starting this weekend. I wanted to wait a day to talk about the West and North because we still had some possible jockeying to be done. Technically, there is still some jockeying that can be done as Colorado can overtake Vegas for first in the division with a win on Thursday night (this is being written Thursday afternoon).

Before digging into that, all I will say is this: even if Colorado overtakes Vegas for first in the division, I don't think it really changes much. Both teams will be big favourites over either St. Louis or Minnesota: Colorado went 10-5-1 against those two teams while Vegas went 9-6-1. Vegas seemed to have some trouble with Minnesota, but it doesn't matter, they'd still be the favourites.

I am going to assume Colorado won on Thursday night and clinched first in the division; I went to bed at 5-1 in Colorado’s favour at the intermission.

Also, for a lot more detail on the playoffs, includin