Since all 16 playoff teams have been decided with the playoffs set to start on Monday, you can now officially start preparing for your playoff pool. As is the case every year, you can grab the Interactive Playoff Draft List to help you plan your team. Set your own bracket to organize, or use Dobber's picks. Head over to the Dobber Sports store to purchase yours or to find out more!
If you would like to set up a simple playoff pool with some friends or work colleagues, the free box pools might be for you.
Also, look for the writers to weigh in on their Stanley Cup and first-round picks shortly. If you'd like some tips on picking teams and players, I encourage you to read Mike's playoff breakdown in yesterday's Ramblings.
Questions abound for the Vegas Golden Knights after they failed to meet expectations this season. Is there really a rift between Robin Lehner and Peter DeBoer? The fact that Vegas has three more seasons invested in Lehner could spell the end of DeBoer. Is it all on the coach? Hardly, as there were a ton of injuries, with Lehner perhaps the most notable. No one on this team has played every game this season, while Max Pacioretty, Mark Stone, Jack Eichel, and Alec Martinez have all played fewer than half of the team's games.
Logan Thompson has played about as well as could have been asked in this situation, including back-to-back quality starts in back-to-back games this week (both losses). Unless there's an offseason move, he could be back in the AHL next season because of both Lehner and Laurent Brossoit, who has one year remaining on his contract. I still like him as a potential keeper, although you might have to be patient because of his status on the contract pecking order.
Since his return from a back injury, Stone has just one point in his last eight games. Not that he's the fastest skater around, but from what I'd seen in Wednesday's game, Stone appears to be laboring like he's still not 100 percent. I'd keep an eye on his injury status over the summer, as this was a problem that lingered all season and could be a projection trajectory issue if left unresolved.
Eichel has just one point in his last six games, although that came after a six-game point streak. It's too early to say Vegas shouldn't have made this trade, but players like Conor Garland, Joel Eriksson Ek, Sam Bennett, and the retiring Ryan Getzlaf have a similar point-per-game pace to Eichel (0.67 PTS/GP) this season. Eichel cou